Skip to content
Hays - Recruiting experts worldwide
  1. I am
    I am

China faces shortage of highly-skilled professionals as employers focus on growth


Updated: 14 Apr 2016

Shared Services Centre Managers, Front-End Developers and HR Business Partners are just some of the professionals in high demand as organisations continue to focus on growth in China, says recruiting experts Hays.  


In its latest Hays Quarterly Report for October to December 2014, the recruiter says more companies are looking to build a presence in the China market as the country’s GDP continues to expand at a rate of over 7 per cent per year.


“China is currently in the process of implementing wide ranging economic and social reforms that have potential to stimulate economic growth and increase opportunities for foreign direct investment,” says Simon Lance, Regional Director of Hays in China.


“Also, the growing disposable income of the Chinese consumer will create further opportunities for companies selling goods and services.”


The recruiter says demand for professionals will grow across a broad range of industries in the months ahead as many companies have now finished restructuring their organisations and are focusing on gaining market share.


The growing demand for talent is supported by findings in the 2014 Hays Global Skills Index, which revealed that China received a high score of 8.4 for overall wage pressure, showing that wages are increasing above historic levels and threatening the country’s standing as a global manufacturing power.


According to Hays, sectors seeing jobs growth include accountancy & finance, banking, education, human resources, IT, life sciences, manufacturing & operations and sales & marketing.


So are employers hiring in your profession? A selection of skills in demand from the Hays Quarterly Report  for October to December 2014 follows:


Hays Accountancy & Finance

  • Shared Services Centre Managers As multinational corporations increasingly centralise their supporting functions by using shared services centres, candidates with leadership, people management and project implementation experience are highly sought.
  • Commercial Managers There has recently been an increase in demand for finance business partners who can assist company leaders with managing change and executing new strategies. These candidates need strong communication skills as they are required to work closely with operational leaders across business units.


Hays Banking

  • Investment Banking Research Analysts Investment banks are becoming more aware of the skills shortages in China and are being more proactive about recruiting young talent, with a view to developing these Analysts into future business leaders.
  • Corporate Banking Relationship Managers In the corporate banking sector Relationship Managers continue to be in high demand as most foreign banks are still in their growth phase and are looking to generate new client accounts.


Hays Education

  • Online Education experts Education is a growing industry in China that likes to adopt new technologies. Along with the trend for e-learning, there is demand for experts in online education programs who have knowledge of sales and marketing.
  • International Education specialists The number of K-12 schools continues to grow year on year, creating high demand for professionals who specialise in international curricula such as the A-Level and International Baccalaureate qualifications.


Hays Human Resources  

  • Administration Managers Managers with demonstrated leadership abilities who can cover indirect sourcing, and have strong capabilities in setting up policies and systems are highly sought.
  • HR Managers – Many small to mid-sized foreign companies are looking to hire HR Managers to set up new HR systems or to help foster business growth. Candidates are required to be ‘hands-on’ but at the same time strategic, so that they can provide HR solutions and meet business needs long term.


Hays Information Technology

  • UI/Front-End Developers - With mobile internet becoming more popular in China, the demand for UI/Front-End Developers is consequently growing. Candidates who can speak fluent English and have good technical skills are in particularly high demand.  
  • JAVA Engineers and Developers – The banking industry is still experiencing strong growth in Southern China, but the supply of candidates with JAVA skills remains limited. This is especially the case for candidates with good English language skills.


Hays Life Sciences

  • Biology and Medicinal Chemistry R&D specialists – A combination of economic, social and government driven factors have created an increase in drug discovery activities in China.  China is still viewed as a growing market for pharmaceutical companies and there is now greater focus on new products being developed locally. 
  • Strategic Planning professionals – There is currently a significant shortage of talent in the insurance sector that has experience in implementing strategy and demand is expected to remain high over the next quarter.


Hays Manufacturing & Operations

  • Purchasing/Sourcing Managers – Solid Purchasing Managers are in high demand to continuously support production while keeping costs under control.
  • Quality Managers – Quality specialists are in high demand as many manufacturing companies look to set up standard quality systems and quality control processes, which have become critical in the supply chain value stream.


Hays Sales & Marketing

  • Account Managers/Directors Employers intend to only hire Account Managers/Directors that perfectly match the requirements of the role. Companies have recovered from the financial crisis but are still very cautious when it comes to hiring new staff.
  • Digital Marketing professionals Digital marketing candidates with strong data analysis skills are in high demand. Professionals who have around 5-8 years of experience normally expect a significant salary increase when they change roles.


For more, please see the full Hays Quarterly Report at  


In China Hays operates from four local offices: Shanghai, Beijing, Suzhou and Guangzhou.


Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.


- Ends -


About Hays

Hays is the leading global specialist recruiting group. It is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide.


Hays Specialist Recruitment  (Shanghai) Co., Limited ("Hays China") operates across the public and private sector, dealing in permanent positions. Hays China’s eighteen specialisms span Accountancy & Finance, Banking, Architecture, Construction, Education, Engineering, Executive, Finance Technology, Human Resources, Hays Resource Management, Information Technology, Insurance, Life Sciences, Manufacturing & Operations, Oil & Gas, Property and Sales & Marketing.


Hays China operates four local offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Suzhou and Guangzhou. It is the local representative office for Hays plc, which is a global company. As at 30 June 2014 the Group employed 8,237 staff operating from 237 offices in 33 countries across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2014, Hays placed around 57,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 212,000 people into temporary assignments. 24% of Group net fees were generated in Asia Pacific.


Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Chile, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA.