HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT IN SAUDI ARABIA: SAUDIZATION OF THE WORK FORCE
This research examines the effects on human resource management in Saudi Arabian organizations of the Saudi government's policy to Saudi-ize the country's work force. Saudization of the work force refers to efforts to replace alien labor in Saudi Arabia with Saudi citizens (Euromoney, 1985, p. 31). The findings of this research are presented in the following discussions: (1) development and character of the problem; (2) the Saudization policy; and (3) the effects of the Saudization policy on human resource management within organizations in Saudi Arabia.
Development and Character of the Problem
Gaining control from the international oil companies of its crude oil resources provided Saudi Arabia with the funds which enabled to country to embark on a massive program of economic and social development. Prior to the time this development began, the foreign workers who had been in the country were few in number, were employed in highly skilled or managerial positions, and were effectively isolated from most of the Saudi population.
These earlier foreign workers were representatives of foreign governments or of foreign private sector organizations, advisers to the Saudi government, highly placed public administrators in the Saudi bureaucracy, or skilled workers in the oil fields. None of these workers either enjoyed or expected any political rights. Neither did they live among or mingle with ordinary Saudi citizens.
In the case of the oil field workers and their supervisors, they lived in well-appointed compounds, which provided for all of their daily needs (Nawwab, 1980, pp. 225-251). Within these compounds, foreign workers were expected to conform to Saudi behavioral norms, such as an abstinence from the consumption of alcohol.
With the advent of increased revenues from the country's petroleum resource, the Saudi leadership was acutely awa...