The Hunt for the Red Dragon
20th November 2018
As 2018 draws to a close, it’s that time of year when we reflect on the year gone by and look ahead to the year to come.
This past year will have been my first full year in Hong Kong since making the move from Dubai in May 2017 and I’m pleased to say it has been a great success from both a personal and professional basis; Hong Kong is at times a perplexing place, but fulfilling overall and this pretty much sums up my working experience too!
There are many challenges facing a recruitment agency in today’s climate, but MCG&Co has grown steadily and I like to feel we are making a name for ourselves by staying true to our marcomms specialisation, being a true partner to our clients and offering a level of service that sets us apart from our competition.
One of the most interesting results we have seen in 2018 has been the in-roads made into China, especially since we are yet to have a formal entity established there.
Around 20% of placements emanating out of the Hong Kong office were in Mainland China covering senior PR, creative and strategy roles, as well as mid-level marketing positions, and this will lay the foundation for our company expansion in 2019.
China represents an exciting, but testing market with professional pitfalls such as the ability to extract currency from the country easily and the apparent volatility of candidates, but there are ways around this if you work flexibly with your clients and make sure to manage candidates as closely as you possibly can.
In actual fact, the best business professionals tend to be the ones that are able to work effectively with you remotely and we haven’t really suffered too many issues with candidate unpredictability thus far. WeChat makes life very easy in this respect!
The sheer scale of business in China is mind-boggling and we have clients with 15 employees in Hong Kong and 400 in Shanghai for example. China is a fast-paced, forward-thinking, tech-savvy place and makes sense for the next step in our international expansion.
Our home there will be Shanghai, which is increasingly becoming the most cosmopolitan and accessible city in the region, especially for expats who are being squeezed out of traditional hubs such as Hong Kong and Singapore in favour of the local work-force.
How do you find working in Mainland China as an expat / a company based on the ground or are you working into China remotely? Would love to hear your thoughts on how to do business there.