You are here

Salary Trends in China

Breaking down the data by region, 35%of mainland respondents labeled a desire for a higher salary by their employees as the key reason for staff turnover. Mainlanders typically have the greatest expectations of salary increases in the region. Rises of 6% to 10% were expected by 61% of the employer respondents. In fact, larger increases are likely dependent on the region and industry. View China market overview.

“In Northern China, professionals changing jobs can expect pay increases in the 10 percent to 35 percent range,” says Rupert Forster, Managing Director for Michael Page in North China. “Mid-level changes tend to award higher salary increases, while senior-level professionals typically receive lower increases. Compared with most international markets, Northern China is still buoyant. Employers are willing to pay top dollar for the best people, with average candidates receiving more moderate pay rises.”

Industrial manufacturing is still a huge part of the local economy, and this makes jobseekers with manufacturing experience more plentiful – and therefore less able to command high salaries. A quality manager in a factory, for example, will face competition from many professionals with similar qualifications.

“In eastern China, junior hires usually expect raises of between 30% and 50% when coming off a low base salary – usually less than RMB10,000 a month,” says Sunny Song. “At the mid level, 20% to 40% is standard, with similar raises for senior executives.”

However, Song notes that some senior-level candidates are actually willing to make lateral moves or even take a pay cut in some places, such as Suzhou. “This is because these professionals are coming to this part of the country in search of an easier life – cheaper and less stressful than that in the first-tier cities,” she says.

For full details see the 2015 Greater China Salary & Employment outlook report.