24 May 2015 12:00
Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, celebrated a double win at the MENA HR Excellence Awards 2015, after being honoured in the ‘Nationalisation Initiative of the Year’ and ‘HR Professional of the Year’ categories.
The MENA HR
Excellence Awards, now in their seventh year, celebrate excellence in human
resource management and development within the Middle East and North Africa.
received the ‘Nationalisation Initiative of the Year’ award for pioneering one
of the UAE’s most successful nationalisation strategies, with a focus on
offering dynamic career and development opportunities to Emiratis in the UAE
and other markets worldwide.
The airline currently
employs more than 2,300 UAE nationals across its global business. Emiratis
remain the number one nationality group amongst total employees based in the
UAE, and amongst employees at manager level, executive level and within Etihad
Airways’ pilot community. Under plans to accelerate its employment of UAE
nationals over the next five years, Etihad Airways is expected to recruit more
than 6,000 UAE nationals by 2020.
A number of
initiatives are underway to create rewarding careers for Emiratis. Last year,
Etihad Airways opened a Revenue Accounting Centre of Excellence in Al Ain,
which will create job opportunities for over 1,000 UAE nationals by 2017.
Etihad Airways has also expanded its broad portfolio of specialist development
programs for UAE nationals to include areas such as finance, revenue
management, network planning and cargo.
There are now a total
of 22 UAE national development programs offered by Etihad Airways for Emiratis
to develop key skills and gain practical experience, enabling them to fast
track their managerial careers with the airline.
In addition to the
‘Nationalisation Initiative of the Year’ award, Etihad Airways’ Chief People
and Performance Officer, Ray Gammell, received the ‘HR Professional of the
Mr Gammell, who
joined Etihad Airways six years ago, is responsible for the strategic HR
direction of the airline, which has almost 25,000 employees worldwide. He was
named ‘HR Professional of the Year’ by the judging panel for embedding a
culture of performance, talent, meritocracy and engagement at Etihad Airways;
creating world-class benefits for the airline’s staff; and supporting a number
of restructuring programs with Etihad Airways’ equity partners.
Mr Gammell said:
“Etihad Airways is a people business and we need dedicated, hardworking and
passionate employees to maintain our position as the World’s Leading Airline.
fundamental to this process and remains the number one priority of the HR
division. The fact that we have been presented with the Nationalisation
Initiative of the Year award reflects the considerable success of our
nationalisation strategy, which is focused on providing Emiratis with
world-class career and development opportunities in the UAE and across our
global network. It is also a much wider reflection of the collective efforts, hard
work and commitment of the entire HR team, which has built a strong culture of
performance, and I thank them for their tremendous contribution.”