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How to Start a Business While You Are Employed in the UAE?

Starting Own Business in Dubai
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One of the phenomena we have seen in recent years is the growth in people starting a business while being employed in full-time jobs. This act is often colloquially called having “a side hustle.” A side hustle is starting a business on the side of your full-time career to make extra income. It is not always because employees need the money; it can be about exploring a hobby and other interests.

Starting a New Business While Working Full Time

Starting a new business while you work full-time isn’t always easy. It takes time, effort, and a lot of energy to commit yourself to more than one job and to do both well. So for those who seek more financial security or want to pursue a hobby or passion, what are some key aspects to think about?

First of all, before you take any steps, you will need to review your employment contract to see if it has any language that limits your employment within a particular industry or anti-moonlighting clauses. If it does, we recommend you seek legal advice before proceeding.

On the other spectrum, you may have an employer with no issue with staff starting their own business as long as they get their job done and don’t compete with the company. Instead, they see it as a way for staff to pursue their hobby or passion, which keeps them happy and engaged.

Overcoming the No Objection Certificate Requirement

One typical challenge employees encounter is getting a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from their existing employer to start a new venture. It can pose a significant hurdle as some employers have a policy to never issue such documents to staff. However, not all jurisdictions require a NOC to start a company.

Several free zone jurisdictions have eliminated the need for a NOC. You can get a business license in as little as 48 hours from these free zones. Our consultants can provide you with the latest list of free zones that do not require a NOC.

What Business Should I Start?

Think about what you’re good at and what you enjoy doing. Your side hustle should be something you’re passionate about. Look at what other people are offering in your area of expertise and see if there is a demand for your skills. Consider what sets you apart from others and what unique value you can offer.

Decide what you want to achieve with your side hustle and create a plan to reach those goals. This might include setting a budget, finding clients, or creating a marketing strategy. Reach out to friends, family, and other professionals in your field to let them know about your new venture. Attend networking events and join online communities related to your industry.

Start small and focus on delivering high-quality work. Then, as you build your reputation, you can scale your business and take on more clients. Keep track of your income and expenses, and save money for your business license renewal. You may also consider setting up a separate bank account for your business in Dubai.

Continuously improve your skills and stay updated with industry trends and changes. This will help you remain competitive and grow your business over time. Remember, a side hustle takes time and effort to get off the ground, but you can turn it into a successful and fulfilling venture with dedication and hard work.

Popular Businesses that Entrepreneurs have Started While Being Employed

Over the years, we have seen almost every type of business launched as a side hustle. We have made a list of the most common ones below:

  • Online coaching or mentoring: Offer coaching or mentoring services in business, fitness, or personal development areas.
  • Online tutoring: Offer tutoring services in subjects you’re knowledgeable in, such as math, science, or a foreign language.
  • Selling handmade goods online: Create and sell handmade products such as jewelry, clothing, or home decor.
  • Online personal training or fitness classes: Offer personal training services or fitness classes online.
  • Virtual assistance: Offer virtual assistant services such as administrative support, data entry, or social media management.
  • Online event planning: Offer event planning services for birthdays, weddings, or corporate events.
  • Content creation: Create and sell content such as ebooks, courses, or stock photos.
  • Transcription or translation: Offer transcription or translation services for audio or written materials.
  • Voice-over work: Offer your voice for commercial or podcast work.
  • Virtual bookkeeping: Offer virtual bookkeeping services to small businesses or individuals.
  • Graphic design: Offer graphic design services for logos, brochures, or website design.

These are just a few examples of the many side hustles you can pursue. The key is to find a way to monetize your skills and passions in a way that aligns with your goals and values.

Let’s Turn Your Dream into a Reality!

We have seen side hustles turn into full-time ventures that have grown more than the founder could ever imagine. Once you are ready to go, our trained company formation specialists are prepared to help you incorporate your business. Contact us today for a free initial consultation.

Don’t forget to try our Cost Calculator to get an estimate for your business setup in Dubai.

Gilbert Sakr

Do you need help in business setup or looking to start a business in Dubai? Here you will find all the information and business ideas you need for starting your own company in Dubai.

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