Re-working or writing your resume for China will be similar to any other resume you write, so you shouldn’t have to change a lot. However, there are some differences, which are worth adhering to, especially as it shows that you are aware of certain Chinese cultural specifications.
Like any other CV, it should be no longer than 2 pages. You want it to be clear, concise and direct, without losing any pertinent details. Unless you have had long gaps in your employment, which can’t easily be explained, or have worked within many different fields it is best to write the CV in anti-chronological order. Personal Information at the top of the first page, followed by employment history, followed by education (unless your educational background is more impressive or pertinent to the position, in which case it should be presented ahead of work experience), other interests and references.
If you can it would be good to hand potential employers two copies of your CV, one in English and one translated into Chinese. However, this is not essential.
Make yourself stand out with a great resume
On a resume for China, employers expect to see much more personal information, which in the West would be deemed discriminatory. So what information should you provide them?
Like all CVs you should provide them with your full name, address complete with postcode, a contact telephone number and an email address.
Resumes for China should also include your date of birth, your gender (Chinese employers may not be to automatically figure it out), your marital status as well as the number and age of your children. And finally, you should include a headshot.
When first coming to China this last request will often confuse westerners but Chinese employer see it as important. The photo can be passport sized, and remember to look smart and dress conservatively.
For each job you should state your job title, the company you worked for, the period of time you worked there and the time of contract you had, whether it be full time, part time or an internship. For each position you need to succinctly explain the duties, responsibilities and any promotions gained or skills acquired.
Even though you are trying to promote yourself it is important to refrain from bragging. You want to remain modest, resist flourishing language and stay honest. The potential employer may check up on anything that sounds exaggerated.
This section is particular important for China for a number of reasons. The first of which is that in order to get a working Z visa for China now you must fulfill certain educational requirements. Employers will not be able to legally hire you if you don’t.
Furthermore, for most Chinese employers higher degree equates to greater capabilities. So list all degrees that you have achieved and be ready to prove them with copies of your diplomas. It is best to present your educational background in anti-chronological order with the most recently achieved first.
Include all relevant diplomas, certificates, degrees, trainings and awards. For each, clearly present the dates of attendance, the year you obtained the qualification, the level of study, e.g.: BA or MA, the name of the diploma, degree etc, the program or nature of studies, and the institution where you obtained the qualification.
For work in China you should include a section for the languages you speak. Speaking English will almost certainly be a necessity for working in a Chinese company, if it is not your native language you should indicate what level of English you speak, read and write and provide information for any recognized test that you’ve taken to prove your efficiency in the language.
For many jobs speaking Chinese is not essential but it can be a great advantage. Again you should include your level of Chinese in terms of speaking, reading and writing.
Other information to include
Be prepared to include references, expected salary and availability as many job offers will ask for them. If it is not specifically asked for in the application it will likely come up during the interview so have an answer ready at the very least.
For references you can simply write “References available upon request” at the bottom of your resume. For expected salary do some research beforehand as to the range of possible salaries for the position you are applying for. It is always better to ask for too much than too little. You may also be asked for previous salaries, so it may be worth converting your previous salaries to RMB to ensure everyone is on the same page.
You could include personal interests and curricular activities but this is not necessary. If you do, try to use this section as a way to further explain your teamwork, and organizational abilities. Perhaps you captained a local sports team or have done volunteer work. It is probably not worth including this section if your personal interests include reading, cooking or hanging out in cafes, unless it is a way of proving your strong interest in Chinese culture (e.g. Chinese cooking, travelling around China). Just remember to keep it relevant and don’t go off on tangents.
Right, you are now ready to begin re-editing your resume for China!
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Keywords: working in China; CVs for China; Chinese resume Resume for China
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