Is it easy to find a job in Shanghai?

Because of its status as China's financial capital and the country's biggest port, Shanghai is a great place for financial professionals to relocate. For foreigners, it is one of China's most ethnically and culturally varied cities.

More and more people from across the globe visit Shanghai each year, and many of them aren't simply tourists. They come to work in the city that is often credited with helping China become the world's fastest-growing economy. Indeed, Shanghai has become a popular destination for expatriates because of its central location in the global economy.

Preliminary Observations

It seems that Shanghai's employment market is as active as ever. However, fluency in Mandarin is a must for any foreigner looking to stand out from the crowd when applying for jobs in China. In global firms, where English is the primary language and salary is the highest, foreigners may always find job. The agricultural, architectural, and service sectors, to name a few, all provide a wide range of openings for qualified applicants.

You may either work for a school or university as an English teacher in Shanghai, or you can go it alone as a freelancer. An foreigner with a stable work in the first case has a variety of options in the second, including taking on other occupations to supplement his income. The employment rate is 83.2%, and 71 percent of the overall population is made up of foreigners. This is a hint of good things to come in Shanghai, where the low jobless rate is a promising indication for foreigners.

Ethics in the Workplace

Expats moving to Shanghai must keep in mind the importance of showing an interest in learning the local language. Even if they can't speak fluent Mandarin or any other local dialect, it's always appreciated when visitors make an effort. Expats are also required to include their Chinese names and job titles on the reverse of their business cards as a courtesy to their Shanghainese coworkers when printing business cards. Angry outbursts should be kept to a minimum in public. However, expressing one's thoughts in a respectful manner is a common habit. Executives in suits and handing out business cards with both hands are the norm during corporate meetings. Respect for seniority is a big issue in Shanghai. At work, women in Shanghai are expected to maintain a more conventional demeanor.


Companies in Shanghai pay between RMB 1000 and RMB 2000 per month, with an annual salary of RMB 38,447 (US$ 4,632) for executives. Most expats, on the other hand, choose to work for Fortune 500 businesses like IBM, Intel, and HP, which typically pay between RMB 100,000 and RMB 200,000 a year to their employees. Teaching jobs are also well-paying, although wages may vary depending on experience and credentials. The average monthly pay in China is RMB 29,006. However, an entry-level salary would be between RMB 6000 and 8000, including housing. More than RMB 10,000 in monthly income is possible for someone with a Master's degree and TEFL or TESOL certification.

Hours of Operation

Even though a normal work week in Shanghai lasts from 9 am to 6 pm on Monday through Friday, many workers work longer hours. Overtime compensation is unusual for government employees, although it is common in multinational corporations. Workers in the United States are entitled to three national holidays, namely: Independence Day, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving.

Chinese New Year's Eve International Labor Day

Even though all three holidays are combined into a seven-day vacation, workers must work the preceding weekend in order to get the full seven days off.

In Shanghai, there is a plethora of pleasant surprises not only for visitors but for those who have migrated and always thought that this city is worthy of being called their home city.

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