How to Write a CV for UAE jobs?


Dreaming of sun-kissed beaches, bustling markets, and career growth in the dynamic UAE countries?

You are not alone!

With over 200 nationalities serving the job market, Dubai is a dream job location for many professionals.

However, landing your dream job requires developing a CV for UAE jobs that shines bright and captures the attention of headhunters. So, if you are applying for a position, your next step is to create a winning CV specifically tailored to UAE and Dubai jobs.

In this guide, you will find out answers to the most common questions on how to write a Dubai CV. We have included tips and insights from our Gulf CV experts  about how to write a good CV that resonates with UAE recruiters.

CV applying for a job in the Dubai office.

Let’s dive deeper and see what you need to put in your resume to get hired at the earliest:

What to Add in a CV?

Your CV is your professional representation on a paper. Think of it as your first impression of the recruiter. If it fails to capture their attention and impress the hiring team, you have lost the opportunity.

That is why, it should not just be a boring list of skills and degrees. Rather it must showcase your industry knowledge and professional achievements.

Here is a brief list of the things to add in a professional CV for the UAE market while composing a job application for a post. (details below in the article)

  • Complete contact details
  • Formal education
  • Training and certificates
  • Work history
  • Skills
  • Visa Status
  • Language Proficiency
  • A professional photo (optional)

All these are must-have components to include in a professional Resume.

Don’t just include information haphazardly. Your professional document may cover all the information but it won’t attract the employers much.


Because big blocks of text are boring and mundane!

Instead, convert large paragraphs of information into short resume bullets that involve specific, data-driven statements.

Bonus Tip:

Seek professional CV writing services in the UAE. With an expert’s guidance, you can best tailor your resume specifically to the local market requirements.

What is the Best CV Language for UAE Jobs?

English or Arabic

Knowing the Arabic Language is a huge plus when you are applying for positions in Dubai, Sharjah, or other Emirates States.

But are you supposed to write your resume in Arabic as well.

Not always. Usually, resumes and cover letters in the English language are preferred in the UAE market. If the company mentions submitting a resume in Arabic in the job Ad then certainly go for it. However, such cases are quite rare.

“Elaborative and Fancy” or “Crisp and Clean”

The rule of thumb for resume writing, cover letter composition, or any other professional manuscript is “keep it simple”.

Yes, you need to put in industry-specific keywords and a little bit of jargon. But make sure you don’t overdo it.

According to stats, a recruiter barely spends 6-8 seconds on one CV.

If your resume clicks to their mind, they will keep it for further analysis. Otherwise, it’s going straight into the trash bin.

The best way out is to use simple language and share specific details. All in all, your purpose is to provide necessary details but not compromising on clarity.

Resume points must be elaborative enough to deliver your point. However, they must not be too long that it’s hard to read them.

Maintaining a professional tone throughout is also very important. You should sound friendly, optimistic, and knowledgeable.

Write resume bullets in a way as if you are telling a friend about your experiences.

Precise and persuasive writing takes some practice and deliberate effort. If you need guidance, ask an expert to help you refine the tone and language.

Dubai CV for Applying a job

What Things You Should Eliminate While Writing a Gulf CV?

Your CV should not contain unnecessary items that have no connection with the job you are applying for. Such unwarranted stuff makes your resume look unprofessional and mundane. Recruiters dislike such CVs as they waste their time. To avoid getting rejected immediately, we recommend you delete useless things from your resume before submitting it to the company.

Here is a brief list of 10 things you must erase from your CV.

  1. Avoid hobbies, or personal details  (like children or family Information) that don’t add value to your candidacy.
  2. Remove all grammatical errors and typing mistakes.
  3. Don’t add clichés and overused phrases. Phrases like “highly motivated” or “team player” are too boring and ineffective.
  4. Avoid unnecessary length. Aim for a concise version that highlights the key accomplishments.
  5. Forgo slang words or informal language. Some Dubai recruiters consider it unprofessional and often disrespectful.
  6. Humor is another no-no for resumes. While it can be appropriate in some settings, it’s best to avoid it on your CV. Stick to a professional and serious tone.
  7. Do not mention your religious or political beliefs.
  8. Avoid using too many fonts, colors, or graphics.
  9. Do not add negative Information. There’s no need to mention past job failures or negative experiences.
  10. Avoid casual or informal pictures.

What is the Best CV Format for the UAE?

In our resume coaching, we are often asked about the Dubai CV format.

The answer is that Dubai recruiters don’t require you to format your CV in a specific way. You can format your resume in whatever way you like.

