Government assists grads seeking work
The central government is making efforts to relieve employment pressure on college graduates as large-scale job fairs are suspended or canceled to contain the novel coronavirus pneumonia.
Wang Hui, director of the college students department of the Ministry of Education, said at a news conference recently that the number of graduates will reach 8.74 million this year, 400,000 higher than in 2019.
At a time when these graduates were supposed to be busy looking for jobs, they are facing a hard situation due to the epidemic nationwide. Large gatherings have been banned, including job fairs.
The effect of an already slowing economy on businesses has been overlapped by new economic losses brought by the epidemic, leading many companies to raise the bar for college graduates and reduce recruitment quotas to control labor costs.
Zhaopin, an online recruitment agency in Beijing, released a report in early February saying that positions offered on its platform decreased 71.6 percent year-on-year in the first week after the Spring Festival holiday.
About 30.4 percent of surveyed companies said that they will consider cutting down their recruitment quotas because of the epidemic. Another 30 percent said they can't pay salaries on time.
According to the report, half of the surveyed companies will limit their recruitment quota to 10 people while only about 25 percent of them will recruit 30 or more people.
To reduce the impact of the epidemic as much as possible, the Ministry of Education is stepping up online employment services for college students and helping develop more job opportunities to relieve their pressure, Wang said.
"The ministry will maintain close connections with provincial-level recruitment platforms and those run by companies to share employment information with them, and make the information more accessible to students," he said."Universities are encouraged to offer services like interviews or contract signing online."
The ministry is also endeavoring to develop more job opportunities, and is encouraging graduates to serve on the grassroots level, join the army or start their own businesses.
Graduates in poor financial condition will have designated college staff members help them to get employment information.
Seeking jobs or doing interviews online is strongly recommended by the government amid the epidemic. On Feb 5, five central government departments including the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Transport jointly released a notice encouraging universities and companies to organize recruitment tests and interviews online.
Recruitment campaigns will be lengthened and employment services－for example, signing employment contracts－will be open to college students online, the notice said.
Zhaopin suggested that it is better for graduates to take action as early as possible, like sending their resumes online.
College students should also adjust their targets while remaining confident in themselves because job markets may be affected by the epidemic for some time but will soon resume, it said.
Li Zeming from Qufu Normal University in Shandong province will be admitted to the university as a teacher after he gets his doctoral degree in June.
"I should get a paper published before graduating from the university, then deal with work matters," he said."The epidemic makes me face problems sending my paper to publishing units, which will affect my graduation. If I can't publish the paper before June, my graduation will be postponed to December."
He said he is much luckier than his peers because he had already settled the job with the university.
"All I'm worried about is the paper－I'm not sure when will it be published. But most of my friends who haven't gotten job offers yet are anxious about their future jobs."
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