Resume/CV Guidelines

Given great scarcity of local managers familiar with international business practices and WTO rules, there is a strong demand for foreign-trained middle to senior managers, especially if they speak Mandarin. While English is becoming increasingly important in business communications, Mandarin Chinese is still the official language of the country. It is especially valuable for a jobseeker to provide resumes in Chinese if she/he is serious about employment in China.
With the business environment in a continuing state of flux, there are no rigid rules for the submission of a résumé/CV (curriculum vitae). Generally, however, it should be one page in length (or two maximum) and should include the following: personal information, which is placed at the top of the first page (i.e., name, address, phone number, and email information). Sometimes, gender and date of birth are expected to be included. A statement of career objectives may/may not follow.
Academic training is extremely important to the Chinese. Recent or soon-to-be graduates should place Education at the top of the résumé/CV, above Work Experience. The names, locations and dates of attendance for each institution should be given, along with areas of academic concentration and the type and date of degrees.
Under Work Experience, the positions held should be listed, in reverse-chronological order, with the name and location of the company, its field and focus, dates of employment, title(s) and major responsibilities and accomplishments. Information that is relevant to the position being sought and shows career development should be emphasized.
The next section of the résumé/CV covers other related information not already mentioned: awards, promotions or any special recognition received during employment. (The Chinese prefer modesty to arrogance so it is important to be careful with the wording.) In another small section, special skills, particularly on language proficiency, should be briefly listed, with competency levels in speaking, writing and reading in each language. Also note knowledge of any special computer languages and programs. Membership in and activities with relevant professional groups may be of interest to the employer, as may personal interests. The foreign jobseeker may also note citizenship. Some recent graduates include courses and training programs in this section. Any honors received and relevant extracurricular activities-particularly those that demonstrate leadership, teamwork and organizational abilities-should appear here, as well.

References are the last item on the résumé/CV. If responding to a job advertisement that asks for references, they should be included. Otherwise, the résumé/CV may state: “References available upon request.” Alternatively, all mentions of references may be left off the résumé/CV and clarified later.

It is becoming increasingly common, especially for younger applicants, to enclose a passport-sized photo with the application. Any photo should be professionally done.