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Internship Program in China | Insights and Guides

Though China is become the most attractive destination for young graduates in the area of International Internships, it takes a good decision and planning to get the best out of it. Each city in China has its strong points hence Interns should consider knowing some basics before patronizing Internship programs. This article sheds more light on what to watch. Don’t miss this!!! Because taking an Engineering Internship in cities like Shanxi, Gansu and Xingjian will be a complete waste of time and energy likewise seeking to learn Chinese language in Eastern part of China will not work out well.

Note: Not every Chinese City serves your Interest as an Intern get a deeper insight to make a decision

The fact still stands accurate and updated: China is the hottest destination for International Internship Programs as we dubbed it; Internship Programs in China. This is true as more Multinational Business already located in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen Guangzhou and other Chinese cities, look to recruit talented young graduates with the requisite skills to contribute to corporate revolutions.

Haven opened up joined the WTO in 2001, China began to experience the boom in economic development over the recent past. A recent top business destination survey by Forbes reported China to be Number 2 in the world; this vindicats the number of multinational organizations setting up in China. No wonder, since 2005, The World Bank has been raking China as a real business destination. China became the world’s largest production hub and now has take over US as the largest economy using GDP at PPP as reported by IMF. This means a lot to business already operating in China and others who are considering globalizing.

What does this mean for prospective interns?

The development of Chinese Economy brings several advantages for all including Young Graduates. The companies have been enjoying their fair share as we see more US companies moving their core manufacturing concerns to China.

Young people could benefit from Paid Internships in China located in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, which presents a platform to gain a wealth of experience in the fastest growing economy in the world, as well as encounter Opportunities consistent with their career aspirations.

But to reap these maximum benefits, the decision and placements must be done properly, in the right setting, at the right time and with the right mindset. I will try to touch on factors to critically consider as well as some necessary information regarding selected cities especially those cities listed in 2015 Forbes top 10 Chinese Business cities worth interning.

Preparation and start time

Starting an Internship in China requires that young people begin the process as quickly as possible. Although this point applies not only to China Internship Programs, it is a relevant factor. Coming from a communist background, Chinese companies and even multinational organizations turn to respect procedure and long channels of operation and approval. I spoke with a couple of Human Resource Managers whom I help to develop their Internship programs in China, and the dominating reason is that the labor law has several gray areas which are worth considering before accepting interns, and this takes some time. I have encountered several reputable multinational organizations during my career as a Human Resource expert who takes an average of 4 weeks to confirm interns.

On this backdrop, It is highly recommended that internship participants start their China Internship program applications between 12 to 15 weeks or even much earlier to land a good internship offer. Number one reason is that starting early gives the placement agency adequate time to prepare adequately to deal with the bureaucracies of the host organizations. In the process, they can generate as many offers as possible. Many offers indicate varieties and varieties lead to best offer selection. CIP Limited and other Internship Placement agencies continue to give offers till the applicant is satisfied but when the process starts late, due to visa applications participants have to resort to the available offer which might not be the best.

Chinese cities and corresponding sectors

The city which acts as the location to internships in a relevant, pivotal and integral (I tried to lay emphasis here because you needed to look out for it) decision. Joining a consultancy program in Xian is a wrong decision as well as joining a Mandarin program in Guangzhou same applies to taking an International Trade Internship Beijing will be a miscalculated step.

Beijing is ideal for Consultancy, Law, some Engineering disciplines, Finance, NGO, and Complete cultural immersion. Shanghai is good for International Trade, Finance, and Investment, Consultancy, Law and Security trading. Shenzhen in the same vain is right for Engineering, Finance and Consultancy, Investment, Commodities and stock trading due to the existence of the Shenzhen Stock market. Guangzhou is ideal for International Trading, Heavy Duty Industry, and Electronics.

Size of the company

Since I joined the Intern Recruitment Industry several years back, I noticed there is a growing unsubstantiated demand for internship placements into large corporations. Those interns I worked with in the past, I made it known to them that size of a company matters depending on the agenda for joining the internship program. Usually, Internship products would like to give a signal in the job market that they have been able to acquire skills from organizations similar to their dream companies. This is neither here nor there. I will briefly outline the circumstances below:

  • Candidates in very technical areas like engineering which includes electronics, chemical engineering, material engineering, New energy and others do not need to venture into requiring big business because there is a likelihood they might not get the exposure required. Because these are technical knowledge acquisition and what matters is an ability to perform and not the origin of the knowledge. My long time friend in China Mobile made it clear that technical skills do not require any other condition than the ability to perform. He also made it clear that they at China Mobile only require job applicants to prove their skills and they will be hired.
  • For those venturing into Consultancy, Finance and Investment banking, size could matter. The size of a company will determine the depth of services offered yet; there is a caveat here as the fact that the firm is huge does not mean you will be exposed to all their services.
  • For those willing to stay in China and launch their career, small businesses have 40% more possibility of hiring than large organizations. I made this known to an Intern from the UK who would like to start his IT career in China. He was offered an internship placement in Shenzhen where Huawei is officially positioned and after listening to his story, I asked him to take a relatively smaller medium sized organization based in Beijing and my guess was right he landed a fresh opportunity to work in China.

China has become a fascinating place to seek internship opportunities, and it takes a careful consultancy to secure a superb placement which serves the agenda of experience enhancement as well as other sided reasons.

There are therefore critical factors to be considered by Interns before accepting offers. First of all city and secondly, the size of the company decided alongside with the sector of internship and purpose of the internship project. Interns should not be addicted to large organizations it rather limits opportunities in some circumstances. That is why at China Internship Placement, every internship placement is considered a project and every placement is crafted based on its merit.

Do you want a candid opinion about your internship offers? I am available every weekend to handle these issues, and I could be contacted via, and I will respond as quickly as possible. I also created a thread in the CIP forum about general queries about evaluating internship offers. Post a comment and I will answer in due course.


Jobs in China

Jessica Suotmaa

Author: Jessica Suotmaa

Education & Career Enthusiast


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