China White-collar Average Salary Rises Slightly in the Fourth Quarter of 2017

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BEIJING, Jan. 15, 2018 — Zhaopin Limited (“Zhaopin” or the “Company”), a leading career platform in China focused on connecting users with relevant job opportunities through their career lifecycle, released its 2017 fourth-quarter report on China labor market supply and demand for white-collar workers. While the competition for jobs was relatively stable in the fourth quarter, the average monthly salary for white-collar workers went up slightly to reach RMB7,789, representing a 2.5% increase over the previous quarter.

Fourth-Quarter of 2017 China White-Collar Labor Market Highlights:

  • The average monthly salary for white-collar workers reached RMB7,789 in the fourth quarter of 2017, up 2.5% over the third quarter.
  • Beijing continued to be the city with the highest pay in the fourth quarter of 2017, with an average monthly salary of RMB10,310, up from RMB9,900 in the third quarter.
  • Competition for jobs among white-collar workers remained stable in the fourth quarter of 2017, with an average of 31 applications per job vacancy, compared with 30.4 applications in the third quarter.
  • Real estate/construction/building materials/engineering became the most competitive sector for job seekers in the fourth quarter of 2017, with 45.1 applications per vacancy.
  • The most competitive occupation in the fourth quarter of 2017 was software/internet development/system integration with 93 applications per vacancy.

Average salary edging up

Based on online job postings in 37 key cities in China compiled by Zhaopin, the average monthly salary for white-collar workers reached RMB7,789 in the fourth quarter of 2017, up 2.5% over the third quarter. As white-collar workers were waiting for annual reviews and year-end bonuses, they had relatively low intention to change jobs in the fourth quarter, and employers had to offer higher salaries to fill urgently needed positions.

Average monthly salary for white-collar workers

Quarter

Average salary
(RMB)

Change over
previous quarter

Q4 2016

7,606

1.0%

Q1 2017

7,665

0.8%

Q2 2017

7,376

– 3.8%

Q3 2017

7,599

3.0%

Q4 2017

7,789

2.5%

Among job postings in the fourth quarter of 2017, 32.6% of positions offered monthly salaries between RMB4,000 and 6,000, and 28.9% offered monthly salaries of more than RMB8,000. About 21.2% of positions offered monthly salaries between RMB6,000 and 8,000.

Breakdown of positions by monthly salaries in the fourth quarter of 2017

Salary (RMB)

Percentage of positions

Over 8,000

28.9 %

6,000 to 8,000

21.2%

4,000 to 6,000

32.6%

2,000 to 4,000

16.5%

Below 2,000

0.9%

Beijing continued to be the city with the highest pay in the fourth quarter of 2017, with an average monthly salary of RMB10,310, up from RMB9,900 in the third quarter. Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hangzhou and Ningbo retained their rankings among the top five. Dongguan climbed to 6th in the ranking with an average monthly salary of RMB8,023 in the fourth quarter, up from 8th in the previous quarter.

Average monthly salary for cities in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

City

Average
monthly salary
(RMB)

Ranking

City

Average
monthly salary
(RMB)

1

Beijing

10,310

20

Chengdu

7,185

2

Shanghai

9,655

21

Nanchang

7,182

3

Shenzhen

9,030

22

Fuzhou

7,166

4

Hangzhou

8,434

23

Wuxi

7,154

5

Ningbo

8,062

24

Jinan

7,056

6

Dongguan

8,023

25

Changsha

7,048

7

Guangzhou

8,007

26

Tianjin

6,978

8

Urumqi

7,956

27

Hefei

6,940

9

Haikou

7,941

28

Zhengzhou

6,815

10

Nanning

7,738

29

Qingdao

6,787

11

Foshan

7,717

30

Shijiazhuang

6,635

12

Guiyang

7,630

31

Dalian

6,622

13

Nanjing

7,616

32

Yantai

6,604

14

Xiamen

7,600

33

Taiyuan

6,489

15

Suzhou

7,450

34

Xi'an

6,393

16

Kunming

7,411

35

Changchun

6,223

17

Chongqing

7,348

36

Harbin

6,199

18

Wuhan

7,266

37

Shenyang

6,173

19

Lanzhou

7,236

Funds/securities/futures/investment replaced professional services/consulting (finance and accounting, legal and Human Resources, etc.) as the best-paying sector in the fourth quarter of 2017 with an average monthly salary of RMB10,358. Intermediary service ranked 2nd in the fourth quarter with an average monthly salary of RMB10,292.

Top 10 highest paid sectors in the fourth quarter of 2017

Sector

Average monthly
salary (RMB)

Funds/securities/futures/investment

10,358

Intermediary service

10,292

Professional service/consulting (finance and accounting, legal and HR, etc.)

