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China’s skill shortage conundrum

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Nearly half of 400 Chinese employers (48%) expect staff to change roles over the next year, while a majority are anticipating a skills shortage.

The skills shortage is expected to place pressure on salaries, with 68% of employers believing wages will rise above the inflation rate this year, a report by Michael Page found.

“The limited availability of exceptional professionals is likely to be exacerbated by an increase in staff loyalty and the ongoing shift for employees to stay with an employer for longer in a role and take advantage of training and development opportunities,” Richard King, managing director of PageGroup in North and Eastern China, said.

Companies in China are being forced to review their outlook, processes and behaviours, as the domestic market slows down slightly.

With employers concerned about employee retention, 70% of companies are turning to offering staff training and development, thus driving up demand for HR professionals with skills and experience in the area.

“Along with salary increases, work-life balance options and employee benefits remain important and based on the survey findings, employers intend to focus on team building and offsite activities to facilitate work-life balance, and healthcare/health insurance as an employee benefit,” King said.

A third of employers identified recognition and rewards as the biggest employee retention tool, followed by a structured career progression (28%) and a strong company culture (20%).

Companies will also be providing work-life balance benefits such as team building and offsite activities (77%), flexible working arrangements (42%), and maternity and paternity leave (37%) to better manage talent this year.

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