However, the rules of high readability, skim-friendly design, and clean outlook are generally applied in UAE resumes.

Besides that, here are the common practices for structuring your CV for UAE.

EducationEnlist your educational background in reverse chronological order
CertificationsAccording to the order of relevancy and authority
ExperienceDescribe your work history chronologically i.e. most recent experience goes first and so on
Ideal length2-3 pages
File formatsPdf., Docx.
CV Format for the UAE

Clear formatting is only the cherry on the top. What info do your resume contains, makes the actual difference.

What Is The Best CV Length For Applying To UAE Jobs?

The ideal length of a CV is one of the most frequently asked questions relating to formatting.

Well, it can be anywhere between 1-3 pages, whatever is necessary.

However, our tip is to keep it simple but not too brief. Instead, elaborate on your resume bullet a little bit. That’s because lengthy resumes are generally liked in the Dubai job market.

It is one of the main things that make UAE-optimized resumes different from others. Usually, in the USA or European countries, most employers prefer an average CV length of one page.

But Dubai recruiters have a different taste. Here, a 2-3 page CV is considered more authoritative and impressive.

UAE companies are often interested in knowing your visa status, language proficiency, and extensive details on your work history. So, the expectation for a long resume is justified.

How To Write a Resume Summary Section?

A winning resume overview section can help you grab the recruiter’s attention.
It outlines your professional worth by highlighting your key skills, and career successes.

  • To craft an attention-grabbing summary, make sure to keep it short and to the point. The recommended no. of lines for the CV summary section is 3-5 sentences.
  • Use strong verbs and numbers to showcase your impact.
  • Don’t make it salesy though. Starting words can be adjectives but overall,  only use 1 to 2 adjectives.
  • Make it job-specific by mentioning skills relevant to the position you’re targeting.

How To Make CV Skills Section Sound Professional And Valuable?

The skills section is your chance to show you’re a perfect match for the job. It helps employers see if you have what they need.

But do not list down a dozen random things you can do. Instead, highlight your professional skillset. Add the soft, and hard skills that will be useful at the positions you are applying for.

A handy trick is to pick job-related skills from the job listing. And compare them with your abilities. This way you can easily figure out your areas of expertise.

 Use clear, specific words to describe your skillset. Skip generic ones like “teamwork” and “creativity.” That sounds too bland and cliche.

Instead, you should use specific terms like “project management” or “data analysis” as that looks more credible and professional.

How To Write Work Experience In CV To Impress The Recruiter?

When writing the experience section, take care of 4 things:

  1. Dubai recruiters prefer candidates with excessive experience history. Hence, the best hack is to add key details of all positions in your employment history.
  2. Add numbers and data. Don’t just say you have worked in sales roles, exactly mention “15 years of work experience as a retail salesman.”
  3. Don’t just mention the job title you held at your previous occupation. Instead, elaborate on your role and contribution to showcase your professional value. Write how you helped those teams solve issues or achieve goals.

Instead of writing “Sales team manager,” write “lead a cross-functional sales team of 12. Analyzed market statistics and crafted a profitable sales strategy that brought 30% higher sales.”

  1. Write this section in the reverse chronological order. Put the most recent experience at the number one position and so on.

How to List the Education Section on Dubai CV?

If you have work experience, put that first on the resume. Place the education section right after that.

But in the case of freshers, adding an education and training section after the summary section is best.

Is Adding Charts and Images In UAE Resume Helpful?

Generally speaking, it is not appreciated to add a lot of design elements to your CV.

ATS boots also do not give a high score to resumes loaded with graphics.

Hence, adding charts and images might lead to neglected Job applications. A little bit of styling is good though. The trick here is to use a minimalistic design that feels natural to the eye.

Is It OK to Write Several Contact Numbers on your CV?

Adding multiple contact options on the resume is good as it gives the recruiter more flexibility. They can use whatever channel they want to contact you.

However, we do not recommend adding two or more telephone numbers on the same CV.

  • Only write one mobile number in the contacts section.
  • Give the number you use in your routine to make sure you are available when the hiring team contacts.
  • You can also use your social media profile as a mode of contact. It allows you to present a digital portfolio to back up your resume bullets. For instance, you can link to your LinkedIn profile, Facebook/Instagram business page, etc

The picture on The Resume- Yae or Nay?

Adding your photograph to the resume is not compulsory and uncommon in the UAE job market.

Hence, putting your picture on top of the CV is optional.

But if you do, do it right.

Don’t use a casual picture from your holidays, showing an awkward pose. Also, your facial expression matters when you choose to display it on top of your career vitae.

