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November 18, 2009

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Home » Metro » Education

Salary outlook good for grads, but job market is competitive

SALARIES for next year's university graduates are expected to remain the same as this year, human-resource experts said yesterday.

That's a lot better than the sharp drop that last year's grads experienced in the midst of the financial crisis.

This year, graduates with a bachelor's degree are earning an average monthly salary of 1,864 yuan (US$275). For those with master's degrees, that's 2,731 yuan.

Both figures dropped by about 10 percent from 2008, according to China International Intellectech Shanghai Corp, a leading local human resource company.

PhD degree holders and graduates of colleges below the university level also saw salaries drop, but not as severely: 2.64 percent and 6.55 percent, respectively.

"Graduates with bachelor and master degrees are the major part in the recruitment market and they are most affected in the financial crisis," said Li Shuang, an Intellectech consultant.

The number of graduate students next year will be about 20 percent more than this year's 158,000. It will bring more pressure to the graduate job market than this year, according to Li.

"Although there is a trend that the city's job market is stepping out of the economic turndown, many companies still limit their headcount plans for fresh graduates," Li said. "Most of the companies prefer skilled employees. They don't want to spend a lot of money on inexperienced ones who need training."

Students said they didn't expect a high salary. Many take a dim view of this year's job market.

"I didn't care how much they will pay me because I know it is my first job and the whole market remains grim," said Vivien Zhang, a graduate student from East China Normal University.

She came a long way to attend a job fair yesterday at Shanghai University of Finance and Economics. She prepared 100 copies of her resume and wanted to submit one to every company.

"What I want is just a job," the graduate said.

Huge crowds and long queues lined up at every stand at the job fair, as students urgently competed for comparatively few vacancies.

The fair has attracted more than 12,000 graduate students from different universities around the city. Some 120 companies are participating.

Of those who have graduated this year but remain unemployed, 48.5 percent of them said they are willing to accept jobs with salary under 2,000 yuan, much lower than the average amount, according to a survey done by East China Normal University.

Shanghai Human Resources and Social Security Bureau is also holding a recruitment drive for graduates this week. The drive includes online recruitment services and a job fair this Saturday at 620 Zhongshan Road W.

Altogether, 100 companies will participate, hoping to fill more than 1,000 positions.


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