10,003

Energy/mineral/mining/smelting

9,439

Trust/warrant/auction/pawn

9,111

Real estate/construction/building materials/engineering

9,062

Cross-industry operation

8,865

Government/public service/non-profit

8,857

Aviation/aerospace research and manufacturing

8,665

Banking

8,584

The top three occupations with the highest monthly salaries in the fourth quarter of 2017 were senior management (RMB21,673), IT management/project coordination (RMB14,250) and securities/futures/investment management/service (RMB12,115).

Top 10 highest paid occupations in the fourth quarter of 2017

Occupation

Average monthly
salary (RMB)

Senior management

21,673

IT management/project coordination

14,250

Securities/futures/investment management/service

12,115

Civil servant/public institution/research institute

11,630

Sales management

11,058

Real estate development/broker/agency

10,962

Project management/project coordination

10,095

Software/internet development/system integration

9,991

Banking

9,859

Hardware development

9,566

Wholly foreign-owned enterprises offered the highest average monthly salary of RMB8,323 in the fourth quarter, followed by RMB8,247 for joint ventures and RMB8,196 for public companies.

Average monthly salaries from different types of companies

in the fourth quarter of 2017

Type of Company

Average
monthly salary (RMB)

Wholly foreign-owned enterprises

8,323

Joint ventures

8,247

Public companies

8,196

State-owned enterprises

8,182

Public institutions

8,067

Private companies

7,564

Larger companies offered higher salaries in the fourth quarter. Small and micro-sized companies were not competitive with relatively lower salaries.

Average monthly salaries for companies of different sizes

in the fourth quarter of 2017

Size of company by
employee numbers

Average monthly salary (RMB)

Below 20

7,154

20-99

7,486

100-499

7,636

500-999

7,988

1,000-9,999

8,376

Above 10,000

8,444

Job market competition remaining stable

Zhaopin publishes the quarterly competitive index for the labor market in China based on data collected from its online platform. The competitive index is calculated based on the number of resume applications divided by the number of job vacancies. For the fourth quarter of 2017, the competitive index was 31, which means there were an average of 31 applications per job vacancy, keeping stable from 30.4 in the third quarter of 2017.

The labor market competition remained at a relatively low level in the fourth quarter of 2017. Most white-collar workers were reluctant to change jobs in the quarter as they were waiting for year-end performance reviews and bonuses.

Competitive index

Quarter

Competitive index

Q4 2016

40.3

Q1 2017

44.6

Q2 2017

35.8

Q3 2017

30.4

Q4 2017

31.0

(Competitive index = number of applications/number of job vacancies)

Beijing was by far the most competitive city for white-collar workers, with a competitive index of 86.4 in the fourth quarter of 2017, up from 82.4 in the third quarter. Shenyang became the second most competitive city with a competitive index of 40.9 in the fourth quarter. The labor market in Shenyang was under pressure with more job seekers coming from industries with over-capacities and other cities in Northeast China.

Competitive index for cities in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

City

Index

Ranking

City

Index

1

Beijing

86.4

20

Hangzhou

19.2

2

Shenyang

40.9

21

Lanzhou

19.0

3

Shenzhen

39.2

22

Zhengzhou

18.2

4

Shanghai

37.2

23

Guiyang

17.6

5

Chengdu

35.8

24

Haikou

17.5

6

Tianjin

31.5

25

Jinan

17.4

7

Xi'an

30.8

26

Kunming

15.6

8

Dalian

30.0

27

Wuxi

14.4

9

Harbin

27.5

28

Urumqi

13.9

10

Changchun

25.3

29

Yantai

13.3

11

Chongqing

23.7

30

Hefei

12.6

12

Guangzhou

22.6

31

Nanchang

12.1

13

Taiyuan

21.1

32

Nanning

11.4

14

Changsha

20.6

33

Fuzhou

10.0

15

Wuhan

20.3

34

Xiamen

9.5

16

Shijiazhuang

19.8

35

Dongguan

9.5

17

Suzhou

19.8

36

Foshan

8.7

18

Nanjing

19.8

37

Ningbo

7.7

19

Qingdao

19.3

Competitive index = number of applications/number of job vacancies

First-tier cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Guangzhou) continued to be the top four cities with the highest job demand in the fourth quarter of 2017. Emerging first-tier cities, including Zhengzhou, Chengdu, Hangzhou, Nanjing and Xi'an, were also among the top ten cities with the highest job demand.

Top ten cities with the highest job demand

 in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

City

1

Beijing

2

Shanghai

3

Shenzhen

4

Guangzhou

5

Zhengzhou

6

Chengdu

7

Hangzhou

8

Xi'an

9

Nanjing

10

Wuhan

Eight of the top ten cities with most job applications in the fourth quarter of 2017 were also cities with the highest job demand, indicating that these cities with high job demand were also attracting job seekers. Chengdu was the most attractive emerging first-tier city for job seekers with its booming economy and comfortable living environment.