A professional photo has the following characteristics:

  • It is a decent headshot, showing your face and upper torso.
  • Your clothing is professional. Not necessarily formal, but decent and appropriate. The goal is to keep the photo aligned with the company culture of the targeted organization.
  • There is a gentle smile on your face. Angry, worried, or cunning facial expressions would do more harm than good.

How To Optimize Your CV For Applicant Tracking System?

The role of application tracking systems or ATS in hiring a candidate is significant.

Most recruiters use ATS software in the hiring process to sift out average candidates. Hence, your resume needs to conquer ATS to get in front of the recruiter’s eyes.

Here are our top 3 tips to make your resume ATS-friendly:

  • Use the job Ad to extract the most important keywords in the job ad. Use them to optimize your CV.
  • Avoid fancy fonts, tables, and pictures. Bullet points and basic fonts like Arial are best for Applicant Tracking Systems.
  • Each job has its own requirements. So, one resume cannot be used everywhere. Instead, customize it every time according to the new job description.

Ask a CV expert to make your resume compatible with ATS.

Are Keywords in a UAE Resume Actually Important?

Keyword optimization is a common advice you will get for resume writing. But why is it important to include as many relevant keywords as possible when writing a résumé?

It’s because your resume will go through ATS screening before it reaches the recruiters’ table. And ATS software scans your CV for industry-specific keywords to figure out its worth. Otherwise, your resume will be directly rejected.

Also, key phrases indicate to recruiters that you know the industry jargon and can fit the job well.

How To Find The Right Resume/CV Keywords?

The job advertisement is the easiest and most reliable source for finding the relevant keywords. Because the recruiter has put them over there himself.

Look at the skills and qualifications listed as requirements for the position. Phrases used here are some of the best keywords to optimize your resume, especially in the work experience section.

You can also look into other job postings and discussion boards to find out the specific words used in the industry. Shortlist the most common words and use them in different sections in your curriculum vitae for UAE Careers. (But don’t overdo it)

Keyword research and optimization often take a lot of time and practice. But it is a must-do as without proper keyword density, it’s so hard for your resume to make it through ATS. Take help from a resume specialist to save time and get a refined CV.

Expert Tip:

Localize and Personalize:

Spicing up your CV with industry and location-related keywords make your CV trustworthy and professional.
But if you want to put a cherry on the top; write your career vitae as if you are telling your career story to a friendly audience. Nothing else can make your CV sound more genuine!

Why Put Your Visa Status On CV?

Candidates who are already legally authorized to work in the UAE are often preferred.

That’s why, listing your visa status (green visa, standard work visa, permit level, etc.) increases the chances of getting a job. It indicates that you are immediately available for the job.

By being clear about your work eligibility and availability without delay, you show honesty and avoid any confusion later. This builds trust with the employer.

Why And How To Mention Certifications and Licenses On CV?

In the competitive job market of the UAE, you must highlight your specialized skills and field knowledge to land a job. You can do so by listing any licenses or certificates you’ve earned, especially from well-known international groups.

Dubai employers are generally more impressed by European or American certifications. For instance, accounting certificates from CIMA are considered highly valuable.

For some jobs, a license issued by the UAE government is necessary to work in Dubai and other states. For instance, licenses are a must in the following scenarios:

  •  If you want to work in the real estate department, you must own a license from the Land Department of the Dubai government
  • Similarly, a license from the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) is required to work as a healthcare provider in Dubai hospitals
  • A driving license is a top-most requirement if you are seeking positions as a taxi or truck driver. It is also necessary for traveling in Dubai and nearby cities on your own.

However, don’t randomly list every certification and license you hold. Instead, carefully analyze which best aligns with the job requirements. Mention it top of the list, followed by the second most relevant certificate/license.

Also, add your certificates in resume attachments. Mention at the end of the certification section “Additional documents attached.”

How To Make Your Job Application Completely Errors Free?

Spelling and grammar mistakes are the no. 1 resume writing faults that get candidates out of the job race. Here are our top tips to avoid these mistakes and increase your chances of getting the job:

  • Proofread resume and cover letter 3 times. Take breaks in between these proofreading sessions. Look for typos, grammatical errors, and reading difficulty. Read aloud for clarity.
  • Double-check contact information for accuracy and consistency across all materials.
  • Maintain consistent formatting in resume and cover letter (fonts, styles, headings).
  • Ask a knowledgeable friend or resume expert to critique your resume.
  • Submit required documents in the requested format and meet deadlines.

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