What is the Chinese term for students

China: starting salary for students is just enough to live on

Nowadays, a good education does not necessarily guarantee a higher salary. Conversely, the term migrant worker does not necessarily mean people with a low income. Experts find it normal that college graduates' incomes do not match that of migrant workers.


"Every morning when you open your eyes, you face millions of yuan in pressure." At the Hangzhou City Party Committee's business forum recently convened by the city government, some executives spoke out openly on the subject of staff costs, which was recognized by general approval.


On the one hand, companies find that the pay of competent workers is far from optimal due to the prevailing cost pressure, on the other hand, the next wave of university graduates is ready to make their way through only to find out that their starting salary does not even come close to the wages of migrant workers.


Why are there such stark contrasts in the supply and demand for jobs?


Students: The wages after the cost of living are deplorable


Nowadays, a good education in China does not necessarily guarantee a higher salary, conversely the term migrant worker does not necessarily have to stand for people with a low income.


Reporters found through the information portal ganji.com that professions such as podiatrists, craftsmen and workers who do not require a school-leaving certificate are receiving salary offers of over 8,000 yuan a month.


For professions such as teachers or cashiers, for which a qualification is required, monthly salaries of just 2,000-3,000 yuan are advertised.


Su Shi is the pseudonym of a recent graduate from the Human Resources Management Institute at Zhejiang University, which is located in the provincial capital of Hangzhou. In an interview with a journalist, she mentioned that there were no difficulties in finding work in Hangzhou. She had sent her résumé to four state-run banks, and at the end of the day she got a confirmation from the Bank of China. The training period lasts one year and is remunerated at 2500 yuan per month. Because she is from Hangzhou, she does not have to pay for accommodation, transportation and living expenses. Even with a low salary, she's pretty happy.


Non-native students, however, need to address more practical challenges.


Xiao Deng from northeast China is in a similar situation. She also graduated from Zhejiang University and now works as an accountant in Qianjiang Xincheng Auditing Company for a monthly salary of 4,000-5,000 yuan. Living far away from work is definitely uncomfortable. However, housing prices near their place of work are appalling. A month's rent would cost her 2,000 yuan.


So far everything is manageable, but there are worse situations: Xiao Jin, a student of cultural industry management at Zhejiang University of Industry and Commerce, struggled for ages to get a job in Xiaoshan. She is still in her probationary period, but her everyday life is still considered quite orderly. She just mustn't hope for too much.


Zhou Zhou, aka one of her fellow students, has taken refuge in a department store. When she talks about it, it doesn't sound bad at all and all the classmates around her go pale with envy. Only her actual salary is pretty measly, 1,310 yuan a month. If one subtracts the apartment rent of 900 yuan, then there is no longer enough money for the remaining basic needs. She has no choice but to beg for money at home to make a living.


Xiao Jin has recently been watching a television series called "Fuchen" ("Up and Down"). Whenever she sees employees of a foreign company, like the protagonist Qiao Li, in pretty clothes, each with an Apple laptop in their arms, she becomes particularly jealous. The salary of an ordinary worker in Xiaoshan at the same time is 100 yuan a day. With the little money Xiao Jin gets, she can't afford an Apple computer or an iPhone. Newbies with no work experience like them have to start from scratch. You have to get used to stressful working conditions, put up with criticism from superiors and live frugally.


Experts: Starting salaries for college students that don't match the income of migrant workers are quite common


Is it normal for students to earn less than migrant workers or is it unusual? A reporter asked the director of the Zhejiang University Public Administration and Risk Management Institute Professor Guo Jiqiang to analyze the reasons for this.


Guo says that the determination of the salary is a particularly complicated process, which is directly determined by factors such as supply and demand in the labor market, existing market structures, work environment, occupational safety, reputation, payment method and the possibility for the further development of the employee.


China has still not abandoned its export-oriented, labor-intensive development approaches. This in turn means that the demand for migrant workers is increasing. The demand for college graduates, on the other hand, is not yet as high as college enrollments, making migrant workers hard to find, while students struggle to find work.


With the current supply and demand situation, the market will adapt and regulate itself independently.


Another factor is that migrant workers do what is commonly described as bitter, dirty, exhausting or even dangerous. This must also be taken into account when determining the salary.


A study by the Zhejiang University Public Administration Institute found that migrant workers are paid by work done, not by time, making them work longer and intensely. It is also particularly important that migrant workers often take on mechanical, repetitive tasks. Since they only have narrow chances of professional advancement, there is hardly anything wrong with their current salary.


Guo Jiqiang adds that even in the very market-oriented United States, workers (such as garbage collectors) get higher salaries than specialized professors.


He thinks that if you compare the income of students who have just graduated with that of migrant workers, you would realize that the income of the latter is not too high, but rather that of the students is too low.


If you want to change the current situation, according to Guo, you definitely have to pay attention to practical aspects of your work, from the mentality when looking for a job to career planning, social practice and the general level of quality.


Viewed from a lower level, the methods currently in place for Chinese economic growth, as well as the requirements for university students, must also change.


A reform of the frozen education system and improvement of adaptivity and the speed of adjustment to the market situation are also necessary. In addition, society can also contribute to improving the information and labor market situation and reduce the costs of searching for workers.