National Outlook China-2023

The most positive news for global markets in 2023 is that China has reopened for business after three years of strict COVID lockdown. The economy of China will rebound strongly, and most expect 5 % to 5.5% GDP growth in 2023. 

What is the Chinese talent market outlook for 2023? 

Given robust economic expectations over the next two years at least, organizations are looking to recover and grow. To accomplish this, they need executive talent with new skills to lead the way. The heightened war for talent will also expand to an increase in demand for interim managers and coaching services. COVID has spurred employers to become more flexible over the last three years, offering employees such options as remote working.  Another COVID-related shift in 2023 will see a new government policy to discourage sick leaves due to the pandemic. Overall, the demand for search services will be cautious as employers prepare for a potential global recession and weigh the consequences of the continuing war in Ukraine. However, demand for specialists in many sectors will increase, including transformation managers mandated to help reposition businesses. These strategic leaders will replace old-school executives.     

Which industries and functions are most in demand? 

The industries and functions most in demand are in healthcare (board, C-suite, medical staff), technology (CIO, digital head officer, technical project leaders), finance, and industry (digitalization, quality management, and sales). Manufacturing companies are looking for supply chain and quality managers, as well as plant managers and CEOs. 

How are salaries changing in China? 

Salaries rose significantly across all sectors before 2019. This trend has reversed or stagnated for the last three years due to COVID. As China is not facing high inflation as in most other countries, we project candidates’ salary offers will be flat or show very little increase in 2023. It will be harder to attract passive (already-employed) candidates as both these potential candidates and clients are becoming more selective in their requirements.  This hiring environment makes the role of executive search consultants critical in filling key vacancies for clients. 

What are some other HR trends we are seeing? 

More companies will employ RPO (recruitment process outsourcing) for middle management positions. Executive roles or project-based interim management roles will be in higher demand. Demand for coaching services for employees below the top management level will increase. Providing career management and performance improvement coaching will become a vital aspect of HR department services, as companies must consider how they can remain attractive to their employees. 

Hong Kong SAR in 2023. 

The driving force of Hong Kong’s economic growth will continue to be in financial services, trading and logistics, tourism/culture, and professional services. Integrating the Hong Kong economy with the Bay Area of South China will make AI and other advances in technology the next drivers of growth and employment.  

Taipei City in 2023 

The elections in January 2024 and their uncertain outcomes will cause the economy to remain under pressure for 2023.  The primary industries in Taiwan are electronics, communications, information technology, and life science products. Taipei can become a “regional hub” when all the dust is settled. The city will be very cost competitive compared to Singapore, Shanghai, Tokyo, and Hong Kong. 

CONTACT: Simon Wan for more information at email: