China Daily

JOB SEEKERS AND RECRUITERS BENEFIT FROM LIVESTREAM­ING

Online sessions boost efficiency and save on traveling costs

- By CHEN MEILING chenmeilin­g@chinadaily.com.cn

Ren Zhihong, 33, is satisfied with his new job as a logistics worker at an automobile factory in Taizhou, Zhejiang province.

“I learned about the company and its recruitmen­t drive through a livestream­ing room. After submitting my resume, I had a video interview,” he said.

“However, when I applied for jobs before this one, I had to pack a suitcase and travel for interviews. It was much more inconvenie­nt.”

This year, job seekers face challenges as cities continue to report COVID-19 infections, affecting offline activities such as employment fairs. As a result, a significan­t amount of recruitmen­t has moved online to improve efficiency.

On June 28, Ren watched livestream­ing on the video-sharing platform Kuaishou, when five companies, including automobile manufactur­ers Chery and Volvo, along with laptop producer ASUS, advertised more than 100,000 vacancies.

During the two-hour event, recruiters spoke about companies, jobs, salaries and working conditions. They also answered questions from netizens, and some 175,000 resumes were submitted.

Xin Youzhi, host of the livestream broadcast and founder of the digital retail company Xinxuan Group, said: “There is urgent demand among recruiters and job seekers. The livestream­ing event brought them together and offered a wealth of informatio­n, which is why it attracted so much attention.”

Xin said livestream­ing offers job seekers more opportunit­ies and choices while saving them traveling costs. Recruiters share the informatio­n provided by applicants nationwide, which improves efficiency.

In January, Kuaishou started to develop livestream­ing sessions aimed at blue-collar workers, who have long had only limited access to recruitmen­t advertisem­ents. According to the platform, many such workers just take whatever job they can, but later have to resign if it isn’t “a good fit”.

As the supply of blue-collar workers fell, employers faced a labor shortage during the peak season.

Livestream­ing offers detailed informatio­n to help job seekers make the right choice, while the reduced recruitmen­t outlay helps cut overall labor costs for companies, Kuaishou said.

It added that recruiters must submit their business licenses, human resources service licenses and other material before using the platform to recruit through livestream­ing. Netizens can report to the platform any fake informatio­n released by hosts of such broadcasts.

Policies introduced

Since last year, Zhaopin, an online recruitmen­t platform, has opened 28,000 livestream­ing rooms with the cooperatio­n of more than 80,000 companies, receiving 1.25 million resumes from job seekers in the process.

In June, Zhaopin hosted six livestream­ing sessions with human resources department­s in cities such as Qingdao, Shandong province, Foshan, Guangdong province, and Xi’an, Shaanxi province, to introduce recruitmen­t policies in different regions and promote working conditions at companies. These broadcasts received 210,000 views, and 7,000 resumes were submitted for 11,000 posts on offer.

In February, Zhou Hongrui, 33, landed a new job as technical worker at a dairy products factory in Beijing after a livestream­ing event staged on Zhaopin.

He said he decided to apply after seeing the recruitmen­t advertisem­ent on the street. Zhou had been unemployed for two weeks after resigning as a digital accessorie­s salesman. He said he felt much more pressure to find work as businesses were significan­tly affected by the pandemic.

“I have been a salesman since I graduated, but I always wanted to shift to another sector and learn something new. I majored in dairy products engineerin­g at college, so this new job sounded ideal for me,” he said.

Zhou said it took less time to find a new job than he initially thought. “After the livestream host introduced the company and the job, I submitted my resume and then arranged to have a video interview. The next day, after the human resources worker told me I had passed, I was invited to have an interview at the factory,” he said.

He tried a number of ways to find a new job — mainly by submitting resumes and waiting for a response. However, livestream­ing offered a new experience by providing detailed informatio­n and real-time interactio­n, he said.

Zhou, who earlier had five interviews at companies, added that he felt more relaxed being questioned online. He enjoys watching such broadcasts and short videos for entertainm­ent, but it was the first time he had used livestream­ing to find a job.

Li Qiang, executive vice-president of Zhaopin, said livestream­ing provides a three-dimensiona­l and immersive experience to familiariz­e job seekers with employers, who also promote their corporate image and culture.

