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Monday, August 1, 2016, 09:43

Time to raise a toast for pay hikes in 2016-17

By Zhao Yanrong
Time to raise a toast for pay hikes in 2016-17
Jobseekers submit their resumes to prospective employers at a job fair in Yiwu, Zhejiang province. (Gong Xianming / For China Daily)

Salaries for experienced and skilled employees in China are expected to rise between 8 percent and 15 percent this year and the next, while talents with additional language skills and experience can expect salary hike up to 25 percent year-on-year, according to a report.

The figures are from the China Salary Guide for 2016-17, released by Shanghai-based ZW HR Consulting on July 7.

The guide covers wide-ranging industries and sectors across first- and second-tier cities in China: accounting, banking and finance, aerospace, engineering, chemicals, energy, consumer goods, human resources, IT, legal, life sciences, manufacturing, supply chains and real estate.

The most popular recruitment roles for 2016 will be in functions like IT, sales, marketing and R&D, while real estate, life sciences and banking are set to be prime sectors of demand this year, the guide reported.

Candidates with an R&D and IT product design background are the most difficult to find, and finding talents in Guangzhou, and some second- and third-tier cities such as Ningbo, Fuzhou, and Nanjing can be challenging, it said.

According to a survey released in March by, an online job-hunting platform, the strong recruitment demand and significant talent scarcity led the average salary of IT industry top the list of white-collar workers' annual pay this year with 98,470 yuan (US$14,730).

"The national 'Internet Plus' strategy has been carried into an overall development stage, which helped the IT industry lead the average pay list nationwide. Under such high-speed industrial growth, however, the shortage of talent by up to 30 percent is much significant than in other industries," said Wang Yi, deputy general manager of

Besides IT, life sciences-related jobs will also see high demand, as multinational corporations and large local firms continue to aggressively expand their presence in China.

Life sciences professionals in China can expect a 5 to 13 percent salary growth, the ZW report said.

Meanwhile, China's in-house legal counsel hiring trend is on the rise, as market factors push corporations to beef up their internal pool for both legal and compliance counsels.

Salaries for supply chain professionals are expected to climb by 10 to 15 percent this year, it said.

"Candidates with international exposure, good language skills, market knowledge and who are well-disciplined will continue to receive multiple offers as well as counter-offers from their current employer," said Frank Yu, chairman of ZW HR Consulting.

The HR consulting firm found that the majority of candidates are open to hearing about new opportunities, and the mid-level to senior professionals are asking about potential opportunities in the job market.

"Even though starting salaries continue to rise, jobseekers are sending out a very clear message that remuneration is not the only incentive they are after," Yu said.

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