China has a huge population, its economy is rapidly growing, and it is opening up to businesses from overseas, including from western countries. And China may soon overtake the U.S. as the world's largest economy.
Adventurous HR People
HR people who are adventurous enough will find going to China attractive and intriguing. HR specialists can help expatriate professionals coming into the country. Most of these professionals are willing to come over only if the education of their children is assured and accommodation that is reasonable both in terms of comfort and cost are available.
HR can help these professionals settle into the kind of working environment found in this vast continent of Asia.
China has a big job market especially for western-educated professionals. One particular concern is China's urgent need for English language teachers. Managers with English language proficiency will do well there. At least until they have enough professionals of their own. This may not happen any time soon.
HR professionals with a global outlook and have undergone training in diversity management have great potentials for career advancement if they go to countries such as China and India.
Potentials of Countries such as China, Brazil and South Africa
Two other emerging countries other than China that offer similar career prospects are Brazil and South Africa. Professionals having HR expertise will have much to do and to offer in these countries.
Diverse Cultures and Languages
Expatriate workers face many other challenges beside having the right educational background and credentials. This includes HR professionals.
Differences in culture, belief, language, ideology, and so on, will put to the test expatriates' mental and physical toughness. Other than this, they need to demonstrate, on a daily basis, their utmost understanding of people who are different from them in so many ways.
They need to show, each time and every time, their impartiality and fair-mindedness. They need to remember to keep focusing on people's ability and not on the color of their skin or belief.
HR people are well-placed to effectively play this role. They are supposedly people-oriented. They are expected to treat people fairly and justly according to sound principles of people management at the workplace. Properly-trained HR professionals can take initiatives to bridge the differences between workers, between managers and subordinates. This helps organizations to concentrate on their core business.
They can help further to demonstrate that China is HR paradise where the growing number of HR professionals can gain experience working with people of different cultural background and skills set.
Emerging economies such as China, India, Brazil and South Africa need expertise from overseas.
In 2006 McKinsey conducted a survey and found that only an estimated 4 million new Chinese university graduates in that year had the skills required by foreign firms in China.
This is both a challenge to multinationals as well as an opportunity for foreign graduates. HR experts can expect to do well in China.
This can only mean that for now, it looks like China is HR paradise. This is the place where HR people can demonstrate the great importance of HR.
China which can boast of having the largest population in the world, appears as the best option for overseas executives at the moment. Talented HR people including new graduates in human resource management will do well in Chine for the foreseeable future.
India is expected to overtake China in terms of population in the next few years.
Whether or not India will eventually emerge as the more popular destination for professionals from overseas, it remains unanswered for the moment. After all, many Indian professionals, particularly those with IT qualification, are heading for the United States.
Whatever happens in the future, it is clear that China is HR paradise for now.
Asia Research Online stated:
"Developing effective HR strategies for China is increasingly a major consideration of companies commissioning market research both from outside and within China."
Matt Durnin's article entitled 'China is still a jobs hotspot for expats' (12 Febraury 2014) indicates that the number of expatriates going to China for jobs is increasing.
This will remain true for the foreseeable future. But many Chinese corporate entities are unable to hire expatriates. Their salaries are high other than language and cultural barriers. As time passes, Chinese workers will take over the jobs that require foreign expertise. When that time comes, China will cease as an HR paradise.