Softening market conditions in China have impacted employee sentiment, with more employees losing confidence in the labour market.
According to the Michael Page International 2012/2012 Employee Intentions China report, 49% of surveyed employees predicted that the white collar employment market will improve or significantly improve over 2012/2013, down from 92% in 2011.
In addition, nearly half the surveyed employees (49%) believe the current professional job market is strong, a decline from 68% of participants last year. Some 18% of respondents said the market is very strong, down from 24% in the previous survey.
Despite the loss in market confidence, 73% of surveyed employees indicated that they are very likely or quite likely to look for a new job in the next six to 12 months.
Salary remains an important incentive when either changing roles or remaining with a current employer. More than half the survey respondents (55%) indicated they would expect a salary increase of 16% or above when changing jobs. For those remaining with their existing employer, 63% plan to request a salary increase over the next six to 12 months, a significant increase on the 34% indicating they would request a pay rise in last year’s survey.
“Within this climate, employers need to look at the most appealing incentives to attract and retain talented professionals. Based on employees’ responses to our survey, we know that a competitive salary in addition to opportunities for career development remain the key motivators for skilled employees when choosing to stay in their job or search for a new one,” said Andy Bentote, Managing Director, Michael Page International in North & Eastern China.