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Hays: skilled labor is in more serious shortage in China

ABOUT 97 percent of businesses in China are still struggling to find the skilled individuals they need and the situation is worse than ever, according to a recent report released by Hays PLC, an international recruiting company.

The report highlights salary and recruiting trends drawn from a survey with more than 3,000 employers across Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore, which is said to represent six million employees and more than 1,200 job roles.

“The ability to attract and retain the best talent always provides a company with a competitive advantage, but in 2017 with skill shortage persisting and significant changes and challenges on the horizon, it is more important than ever,” Christine Wright, managing director of Hays in Asia.

The skill shortage in China has been well documented and as business operations are likely to be affected throughout the year, employers are encouraged to invest in trainings and development of staff and to become more strategic in their talent management practices.

Simon Lance, Hays’ managing director in China, said that areas like Internet, big data, VR and AR are most affected as the shortage is global in those industries and Chinese employers are competing globally for related talents.

The report also reveals that China remains the standout in Asia for salary increase with 45 percent of the employers expecting to increase salaries by 6 to 10 percent.

But there is still a gap between the salary expectations of employees and what the employers are offering. About 51 percent of the employees surveyed in China are expecting more than 10 percent increases, only 11 percent of the employers will award increases with such a rapid growth.

The survey also found that China’s workforce is the least culturally diverse in the surveyed region with foreign employees comprising 6 percent of the whole, while it is 21 percent in Singapore and the other areas ranging from 9 to 12 percent.

Gender diversity in China has improved slightly with women holding an average of 35 percent of management roles, compared to 32 percent last year. It is higher than the other countries in Asia, such as Japan and Singapore.


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