±A - Subscribe to Our Newsletter
Our monthly newsletter contains health and financial news, expat articles, social media recommendations and more.
±A - Join Our Community
±A - Read Our Guide
±A - Compare Quotes and Save
±A - Listen to the Podcast
±A - Expert Financial
±A - ExpatFocus Partners
Finding EmploymentBack to top Back to main Skip to menu
Hong Kong - Finding Employment
The rate of unemployment in Hong Kong according to figures in January 2016 is 3.4%. This is a slight increase from previous years, but always remains comfortably low. Information regarding unemployment in terms of regions is not available.
The job application procedure depends on whether:
1) You are applying while in Hong Kong. This situation is very rare. For example, you cannot easily work in bars or cafes without a Hong Kong Identity card, and the added drawback of job seeking whilst there is that employers need to give reasons why they should employ you over a local person for the job. On top of this, they need to sponsor a work Visa for you, which involves legal work and expenses for them. Hospitality and education are sectors which could offer some options. It is worth looking on the job sites listed below as well as on expat job sites.
Applications are usually made online, via a form or with a CV. If successful, interviews and trial days are then scheduled.
2) You are transferring to Hong Kong with your current job. If there is an opportunity to work with your current company in Hong Kong you can go via this route and be transferred, as sponsored by your company who will organise a work Visa for you.
3) You are applying from your own country to work in Hong Kong. See above and below for useful websites, as all job seeking is done online when not in the country. It will be the same procedure: an online application, most likely one or two Skype interviews and then if you are hired you will be on a probationary period for 4-6 months once you start work there.
Large multinational companies and international corporations maintain a strong interest in employing English speaking expats. The HR and legal sectors as well as digital Advertising, investment banks and IT all offer a steady flow of work.
Because most job listings are now online, they are listed in English through your search engine and if you need to go to a specific page it will simply be a case of clicking on the ‘translate to English’ button. If a company is seeking an English speaking employee, their job adverts will be in English. Not speaking the local language means you may miss out on local advertisements, newspapers and word of mouth opportunities, but if you stick to the internet you will find something appropriate to your needs.
Job search website for all employment sectors in Hong Kong, including a ‘companies hiring this week’ feature:
Job search website for all employment sectors in Hong Kong, mostly for job seekers with some work experience.
Job search website for all employment sectors in Hong Kong, ranging from entry level to experienced.
Expat job websites
Job search website for jobs in Hong Kong, some of which can be expats can apply for.
Site for jobs in Hong Kong specialising in education.
The Government of Hong Kong Job Seekers site
Government-run job site providing a list of local jobs and advice.
It is necessary to create a free account to access this information.
Temporary work is in short supply in Hong Kong due to Visa sponsorship requirements and the fact that the employer must offer a reason as to why a non local should be employed instead of a local. For temporary work, this is a lot of hassle and expense for the employer. If someone is willing to employ you without a Visa, you should never take up the job as it is illegal. It may be worth going through recruitment agencies to ensure that your work will be of a temporary nature and that the paperwork will all be legal.
The penalties for illegal work can be severe. You would be deported to your home country, your employer would be forced to pay a fine and it may even result in the employer having a prison sentence. You may not be able to return to Hong Kong again. You must have a work Visa to start work in Hong Kong.
Other useful contact details
British Chamber of Commerce
Tel: 00 + (852) 28242211
Business Networking Groups:
Business Network International BNI
One of the biggest business networks with groups all across Hong Kong.
Entrepreneur Hong Kong
Networking group for Hong Kong entrepreneurs.
Meet Up Hong Kong
Professional networking events hosted by Meet Up all over Hong Kong
Expat Health Insurance Partners
At Bupa we have been helping individuals and families live longer, healthier, happier lives for over 60 years. We are trusted by expats in 190 different countries and have links with healthcare organisations throughout the world. So whether you're moving abroad for a change of career or a change of scene, with our international private health insurance you will always be in safe hands.
Cigna has worked in international health insurance for more than 30 years. Today, Cigna has over 71 million customer relationships around the world. Looking after them is an international workforce of 31,000 people, plus a network of over 1 million hospitals, physicians, clinics and health and wellness specialists worldwide, meaning you have easy access to treatment.