The average salaries in Asia have increased or remained largely resilient compared with the previous year, studies by Robert Half have found.
According to the recruitment firm's 2010/2011 Asia-Pacific Finance and Accounting Salary (FA) Guide, and the Banking and Financial Services Salary (FS) Guide, a significant number of finance professionals in Hong Kong have experienced a salary increase in the past 12 months (FA: 20 per cent; FS: 54 per cent).
Despite a majority (FA: 56 per cent; FS: 72 per cent) of Hong Kong professionals receiving a bonus last year, a significant proportion (FA: 35 per cent; FS: 50 per cent) do not believe that their salary package is fair, or in line with the market. A majority of Hong Kong employees think it is necessary to switch jobs for better pay (FA: 65 per cent; FS: 82 per cent).
The FA guide was conducted in Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand and Singapore, and the FS guide in Australia, Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore.
Andrew Morris, director of Robert Half Hong Kong, says: "Employers and employees need to be aligned in their understanding of what will constitute a pay rise, as this will allow employers to manage expectations and maintain a positive relationship with key talent."
Companies increase headcount
Nearly half the companies in Hong Kong and southern China are increasing staff numbers this month, according to the latest employment index by recruitment firm Michael Page.
Of the firms recruiting new staff, 54 per cent are hiring for frontline positions in areas such as sales and account management. Some 23 per cent are looking to fill operational functions, such as purchasing and supply chain, while 18 per cent are bolstering their back-office capabilities.
Close to two-thirds of respondents are concerned with a professional skills shortage that will re-emerge as an issue during the second half of this year.
The report was compiled from data gathered from an online survey sent to more than 100 executive-level human resources professionals and hiring managers.
World Cup sick notes for sale
With many World Cup fans on the mainland pulling boozy all-nighters to watch the games, fake sick notes are just what the doctors are ordering.
Online bulletin boards and websites are rife with advertisements for doctors' notes, excusing employees from work. The notes cost between 100 yuan (HK$114) and 300 yuan.
A woman claiming to be a doctor says she sells sick notes, medical certificates, and proof of hospitalisation and discharge, from most hospitals and clinics in Beijing.
"Many people have contacted me to get doctors' notes - mostly so that they can watch the World Cup - over the past few weeks," she says.
She claims the notes she sells are real, but are illegally obtained through networks she has built among hospitals.