Getting Hired in China with HiredChina

1. What is HiredChina?

HiredChina is one of China’s leading online job search and recruitment portals specializing in jobs for foreign talents. We offer job search, recruitment, career consulting, and internship services, specializing in providing foreign talents with the best career opportunities available around China. Our jobs database is rapidly growing and spans a variety of industries, cities, and career levels. Our international team will help remove the barriers (including language barriers!) foreigners often face on their job search in China.

2. Why do Chinese companies hire foreigners?

Chinese companies are expanding worldwide. Foreigners bring new perspectives, languages, business intelligence, and cultural understanding. For a company to be truly global, it must have a global staff. Hiring foreigners can be a strategic decision for Chinese employers. Because there’s currently a talent shortage in China, employers will also look abroad to find the industry expertise they need.

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3. What are Chinese companies looking for in a foreign employee? What can foreigners bring to a Chinese company?

For a foreign employee to contribute the most to a Chinese company, he or she must be adaptable, open-minded, culturally aware, and committed. One of the most common complaints we hear from our partner HR managers is that their foreign employees do not attempt to integrate with the team or adapt their behaviors to match Chinese cultural norms. Employers also appreciate when their foreign employees are committed to their role and willing to stay long-term, as opposed to leaving as soon as they receive another offer with a higher salary.

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4. What are some of the common mistakes that foreigners make when job-hunting in China?

The simplest one we see is that some foreigners won’t put photos on their CVs before sending them out. In some countries, photos on resumes are not encouraged, but Chinese companies do prefer to see candidates’ headshots.

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5. What industries need foreigners the most in China? What industries have the most foreign job opportunities?

For Chinese multinationals, foreign marketing/sales staff are incredibly important. Candidates with digital marketing experience on foreign platforms are in high demand to help Chinese brands expand globally. Not only native English speakers are needed – there are many opportunities for foreign nationals in various countries. Other industries where foreigners are needed include logistics, human resources, hospitality, information technology, and, of course, language education. We talk about the other industries in detail on the HiredChina blog.

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6. What can job seekers do to improve their chances of getting hired?

Just like at home, job seekers can improve their chances of success by tailoring their CVs to the position they want, making a good impression at the interview, and following up accordingly. Displaying their adaptability, intentions to work long-term, and Mandarin skills in their interactions with the hiring manager will only help.

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7.What are the biggest challenges in working in HR in China?

As I mentioned, there’s a talent shortage in China and recruiters’ biggest headache is finding qualified applicants with the industry expertise they require. As a direct result of the talent shortage, Chinese employers will compete for strong candidates by offering higher salaries/larger benefits packages. When employees leave for better packages, it creates high turnover. That’s why it’s so important for candidates to emphasize that they’re committed to the position when searching for jobs.

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8. What advice would you give to foreigners who want to get out of teaching?

There are many good opportunities in the education sector in China that span beyond English instruction. However, if you’d like to change career paths, the job search process is similar to elsewhere – you can apply online (through our platform, for example), search through a recruiter (sign up on HiredChina to have our recruiters review your CV), cold-call employers, or get a referral. It’s better to do this sooner rather than later, as employers in other industries may not regard English teaching as relevant experience. If you have professional experience in your field of interest or strong Mandarin skills, it’s a good idea to emphasize those on your CV.

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9. Are there advantages to foreigners who have HSK certification seeking jobs in China compared to those who do not?

Both foreign multinationals and Chinese companies are increasingly seeking candidates with, at the very least, elementary to intermediate Mandarin skills. Having HSK certification gives your employer a solid indicator of your level and shows your commitment to learning the language. It’s an asset to any CV.

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Interested in finding a new job or internship in China? Check out Hired China.

Kristen Carusos is from Atlanta, Georgia in the United States. She graduated from Kennesaw State University with a major in International Affairs and a minor in French. She studied abroad in China for the first time in Shanghai in 2010 and again in 2011 at Beijing Language and Culture University. She graduated and moved to Beijing in 2012 and has been studying Chinese since then. She works in the Marketing Department at the Sinology Institute.