Recruitment in Morocco, the gateway to Africa, has some characteristics that you need to be aware of before looking for talent in this territory. Moulay Youssef is our Country Manager in the neighbouring country and is a perfect connoisseur of the Moroccan labour market.
Moulay, we would like to start this meeting by asking you what are the main difficulties in recruiting in Morocco.
In Morocco we hire for skills and attitude. Lack of knowledge about the different schools and universities in the country and not setting the right interviews and technical tests to make sure the candidate is at the right level are the main difficulties. Of course, there must be enough people experience to detect behavioural traits and decide if these would fit well with the company’s culture and team spirit.
Is the Moroccan market receptive to change, or is it perhaps more conservative?
Our labour market is very flexible and receptive to change. Over the last 20 years, on the one hand, universities and schools have developed their programmes to adapt to the needs of the industry and, on the other hand, young people have learned within the different multinationals that have opened in Morocco. This provides us with intelligent candidates, eager to learn and with different levels of experience.
Moulay, what are the most developed sectors in Morocco?
The automotive sector is growing very fast with the implementation of the Renault and PSA plants. They were followed by many multinationals and, in addition, many small entrepreneurs are interested in Morocco.
Aeronautics is also a developing sector with Bombardier and its suppliers. Finally, I would place the energy sector in the top 3 sectors; Morocco has invested a lot in this sector with the Noor project (unique in the world) and in wind farms.
And what are the most sought-after professions on the job market?
While all specialties can be found in the Moroccan market, there is a specific demand for sales people, CFOs, IT specialists, data scientists, programmers and technicians in automation, robotics and electronics.
What are the peculiarities of the Moroccan labour market?
The Moroccan labour market is very competitive and workers can learn almost any kind of process.
For white and blue collar workers, the quality is getting better and better and, for specific positions, salaries are close to European levels.
A very positive point is that candidates speak at least two languages, while most speak four or more. In addition, young people are becoming more selective about where they live.
How do you retain talent in the market?
The Moroccan market is very competitive. In our experience, the best solution to retain talent is to pay employees fairly, involve them in the business and implement a good leadership culture, which is the most important point.
In Morocco, are there any prejudices in the labour market when it comes to hiring non-local candidates?
As in all countries, local candidates have priority.
How many days of holiday are there by law per year?
18 are the statutory minimum, but this increases by 1.5 working days per full five-year period of seniority, up to a maximum of 30 working days of holiday.
Some companies choose to give more days from the start, a way of being different.
Is the Moroccan labour market highly skilled?
Yes, it is. You have all the necessary in levels.
What is the proportion of small and medium-sized companies or family businesses versus large companies or multinationals?
Most of our market is for small and medium-sized companies.
What new legislation affects human resources?
The current Labour Code is the one adopted in 2004. In general, everything is done to favour the success of the company and, at the same time, to protect the basic rights of the employee.
Moulay, from the company’s point of view, what are the most common notice periods in your country when a candidate announces that he/she is leaving the company?
There are different notice periods depending on the position: 1 month for a basic employee, 2 months for a senior employee and 3 months for a manager.
Would you say that companies have a strong corporate culture?
This depends on the size of the company and its leadership. In my experience, I have seen small companies that are outstanding in terms of corporate culture but also a very weak culture in some multinationals. It all depends on the person at the top and his or her leadership team.
What are the main things a company should be aware of before considering recruiting candidates in your country?
Being very close to Europe and having a majority of French or Spanish companies, the basics are the same. However, companies should be aware that the culture in Morocco is rich and is made up of many subcultures in relation to many regions.
A good recruitment by a professional will guarantee good performance, retention and good sustainable relations.
Moulay, what advice would you give to our clients with a subsidiary in your country, or to those who are planning to open one?
Take the time to talk to us, it’s free :-D. We will share the most whether we work together or not.
Morocco is an excellent business destination, so make sure you do things right and don’t always look for the cheapest solution.
What details do companies that settle in this country not take into account?
Cost vs. quality, culture, expertise and asking successful companies in the same country.
When hiring a candidate, what is most valued in companies (skills, experience, etc.)?
I would say that what is valued the most:
- Diploma: background knowledge (although this is becoming less and less important).
- Behaviour (for me the most critical, often overlooked).
- Know-how: some proof is needed for some positions.
Depending on the positions, more criteria may be checked and tests administered.
What are the most demanded skills at local level?
The most common skills required in all functions: soft skills.
And what is more common, temporary recruitment or permanent recruitment?
Temporary hiring in Morocco is defined by the labour code to cover temporary work while permanent hiring is the normal hiring for permanent work.
In companies, is there union pressure or wage tables by agreements? Or, on the contrary, are they governed by the free market?
For me, trade unions are a problem when there is a war between them and the company.
Great recruitment is a step towards not needing unions, or at least having one to act as a partner. Recruitment is key here. Very bad recruitment can lead to ruining the company.
Do companies perceive any kind of recruitment assistance?
For labour there is ANAPEC, a government agency that provides lists of candidates free of charge.
Is flexible working common in companies?
It is not yet common but some companies are starting to implement it. This situation brought about by Covid-19 has encouraged leaders to think unconventionally. Some companies have established telework even after Covid-19.
How has a global pandemic like the one we have experienced been experienced in the human resources area?
The same as everywhere else in the world, I suppose. Companies are doing their best to align with global regulations and recommendations. While the government is supporting companies and being flexible, having frequent meetings.
Moulay, we have gone deep into the Moroccan labour market and how companies are in your country, now we would like to talk about another fundamental part, the candidates… How do they look for a job? Do they use social networks or job portals to do so? Which are the most used in your country?
Yes, they use both. The most used are: ANAPEC (mainly for technicians and blue collars), Rekrute.com (job portal), social networks, recruitment agencies and another very common way, depositing the CV directly with the company.
What do candidates value most when looking for a job?
What candidates value most is the mission statement, company name, leadership style, salary and development.
What does it mean for local talent to work for a Spanish company, and is it attractive?
Spanish and French companies are common in Morocco. The reputation of the company is very important so they will try to get information about the values mentioned above.
Tell us a bit about education in Morocco, which universities are the most valued in your country? Which would you say are the most renowned universities?
In general, the quality of universities is high. Nowadays, as explained before, the name of the university is not everything. The skills of the candidate are more important.
And what types of studies are more valued?
That depends on the position.
What do you do to understand what the client expects from our candidate search?
First of all, we must understand the client’s need, understanding the objective of the project; each project has a specific set of positions.
We establish or amend job descriptions and initiate the search according to the agreed process. If we have already been successful in a similar project, we also advise the client and share knowledge.
Moulay, finally, we would like to know from you what makes you passionate about recruitment?
When a new investor comes to Morocco, he brings the knowledge, the machinery, the processes. He knows exactly what he wants, what quality and when. The only thing he doesn’t know is: can I find the people who will drive the project forward up to expectations?
After more than 25 years working in HR, as a team designer I love every time I answer YES to your questions and I feel even happier and prouder when the investor succeeds and achieves his goals.
That is what I am so passionate about in recruitment.
Are you looking for a recruitment provider for your branches in other countries? You can read some of our success stories. At binternational we recruit local and expat staff and we centralise our management in Spain for your convenience. Contact us.