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At-risk bonuses: Chinese more willing to back themselves through performance-based bonuses

Updated: 14 Apr 2016

63 per cent of Chinese professionals would take a base salary cut for the opportunity to potentially earn more through performance-based bonuses, according to a new poll by recruiting experts Hays.

 In the online poll of 480 people in mainland China , Hays found that 49 per cent would take a base salary cut of up to 20 per cent in order to receive a bonus based on their performance. A further 14 per cent would take a cut of more than 20 per cent for that same opportunity.

 The final 37 per cent prefer not to roll the dice and would not cut their base salary in order to potentially earn more through a bonus based on performance.

 “Skilled professionals in China are very confident in their own capabilities and their capacity to achieve high results,” says Christine Wright, Managing Director of Hays in Asia. “They are therefore willing to bet on themselves and sacrifice a portion of their base pay for the chance to earn more in a bonus based on their performance.

 “That’s a strong sign of a confident talent pool who feel the local market gives them the opportunities they need to excel. Such a positive market encourages people to take risks, be innovative, trust in their own competency, and take advantage of their expertise. Our poll result also points to Chinese professionals’ high entrepreneurial spirit and pro-activeness in the workforce.”  

 According to Christine, such bonuses work best when there is clear and open communication from both sides of the employment equation. “Both the employer and employee need to be aware of the objectives that must be met in order to qualify for the bonus, which is why they are often tied to performance appraisals.

 “The minimum performance expectations must be made clear, otherwise an employee may not feel they are being rewarded fairly for their performance. Communication is essential to make sure both sides are fully aware of the objectives that need to be met in order for performance-related bonuses to be awarded,” she said.

The poll was conducted on Hays’ website between April and July 2015.

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

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

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 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 31 December 2014 Hays employed 8,748 staff operating from 244 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.