UAE tech career: IT director job description, salary, and skills

By Robert Half on 16th January 2024

Are you considering a tech career relocation to the UAE? The high living standard and strong tech industry have many Brits considering their options. Our hiring experts share everything you need to know about IT director jobs in Dubai and the UAE, from role requirements to differences in the hiring market.

UAE vs. UK hiring market and tech landscape

According to data gathered for the Robert Half 2024 Salary Guide, tech and IT hiring in the UAE has become less competitive due to the number of expats relocating for luxury lifestyle benefits. This contrasts with the UK hiring market, in which 50% of tech employers plan to add new permanent positions and 35% plan to hire temp talent, which has caused a slightly more candidate-led market.

The UAE government has introduced new business incentives for start-ups, causing employers to seek the best leadership talent for their growing teams. IT managers and head of IT roles are in high demand as part of this, prompting a 1.7% salary increase to stay competitive.

Zaynah Onye, Sr. Technology Talent Manager at Robert Half UAE, added “the UAE government has always been very supportive with developing a culture of innovation, and has made extensive investments in technology across multiple sectors.

Businesses in the UAE are continuing to grow, and employers are looking for tech leadership talent with end-to-end delivery experience. Both UK and UAE employers are hungry for talent with ERP implementation experience. Candidates on both sides of the world are interested in more flexible work environments and want benefits that offset the rising cost of living.

We’re witnessing the UAE become the tech hub of the Middle East, providing fantastic opportunities for talented professionals, who can also enjoy the perks of a high-quality lifestyle!” explains Zaynah.

Related: Why are so many Brits abandoning the city for Dubai?

IT director job description

An IT director is responsible for overseeing all IT and computer systems. They support company growth plans and objectives with technology-based tools, systems, policies, and strategies.

As IT director, your job description will vary depending on the size of the company you support and the sector you work in. In most cases, you’ll oversee technical operations, project planning, and building a high-performance tech team to support the company.

IT director roles and responsibilities

As an IT director in Dubai, you’ll be heavily involved with the IT function’s day-to-day activity. This involves managing and developing tech talent, creating secure cyber environments, and ensuring the company has the necessary systems and software.


  • Outlining and upholding the company’s IT mission
  • Managing all IT staff
  • Sourcing technology and systems to improve operational efficacy.
  • Developing and upholding information security policies and standards
  • Engaging and liaising with third-party vendors
  • Building disaster recovery and continuity plans
  • Project planning, management, and delivery for new system or software rollouts, office moves, system migrations etc.
  • Forecasting and budgeting

Successfully securing a job offer and a work visa from a potential employer depends on whether you have the right skills for the role. Here's a selection of technical and soft skills UAE tech employers commonly ask for.

Technical skills:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering, Computer Science, or Information Systems Management.
  • At least 5–10 years of experience in IT management, operations, or service.
  • Knowledge of cloud platforms like AWS and Azure
  • Experience with database management (most notably, Oracle Fusion)
  • Experience with test automation
  • Proven track record of successful project management

Soft skills:

  • Leadership/people management
  • Strong organisational skills
  • Excellent problem-solving skills
  • Strong analytical skills
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Adaptability
  • Negotiation skills
  • Stakeholder management
  • Vendor/relationship management

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IT director salary in Dubai

Data from the 2024 UAE Salary Guide shows a 1.2% average salary increase across IT and technology, with a 1.7% pay increase for leadership positions. Currently, IT directors with ten to nineteen years of experience can command an average salary of AED 408,584, including bonuses and overtime. Professionals with over twenty years of experience could earn an average of AED 498,832.

The highest salaries are more likely to be offered to professionals with ERP, e-commerce, SAP, and Oracle Fusion experience, as these are currently some of the most in-demand skills within the UAE tech hiring market.


Are you ready to explore a potential tech career move to the UAE? Our team can help you get there. Browse IT director jobs in Dubai on our site or upload your CV today. Want more info before you apply? Read our expat’s guide to relocation.

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