The China talent outlook for 2024

Content Team

With Talent Expert, Mia

We recently asked Mia Lin, Client Solutions Manager, our China-based talent expert, to share her views on the talent outlook in China for 2024.  

The China talent market is facing the juxtaposition of both a pressing demand for skilled technical workers, as well as an oversupply of graduates and white-collar professionals. Nevertheless, experts maintain an optimistic outlook on employment and incomes in 2024 while company profits recover. We asked our talent expert Mia Lin, what it means for employers in 2024.  

Today's employers are not just seeking to fill positions; they're committed to actively building a workforce that possesses the skills necessary for the future. This shift underscores a deliberate effort to invest in and nurture a dynamic pool of talent that helps organizations thrive in a changing world.”

The top skill sets in demand

China is still facing an oversupply of both university graduates and white-collar workers. According to Mia, skill shortages in new energy, intelligent manufacturing, and the semiconductor industry will particularly stand out when looking at increased needs for talent.

  • Electric vehicles

    China passed Japan as the world’s largest automotive exporter in the first quarter of 2023, thanks to its growing dominance in electric vehicles. Battery-powered vehicles will account for 30 per cent of China’s total car exports this year. Car design and manufacturing-related roles are in particularly high demand.

  • Intelligent manufacturing

    The Chinese government has set out to become the world’s largest intelligent manufacturing application market. Shortages of talent with the right digital skill sets in intelligent manufacturing are forecast to grow to 5.5 million by 2025

  • Semiconductors

    Last year, China ramped up efforts to develop home-grown semiconductor talent. Despite an increase in university enrolments in industry-funded courses, and an influx of talent recruited overseas, China is battling a shortage of an estimated 200,000 industry workers.  

Attracting talent

In a market where employers are competing for talent, employers are turning to offers such as flexibility, job stability, and increased salary packages.  

“Today’s top talent is discerning in their career choices, placing heightened importance on factors such as work stability, a genuine care for employees, and flexible working arrangements in both time and location. In a dynamic job market, attracting talent requires a comprehensive approach that goes beyond traditional compensation structures. It involves a holistic package that aligns with their desire for stability, a supportive workplace culture, and flexible work models.” 

Trends to watch

In addition to employers reviewing their offerings to attract more talent, Mia recognizes some additional trends across the China talent market for 2024:   

  • Digitalization and technology talent demand

    Accelerated digital transformation across sectors is driving demand for professionals in the highly competitive areas of artificial intelligence (AI), big data, data security and software/hardware.  

  • The flexible workforce

    As the global economy remains unpredictable, many organizations are looking to cut costs. Flexible work models with contractors (also known as a contingent workforce model) will be mutually beneficial for organizations and early- to mid-career talent looking to build their skills while leveraging more flexible ways of working. This trend was looked at closely by our Talent Expert Lucy in our UK talent market outlook.

  • Soft skills

    Amidst skill shortages, more organizations will turn to a skills-based approach to hiring and development pathways for talent already in their organization. As such, soft skills become more important, particularly resilience, a learning mindset, and the ability to multi-task are highly sought after. 

The talent market in China 2024, will see a skills-driven talent market with a large focus on employee benefits and technological advancement. As we’ve seen in previous years, the dynamic talent market can turn quickly, and adaptability and the backing of a strategic recruitment partner are key to staying ahead of the competition for talent.

Mia Lin, is highly experienced in the recruitment industry and has a deep understanding of organizational needs and the benefits an RPO can bring. Mia works with clients across the China region to transform their talent functions and shape the future of their businesses to achieve exceptional outcomes.  Do you want to talk about your hiring plans for 2024 in more detail? Get in touch with our experts here. 

Hudson RPO

Content Team

The Hudson RPO Content Team is made up of experts within the Talent Acquisition industry across the Americas, EMEA and APAC regions. They provide educational and critical business insights in the form of research reports, articles, news, videos, podcasts, and more. The team ensures high-quality content that helps all readers make talent decisions with confidence.

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