Layoffs and a shrinking job market have forced fresh graduates to lower their expectations of finding good jobs, some visitors to a national job fair said on Tuesday.
The job fair, organized by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, began in Tianjin on Sunday and will travel to several major cities for two weeks. The fair offers information on more than 520,000 vacancies for graduates.
Luo Fengming has already realized the difficulty of finding proper employment, although he will major in computer science and technology from the Beijing Institute of Technology next year. So he began looking for a job in September, 10 months before his graduation.
"The deteriorating economic situation has forced me to lower my expected monthly salary from 4,000 yuan (US$588) to 2,000 yuan," he said.
Luo has submitted his resume to more than 50 companies and taken a dozen written exams in the past two months. Despite that he has not met with success.
The global financial crisis has made it difficult for graduates to find good jobs, Xinhua quoted vice Minister of Human Resources and Social Security Zhang Xiaojian as having said. But "it's important for social stability that graduates' are helped to get jobs," Zhang said.
Though some job seekers are more confident of success than Luo, they have lowered their expectations, too.
As Dong Fangzhao, a postgraduate in English from Beijing Jiaotong University, said: "I know I'll find a job in the end because my master's degree is relatively advantageous. But I wouldn't demand a high salary because of the economic situation."
About 6.1 million students will graduate from universities and colleges next year and will join some 800,000 of this year's graduates to look for jobs, said Meng Xianghong, an official of the ministry's National Center for Human Resources.
Besides organizing job fairs, the ministry will encourage graduates to start their own businesses, and guide those who decide to do so, he said.
"To build confidence among university graduates, we will provide them counseling on job-hunting and set up a database of unemployed graduates," Meng said.
The center's figures show employers at the national job fair are targeting majors in 10 subjects such as business management, electronics and information, economics, mechanics and foreign language.
There is some good news, too. When famous companies such as Citigroup and Motorola are slashing jobs, many domestic enterprises are shrugging off the economic downturn, with some even hiring more staff.
Red Yellow Blue Education Institution (RYBEI), a Beijing-based early education organization, said it needed about 1,000 graduates in 2009, twice as much as this year, because it plans to open 70 kindergartens around the country.
"The global economic downturn has had no obvious impact on us till now. But I think it could affect us in the future," said Zhong Manwei, in charge of RYBEI's human resources department.
Zhao Zhen, HR official of Beijing DHC Digital Technology Corporation, too, said the company would recruit more graduates than last year at the national job fair when it travels to Beijing next week.
(China Daily November 19, 2008)