How international companies can succeed in the Chinese labor market

China frequently presents Western companies with challenges in HR management and recruiting. Although it is the most populous country in the world, many companies complain about difficulties in recruiting qualified specialists, especially in middle and upper management roles. With the “Made in China 2025” strategy and China’s planned transformation into an innovation-driven industrial nation, the demand for highly skilled workers will increase even further in the coming years. Expatriates, on the other hand, have to go through many legal hurdles to obtain a work permit in China.
International companies must be aware of cultural peculiarities in order to successfully recruit and retain employees. Social media is an important recruiting tool in China – but it is not Facebook or Twitter, but Chinese sites such as Wechat or Weibo on which employers should be present.

Anyone who has found suitable personnel must do their utmost to retain qualified employees in the long term. It is therefore of great importance to create incentives. Especially younger Chinese employees want to be appreciated or rewarded for their performance, e.g. through career opportunities abroad or performance-related bonuses.
Equally important are the different legal framework conditions and remuneration standards which must be observed. For companies new to the Chinese market, legal advice in these fields is highly advisable.

Our article in this year’s DCW Yearbook (in German only) explains in more detail with problems of personnel recruiting in China, what needs to be considered in this process and what opportunities are available to international companies. Furthermore, the article shows how to increase attractiveness as an employer in order to improve employee satisfaction.

You can download the article here or read the entire DCW yearbook on the DCW Website. Please note that this content is available in German only.

Richard Hoffmann

Richard Hoffmann is a partner at Ecovis Beijing China. Richard obtained an honors degree in law and worked in Germany, the United States, and China for various prestigious law firms prior to joining Ecovis. In addition to being a member of the board of Ecovis International, he is Supervisor for the China business of several respected German companies and shares his extensive knowledge to students by teaching commercial law in China at SRH Hochschule Heidelberg. He has published more than fifty articles in international magazines, frequently speaks at high profile events in China and abroad and is often invited as a legal expert by international TV stations.

Ecovis Beijing

Ecovis Beijing is the trusted tax and legal advisor to several embassies and official institutions in China. It specializes in mid-sized international companies and is focused on tax & legal advisory, accounting and auditing. If you’re interested in finding out more about tax and legal, don’t hesitate to sign up for our Newsletter, give us a call +86 10-65616609 or contact us directly via