On Friday, Zhaopin.com announced their annual China Best Employer Award with Tencent as the #1 employer in China.

This annual award is jointly issued by Zhaopin and Peking University’s Institute of Social Science Survey. Now in its 11th consecutive year, the award has become a valuable reference for job seekers in China. This year, more than 9,700 companies participated in the selection, an increase of 80% over last year. The winners were selected based on their performance in brand strategy, reputation, organization structure, employee training, salary and welfare, and working environment. Their performance was evaluated via employee survey, expert opinion, online voting and HR questionnaire.

China Best Employer Awards 2016 Winners

Award winners

Winners of the 2016 awards were led by a Top 10 that included, in order: Tencent, China Merchants Bank, BMW China, Alibaba, the People’s Insurance Company (Group) of China, Vanke, Ping An Insurance (Group) Company of China, IBM, Mercedes-Benz, and Starbucks, which are all leaders in their respective industries. The full ranked list of the Top 30 Employers is included below.

Among this year’s “Top 30 Employers”, 22 are local, indicating the rise of Chinese companies in both reputation and ability to compete for talent with prestigious global brands. In term of industries, seven companies are from IT/internet sector, six are from auto manufacturing, and four are from the finance sector.

Key insights from companies

“Attracting and retaining talent is a core competency in the New Economy,” said Sheng Guo, Chief Executive Officer and Director of Zhaopin. “How to recruit and retain talent is an essential strategy for employers to drive growth and success. We found in our survey that respect, welfare and benefits, and equality are the most important factors when employees are evaluating employers and trying to decide where to work.”

“The rise of workplace communities is a significant trend we have identified this year,” he added. “Workplace communities are against centralization and hierarchy in traditional organizations. In such emerging and dynamic communities, employees share the same values, are equal partners in flat structures, and are empowered to exercise their creativity.”

Besides the “Top 30 Employers in China”, Zhaopin also announced the “Best Employers for Female Workers”,  “Best Employers for University Students”, “Socially Responsible Employers of the Year” and “Employers with the Most Potential” for 2016.

Female employees more stable and loyal

Winners of the “Best Employers for Female Workers” this year included Alibaba, BMW China, Bank of Communications, JD.com, Joyoung, Microsoft China, Vipshop, Starbucks, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, and Gree Electric Appliances.

Zhaopin’s survey found that female employees are more stable and loyal to their employers than male employees. About 38% of female employees have never changed jobs, compared with 27% for male employees. About 20% of female employees have worked for their current employers for 5 years and more, compared with 10% for male employees.

As for career goals over the next three years, female employees are giving more priority to improvement in skillsets, recognition of capabilities, and realization of self-value, while male employees are seeking career success and realization of self-value, according to Zhaopin survey.

Respect is key for college students

Winners of the “Best Employers for University Students” in 2016 included IBM, Wanda, GOME, Lenovo, Nestle, Tencent, Perfect World, Sina, IKEA and China International Marine Containers (Group).

When college students are looking for their ideal employers, the most important factor is “respect for employees.” Other key considerations for college students included good income outlook, equal and fair treatment, welfare and benefits, and an attractive company culture.

Foreign companies are still the top choice with 36.6% of college students, followed by state-own enterprises with 21.4%. The top five cities most attractive to college students are Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Guangzhou, and Hangzhou. For college graduates, the average expected monthly salary for their first job is 5,792 yuan, according to Zhaopin’s survey.

Award Winners of 2014 and 2015

Top 30 Employers in China 2015: IBM, Baidu, Qihoo 360, BAIC Group, FAW, CGB, Shanghai Volkswagen, PICC Property and Casualty Company Limited, PINGAN, Hainan Airlines, China Southern Airlines, JD.com, Ifeng.com, China Minsheng Bank, SF Express, Canon, Toyota, Joyoung, Hisense, Deppon, Neusoft, China Eastern, BP China, A.O.Smith, Suning, Xdf.cn, Thyssenkrupp

Top 30 Employers in China 2014: Alibaba, China Merchants Bank, BMW, Tencent, FAW, Baidu, BAIC Group, PICC Property and Casualty Company Limited, Qihoo 360, Starbucks, Mercedes-Benz, IBM, Shanghai Volkswagen, Hainan Airlines, Ifeng.com, Canon, Bosch, JD.com, PINGAN, SF Express, CGB, Tsingtao, Lvdihn.com, BP China, NUSKIN, XCMG, WEICHAI, Neusoft, CreditEase

Image Credit: Zhaopin

Eva Yoo is Shanghai-based tech writer. Reach her at evayoo@technode.com