Construction Jobs in Saudi Arabia

Date: 27 Jun 2022

Would you like to be part of a project that has already brought to light fossils from 80 million years ago? Or a first-of-its-kind desalination plant powered by 100% renewable energy? What about a sustainable golf course designed by legendary pro Jack Nicklaus?

These are just a few of the more than 5,200 construction projects underway in Saudi Arabia.

Construction projects in Saudi include contracts in the commercial, residential, industrial, energy, and infrastructure sectors. If you’re looking for construction jobs internationally, you should look here first.

Learn more about the construction industry in Saudi Arabia and how to find your perfect job.

Working in the Construction Industry in Saudi Arabia

Construction jobs in Saudi Arabia are plentiful. However, the openings for expats aren’t entry-level construction jobs.

The Saudi government policy of Saudization (Nitaqat) limits the number of construction jobs open to expats. Restrictions on hiring foreign workers are tightest for lower-skilled, entry-level jobs.

Employers can more easily get work visas for high-skilled workers. Employers can argue that they couldn’t find Saudi workers with enough training and experience.

For this reason, the type of construction jobs hiring in Saudi Arabia are usually higher-level positions. Openings may include:

  • Commercial manager
  • Planning manager
  • Program operations specialist
  • Project director
  • Project manager

Although fewer jobs are open to foreign workers than in the past, you can still find many excellent opportunities.

Construction Jobs in Saudi Arabia

In general, you’ll find some of the best opportunities for construction jobs in Riyadh. Jeddah is another city with a strong jobs market for construction workers. Significant investment in construction projects from the Saudi government is fuelling demand for construction workers.

Vision 2030 is one important driver of this growth. The Vision 2030 initiative aims to:

  • Reinforce economic and investment activities
  • Increase non-oil international trade
  • Promote a more welcoming image of the Kingdom

The Saudi government created the Public Investment Fund as part of Vision 2030. The fund is financing several large-scale, complex, multi-purpose construction projects. These “giga-projects” include:

  • NEOM
  • Red Sea Project
  • Qiddiya

The Vision 2030 projects will also require roads and other infrastructure construction. Those jobs are in addition to the jobs directly related to each project.


NEOM is a megacity that the Saudi government is building along the coast of the Red Sea. The site covers 26,500 sq km in Tabuk Province. The smart city will be home to millions of residents and an important tourist destination.

The NEOM project focuses on sustainability, technology, and innovation. Due to its size and scope, many types of construction managers are necessary. Jobs are available in sectors including geothermal energy, water, mobility, and general infrastructure.

Red Sea Project

The Red Sea Project is a luxury ecotourism project on the Red Sea coast. It will cover 28,000 sq km in Tabuk Province.

The project is moving forward in several phases. The new international airport is scheduled to open in 2022, and 16 hotels should be complete by the end of 2023.

Types of open positions include senior surveyors, construction managers, and planning managers.


Qiddiya is an entertainment megaproject located 45 km from central Riyadh. It will have 223 sq km of developed area in the 367 sq km site. Qiddiya is one of the projects driving construction jobs in Saudi Riyadh.

Qiddiya will feature entertainment, sports, and arts facilities including:

  • Six Flags Qiddiya
  • Water theme park
  • Golf course
  • Aquatic centre
  • Stadium
  • Performing arts centre
  • Multiplex cinema

Construction jobs at Qiddiya are currently going exclusively through project contractors. The need for construction professionals will be ongoing, though, as the project moves forward.

Getting a Residence Permit and Work Visa for Saudi Arabia

To work legally in Saudi Arabia, you need a residence permit (Iqama) that allows you to work. The first step after you find a construction job is to apply for an employment visa.

You can apply for the visa online, by mail, or in person at a Saudi embassy. You can also apply through an authorised travel agency.

Sponsorship Letter and Employment Contract

Your employer must first have authorisation from the Saudi Ministry of Labor to hire foreign personnel. Your employer then needs to write a sponsorship letter for you.

You need to submit a copy of your employment contract. You and the sponsoring employer need to have signed the contract.

The sponsorship letter and employment contract need certification from the Saudi Chamber of Commerce and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Proof of Education

You need to submit a certified and notarised copy of your university degree/diploma. The Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission must authenticate your diploma.

Other Documents

The visa application requires various other documents, including:

  • Digital power of attorney from your employer
  • Visa referral note from the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Medical report from a licensed physician
  • Police report no older than six months before the date of application

Your passport must have at least six months of validity left. It also needs at least two consecutive empty visa pages.

Getting the Residence Permit

Within 90 days of your arrival in Saudi Arabia, your employer needs to apply for a residence permit. The Iqama includes your work permit. It serves as the standard form of identification in Saudi Arabia.

Residence permits are valid for one or two years, depending on your employment contract. Your employer will need to renew your permit if you’ll still be working in Saudi after the first permit expires.

Why Look for Construction Jobs in Saudi?

Jobs in construction in Saudi Arabia can be rewarding personally and financially. The projects in Vision 2030 are incredibly ambitious. They’re career-defining projects that will leave a lasting legacy.

Saudi Arabia has a high standard of living. The country has a good healthcare system and quality schools. You have many shopping and dining options.

Saudi has world-famous landmarks and beautiful beaches. You’re only a short flight away from the rest of the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.

Having international experience on your CV demonstrates your ability to adapt and succeed in a global environment. Working in Saudi Arabia can bring career and personal benefits.

Finding Construction Jobs in Saudi Arabia

Construction jobs in Saudi Arabia are available to expats. Projects large and small need experienced leaders in a variety of roles. The experience will boost your career and give you a unique personal opportunity as well.

SSA Group can help you find the right construction job. Our recruitment specialists have been placing top candidates in quality positions for more than 30 years. Contact us today and take the next step in your career.

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