Top ten cities with most job applications

 in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

City

1

Beijing

2

Shanghai

3

Shenzhen

4

Chengdu

5

Guangzhou

6

Tianjin

7

Xi'an

8

Shenyang

9

Zhengzhou

10

Hangzhou

In terms of employer size, companies with 1,000 to 9,999 employees were the most competitive for job seekers, with an index of 41.2, followed by 34.8 for companies over 10,000 employees. The competition for positions in small and micro-sized companies remained low due to low brand recognition and high risk.

Competitive index for different size companies

 in the fourth quarter of 2017

Size of Company by
employee numbers

Index

Below 20

20.2

20-99

26.1

100-499

31.3

500-999

33.5

1,000-9,999

41.2

Over 10,000

34.8

Supply and demand by sector

In the fourth quarter of 2017, the internet/e-commerce sector continued to top the list with the most job vacancies, followed by education/training/college and real estate/construction/building materials/engineering sectors.

Top ten sectors with the highest job demand in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

Sector

1

Internet/e-commerce

2

Education/training/college

3

Real estate/construction/building materials/engineering

4

Computer software       

5

Funds/securities/futures/investment

6

Professional service/consulting (finance and accounting, legal and HR, etc.)

7

Trade/export and import

8

IT services (system/data/maintenance)

9

FMCG (food, drinks, alcohol and tobacco, and chemicals for daily use)

10

Medicine/biological engineering

Real estate/construction/building materials/engineering became the most competitive sector for job seekers in the fourth quarter of 2017, with 45.1 applications per vacancy. The government-imposed restrictions aimed to tame the overheating real estate market led to slack demand and increased labor supply.

Top ten most competitive sectors in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

Sector

Index

Ranking in previous quarter

1

Real estate/construction/building materials/engineering

45.1

4

2

Cross-industry operation

42.8

7

3

IT services (system/data/maintenance)

40.8

2

4

Online games

40.4

1

5

Computer software

38.6

5

6

Internet/e-commerce

38.4

3

7

Telecom/carrier operators/value-added service

38.0

6

8

Energy/mineral/mining/smelting

36.7

12

9

Aviation/aerospace research and manufacturing

36.2

8

10

Property management/business center

35.8

18

Insurance continued to be the least competitive sector in the fourth quarter of 2017, with 11.6 applications per vacancy, followed by 17.1 for intermediary service and 17.9 for office supplies and equipment.

Least competitive sectors in the fourth quarter of 2017

Sector

Index

Insurance

11.6

Intermediary service

17.1

Office supplies and equipment

17.9

Home furnishing/interior design/decoration

21.0

Printing/packaging/papermaking

21.2

Processing and manufacturing (raw material processing/mould)

21.5

Outsourcing service

21.8

Banking

23.6

Healthcare/nursing/beauty

23.7

Inspection/testing/authentication

23.8

The sectors with the most job applications in the fourth quarter of 2017 included internet/e-commerce, computer software and real estate/construction/building materials/engineering.

Top ten sectors with the most job applications in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

Sector

1

Internet/e-commerce

2

Computer software

3

Real estate/construction/building materials/engineering

4

Funds/securities/futures/investment

5

IT services (system/data/maintenance)

6

Education/training/college

7

Professional service/consulting (finance and accounting, legal and HR, etc.)

8

FMCG (food, drinks, alcohol and tobacco, and chemicals for daily use)

9

Media/publishing/movie and TV/culture communications

10

Medicine/biological engineering

Supply and demand by occupation

The top occupations with the most vacancies for white collar workers in the fourth quarter of 2017 were almost the same as in the third quarter of 2017, including sales, administration/logistics/secretary, and software/internet development/system integration.

Top ten occupations with the highest job demand in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

Occupation

1

Sales

2

Administration/logistics/secretary

3

Software/internet development/system integration

4

Education/training

5

Sales management

6

Customer service/pre-sales and after-sales support

7

Finance/auditing/tax

8

Human resources

9

Civil engineering/construction/decoration/municipal engineering

10

Internet products/operation management

The most competitive occupation in the fourth quarter of 2017 was software/internet development/system integration with 93 applications per vacancy, followed by 82.4 for IT quality management/testing/configuration management, and 62.6 for finance/auditing/tax.

Top 10 most competitive occupations in the fourth quarter of 2017

Ranking

Occupation

Index

Ranking in previous quarter

1

Software/internet development/system integration

93.0

1

2

IT quality management/testing/configuration management

82.4

2

3

Finance/auditing/tax

62.6

5

4

Transportation services

62.0

&

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