In 2018, about 8.2 million students graduated from Chinese universities. According to the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security (MHRSS), that number increased by 140,000 to 8.34 million in 2019. This is an indication that the number of skilled workers in the Chinese labor market will grow consistently over the coming years. The skills will also continue to get diverse, while competition for the available jobs can be expected to jump through the roof.
The good news is that as the population of skilled young Chinese workers keeps growing, more and more new multinational companies are opening up shop in the country. For newly grads, this means numerous career opportunities as the market is open for new and skilled talents willing to join the workforce.
How is the labor market in China?
Economies in all provinces of China are at their strongest now. The country’s population is also growing steadily, providing a sufficient market for both locally-produced and imported goods and services.
And because demand and supply are directly proportional, suppliers have a huge task of satisfying the growing demand. Manufacturers are opening new firms by the day, the tech industry is getting bigger and bigger, and the agricultural sector is getting more and more lucrative.
All these facts combined point to the bigger fact that employers in China have a lot of job opportunities to offer new graduates.
The abundance of employment opportunities in China doesn’t mean that the competition for jobs is less fierce. As a young graduate, you need to package your skills and talents in a way that helps you to stand out from the huge crowd of qualified job seekers. Aspire to be the best in your area of work so that you can become more employable.
And because employees with an international background are also competing for the same jobs with you, it is imperative that you go a step higher and probably acquire a postgraduate degree. As for the international graduates, your competition in China is well cut out for you. But, the process is also easier now for these grads because they could simply register with recruiting agencies, such as Sky Executive, that have contacts with international companies willing to invest in the country and could recommend them to these potential employers.
Which jobs are most marketable in China?
Most local and international companies are investing largely in pharmaceuticals, engineering, telecommunications, textiles, informatics, mining, medicine and transportation sectors. Central China is also witnessing a growing investment in agriculture. These sectors seem to have an unending hunger for new talents.
The tourism and travel sector in western China is also coming to life, necessitating new skills, especially graduates who can speak Mandarin and at least one international language.
Lastly, companies that are trying to expand in China are always looking for translation experts to help them with their localization plans. This means more jobs for language and linguistics experts.
Tips for getting a job in China as an international new graduate
If you are a new graduate seeking employment in China, it will be important that you learn as much Chinese culture as you can before appearing for any interviews.
You will need to understand the business culture in the country in order to know how to behave in which situations. Learning the culture also means familiarizing yourself with the local language as that will help you eliminate any possible clumsy misunderstandings. With that done, take the following five easy steps:
First, start searching for Chinese jobs both online and through international recruitment agencies that are based in your home country. There are also companies with offices both in China and in your home country. Apply for a job with them as well.
Second, take a language course in order to master Mandarin and a few more languages. That is important for your confidence. Employers also translate that as not only a show of commitment to the Chinese culture but also as a show of the seriousness you’ve attached to the application.
Third, if you are called for an interview, make sure you arrive on time. The Chinese value punctuality more than almost everything else.
Fourth, make a few Chinese friends and ask for their perspective on different aspects of life. They will help you fit in if you get the job.
Finally, remember to apply for a work visa (Z visa).
Overall, China is slowly becoming one of the countries with the highest potential for employment. With thousands of newly grads graduating from its universities, and also graduates coming from abroad, it is a place with a lot of opportunities. Given its growing market demand, as well as the number of investments, it is evident that the country’s market is growing and so is the demand for skilled labor, which presents an amazing opportunity for newly grads who are skilled and talented.
Elliot Rhodes is enthusiastic about everything related to money and investing. A financial analyst and instructor, he enjoys using what he’s learned from 10 years of studying business and money to help others achieve financial stability.
Contributor writers at TUN are academic professionals, thought leaders and industry experts who have stories or wisdom to share.