Make A Concerted Effort to Improve Employment Opportunities for People

Employment is crucial to the people’s livelihood and the development of our society.


At the beginning of 2020, the outbreak of COVID-19 cast a nightmare over many enterprises, making their orders go into fluctuations like a "roller coaster" . The job market was significantly affected and the employment stability and employment rate encountered unprecedented challenges. Shaoguan city exerted unprecedented efforts to stabilize the employment market with various measures. What the municipal government has done to stabilize the employment market? How the structural problem of employment has been solved? The reporter visited some enterprises, job seekers and human resources departments of the city.


On August 30, 2020, Shaoguan city held a job fair to alleviate difficulties of employment of key enterprises. Photo by Fan Linzhen


Problems faced by job-seekers and enterprises in the epidemic


"As a result of the epidemic, it is not easy to find a decent job, especially for young people like me who is with no work experience and lower education level, so I seize every opportunity to accumulate more work experience ." At the counter of a bathing suit store in the Jinglvlun Culture and Tourist Town, cashier He Lifang was busy with her work and told the reporter. For the future she has long had a plan ," I took the college exam last year, in a few days I will get the results. If I would get passed, I will go to the college for further study. Only by improv myself, I would have more job opportunities in the future."


During the visit, the reporter learned that there are many young people like He Lifang in Shaoguan who choose to cope with the severe employment situation brought about by the epidemic through keeping on further study and improvement of their own, and some people with employment difficulties have changed their career plans, choosing to master a new skill to seek a more stable life.

On August 30, 2020, Shaoguan city held a job fair to alleviate difficulties of employment of key enterprises. Photo by Fan Linzhen


After the resumption of work in the middle of 2020, catering and service industry were faced with "labor shortage ". According to Li Huijun, president of Jinglvlun Culture and Tourist Holding Group, who pointed out that grass-roots employees are more mobile and are in a state of shortage from time to time in service industry. Although the company has been recruiting employees through college job fairs and online platforms, but employees on the job are quite unstable.


With the slowdown of the epidemic, many manufacturing enterprises in Shaoguan saw an obvious increase of orders, leading to a pick-up in recruitment markets. According to the data from the human resources market of the city, the demand for labor has risen sharply since the third quarter of last year, with the number of people in the third quarter rising 47.02% from the previous quarter, up 25.03% compared to the same period of last year. Flexible employment has become a new trend, which is growing rapidly. It is worth paying attention to that the continuous shortage of skilled talents has become the key factor that puzzles most of the enterprises.


More measures to ensure stable employment

According to the dynamic monitoring data of employment in enterprises, the total number of new employees in Shaoguan in 2020 is 29000, and the registered unemployment rate is 3.5%. Since last year, in the face of severe and complex domestic and international situations and tough employment environment, Shaoguan city has rolled out a series of policies and measures to reduce the burden of enterprises, stabilize and expand the employment market, making every effort to meet the employment need of thousands of enterprises with 35300 pieces of job information being posted online. The policies and measures greatly helped to promote the stability of employment and ensure the livelihood of citizens. It can be said that the word "stability" is not easy to come by.

Workers are assembling toys on the production line of EARLY LIGHT INT'L (HOLDINGS) LTD Shaoguan Branch    Photo by Hou Haixia


In the face of the impact of the pandemic, the Bureau of Human Resources and Social Security has taken employment stability and employment security as a major political task. It has rolled out a series of policies and measures, such as the "Ten Measures for Promoting Employment" , 22 Measures on Assisting Enterprises to Cope with the Epidemic, and the Management of the Use of Employment Subsidy Funds, to form a more active employment support system involving finance, taxation and government funds, helping employees and enterprises to better cope with the impacts brought by the pandemic.


Shaoguan city focused on two aspects to create more job opportunities, one is to support enterprises to stabilize their workforce, and the second one is to support new start-ups so as to generate new jobs. To help enterprises reduce turnover rate and to avoid their potential downsizing, 1.58 billion yuan of fees of pension, unemployment insurance, industrial injury insurance have been waived by the city administration, benefiting 22000 enterprises. The municipal government also dispensed over 84 million yuan of unemployment insurance subsidy to workers in 2600 enterprises, benefiting 239400 people. Meanwhile, it issued 59.24 million yuan of secured loan to start-ups, benefiting 230 entrepreneurs.


The municipality puts the employment of college graduates in the first place, implements a program for promoting employment and entrepreneurship of college graduates who have not been employed since leaving school. People affected by the epidemic have been invited into an project, through which 22300 unemployed found new jobs, 2219 people who have employment difficulties got employed. Last year, 400 people obtained employment in public welfare sectors developed by the municipality.


Shaoguan city rolled out a series of measures to secure employment, including the setting up of an employment special fund, the safeguard plan for work resumption, the vocational skill training action, the poverty alleviation plan through employment. Under the support of the employment special fund, the city carried out a project to help enterprises through favorable policies, government aid fund and personnel training. In 2020, 68.7091 million yuan of employment and start-up subsidy fund has been dispensed, reaching a record high. In the aspect of helping enterprises to resume production with sufficient workforce, special measures have been taken, like on spot service for solving employment problems, tailored transport service for workers to return to work etc., sending 23437 people to return to work in 60 key enterprises. In response to the problem of professional and technical personnel shortage, the city’s human resources and social security department organized 3455 students from 3 technical colleges to work as interns in enterprises, organized 153 rounds of online and offline recruitment activities, posted 130500 ads on online job boards. Meanwhile, the city government made full use of the new industries’ ability of generating new jobs, organizing three job fairs and employment promotion activities of "Cantonese Cuisine Master "," Guangdong Mechanic " and "Southern Guangdong Household Management Service".


To solve the employment dilemma, enterprises need to do their work well


In the face of the shortage of general workers and high-skilled workers, and the rise of new industries, how should enterprises and individuals fill the gap between demand and supply in the  employment market?


Many business leaders told the reporter that enterprises are quite concerned about workforce training. Because it takes a long time and costs a big amount of money for training to have general workers grow into technical workers. What is even worse is that technical workers are more likely to change jobs when they get experienced. In the face of this situation, the government should take the initiative to invest more money in organizing training programs for general workers. In addition, for enterprises, they need to do their work well regarding offering higher pay, creating better working environment and providing better care to employees, only by these means can fundamentally solve the employment problem. For job seekers, to obtain a ideal job, they should also make every effort to improve their skills and study more to become qualified workers.


August 17,2020, "Southern Guangdong Household Management Service" vocational skills competition was held in Shaoguan. The picture shows the trainer is showing how to do rehabilitation training the elderly.  Photo by Fan Linzhen


Cao Mingfei, deputy director of the Municipal Employment Service Administration, said that different employment groups are facing different employment problems, so more targeted measures should be taken to deal with the problems. Favorable factors such as convenient transportation, good working environment and nice salary are prerequisites for successful recruitment and retention. "Shaoguan has a lot of good enterprises, but when we go to school to carry out vocational guidance, we find that some students and parents know little about the enterprises in Shaoguan. While some are quite aimless about their career path. To solve the problems, the schools need to take the initiative to connect with local enterprises to provide more options for graduates, while enterprises and job seekers should do their work well to become more competitive.