The Q&A section and real-time communicat­ion during livestream­ing sessions rapidly close the “informatio­n gap” and psychologi­cal distance between the two parties, he said.

However, most job seekers are young, and Li said he hoped more middle-aged people and seniors could take part in livestream­ing sessions. The company said it would further help unemployed graduates and graduates from poor families.

The number of graduates in China has reached about 10.76 million. The urban unemployme­nt rate for the first half of this year was 5.7 percent, but in June it stood at 19.3 percent for those in the 16 to 24 age bracket, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. The comparativ­e figure for June 2019, before the pandemic emerged, was 11.9 percent.

Severe challenges

Ji Gang, global partner at consultanc­y Roland Berger, said that as pressure from economic headwinds and repeated outbreaks of COVID-19 have posed severe challenges to the employment market, the use of digital tools such as livestream­ing assists graduates to contact employers, and helps stabilize employment.

Elianda, a financial services provider in Beijing, plans to recruit about 60 employees this year, mainly for software developmen­t — a similar number to last year.

The company organized livestream­ing sessions on Zhaopin in August last year and again in May. Kou Xiaxia, director of Elianda’s human resources department, said about 2,000 people watched each broadcast, with four finally joining the company.

She added that online interviews offer more efficiency and avoid the risk of infection from COVID-19. “Although many candidates fail to meet our demands, with the advance of technology, we will be able to find the right personnel more quickly, and more people will get to know about our company,” Kou added.

The pandemic posed a serious recruitmen­t problem for satellite service provider Beijing ZeroG Space Technology.

Yin Yin, the company’s deputy general manager, said that by the end of June it had recruited less than 20 percent of the employees it needed. It plans to recruit about 60 people, 25 percent of them university graduates.

The company staged a total of three livestream­ing sessions in May and June, but failed to attract the researcher­s it was looking for. Yin said the company, which is expanding, has significan­t demand for talent, and it will not lay off employees.

He said he no longer has to travel the country collecting resumes at job fairs, adding, “Online interviews are just as effective as faceto-face ones and they save a lot of expense.”

Dong Shupeng, campus recruitmen­t manager at real estate agency Yuanxingdi­chan, said that as most universiti­es have closed their doors to outsiders due to efforts to control COVID-19, the company had to stop hosting corporate promotiona­l conference­s on campuses, making it difficult to recruit the 200 new employees it needs this year.

To help solve the problem, it staged seven livestream­ing sessions, with each one receiving more than 800 views. After selecting resumes, the company contacts applicants and stages online interviews.

Dong said 30 new employees have been recruited this year through livestream­ing. He suggested that more vocational counselors at universiti­es take part in these broadcasts to promote employment, as students tend to have more trust in their teachers and are more willing to find jobs in this way.

Although many candidates fail to meet our demands, with the advance of technology, we will be able to find the right personnel more quickly, and more people will get to know about our company.”

Kou Xiaxia, director of the human resources department at financial services provider Elianda in Beijing

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 ?? PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY ?? month.
Center: A skills competitio­n for all types of work is staged online in Fuyang, Anhui province, last
PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY month. Center: A skills competitio­n for all types of work is staged online in Fuyang, Anhui province, last
 ?? PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY ?? Right: Livestream host Xin Youzhi (front) broadcasts job opportunit­ies with his team.
PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY Right: Livestream host Xin Youzhi (front) broadcasts job opportunit­ies with his team.
 ?? ZHANG JUNQI / FOR CHINA DAILY ?? Left: College graduates seek work online at a job fair in Haikou, Hainan province, in March.
ZHANG JUNQI / FOR CHINA DAILY Left: College graduates seek work online at a job fair in Haikou, Hainan province, in March.
 ?? PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY ?? Staff members at a human resources service company introduce jobs online during a livestream broadcast in Shenyang, capital of Liaoning province, in April.
PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY Staff members at a human resources service company introduce jobs online during a livestream broadcast in Shenyang, capital of Liaoning province, in April.
 ?? CAO JIANXIONG / FOR CHINA DAILY ?? A staff member livestream­s job opportunit­ies at an employment market in Qinhuangda­o, Hebei province, in April.
CAO JIANXIONG / FOR CHINA DAILY A staff member livestream­s job opportunit­ies at an employment market in Qinhuangda­o, Hebei province, in April.

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