Job Seekers on the move in Mainland China in 2017 are in search of Better Salary or Benefit Packages

Published on 2017-03-15

Job seekers in mainland China have nominated better salary or benefit packages as the main reason why they wish to switch jobs in 2017. Job security was the number one reason why employees in mainland China will stay with their current employer.

The annual Hays Asia Salary Guide reveals the results of candidates and employers surveyed from across mainland China, Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore. The Guide also provides salary ranges for more than 1,200 roles based on research from 3,000 employers representing six million employees.

According to the tenth annual Guide, 34 per cent of candidates across all countries are actively looking for a new job while 46 per cent are open to new opportunities.

In addition to seeking better salary or benefit packages (63 per cent) compared to 41 per cent last year, the other key motivators for job hunting in mainland China are:

  • Lack of career progression (52 per cent)
  • Seeking new challenges (46 per cent)
  • Lack of training or development opportunities (28 per cent)
  • The management style & company culture (24 per cent)
  • Poor work-life balance (17 per cent)
  • Work location (16 per cent)
  • Concerns about job security (14 per cent Other (5 per cent)

On a country level, salary or benefit package was the main reason why job seekers are looking to switch jobs in Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore whilst in Japan, a desire to seek new challenges was the main reason why job seekers are currently looking to switch jobs.

Key reasons candidates in mainland China want to stay with their current employer are:

  • Job security (41 per cent)
  • Salary or benefit package (34 per cent)
  • Work-life balance (29 per cent)
  • Work location (29 per cent)
  • Career progression (25 per cent)
  • Training or development opportunities (25 per cent)
  • The management style & company culture (22 per cent)
  • New challenges (17 per cent)
  • Other (5 per cent)

On a country level, work-life balance was nominated by candidates in Malaysia, Hong Kong and Singapore as the main reason why they wish to stay with their current employer. In Japan, career progression is the key retention motivator.

Other key candidate trends from mainland China in the 2017 Guide include:

  • 39 per cent are happy with their salary, bonus, benefits package and 61 per cent are unhappy
  • 69 per cent are willing to relocate to a different country to secure a new role
  • 65 per cent believe their job performance is fairly evaluated
  • 37 per cent believe there is scope for career progression in their current role
  • 20 per cent say there is no scope for career progression in their current job and 43 per cent are unsure
  • 37 per cent spend three to five hours of personal time a week enhancing their professional skills

“This year’s Guide tells very different stories about why employees in mainland China leave a job and why they stay,” says Simon Lance, Managing Director of Hays mainland China. 

“We have seen a significant increase in the number of job hunters motivated by salary and benefits but for many of those expecting to stay with their current employer, job security is worth more than financial gain.”

Asked about their salary expectations, 3 per cent of candidates in mainland China expect an increase of up to three per cent only during their next review whilst 5 per cent expect no increase at all. 81 per cent expect a salary increase of more than six per cent.

Of employers surveyed in mainland China, 7 per cent plan to award salary increases of up to three per cent only. 5 per cent of employers in mainland China have no plans to award salary increases this year whereas 56 per cent plan to offer more than six per cent. 

During the last salary review period, 8 per cent of employers in mainland China awarded increases of up to three per cent and 7 per cent provided no salary increases. 56 per cent of employers gave salary increases of six per cent and more.

“While those planning to stay with their employer have fairly realistic salary expectations, employers will have to be mindful of the higher salary expectations of the candidates they are trying to attract, especially those companies with hard to fill roles,” Simon says.  

Of employers in mainland China surveyed for the 2017 Guide, 53 per cent believe skills shortages have the potential to hamper effective business operations this year and 44 per cent expect shortages to have some impact on their business operations.

Get your copy of the 2017 Hays Asia Salary Guide by visiting www.hays.cn/en/salary-guide or by contacting your local Hays office.