We asked one of our clients to give us their impressions at a China factory visit during procurement recently. Read below to get an idea of how they felt during this trip, regarding employing & managing promo gift factory workers. This is one of a series of blogs that we will title: Buyer Diary.

Employing and managing factory workers are not as easy as it seems. Generally, promo gift factory workers are classified into different groups. These groups each have their way of employing and paying the staff. Usually, the attitude of workers as well as job scope assigned is generally similar for those classified under the same group.

Employing and Managing Promo Gift Factory Workers

 These workers can be classified into 3 various categories as follows –

  • Professional Workers
  • Self-Trained Workers
  • Stand-in Workers

Based on these 3 categories of workers, we will evaluate the following factors –

  • How to employ these workers
  • Paying these workers
  • Work Attitude
  • Job scope

Professional Workers

These workers are usually professionally trained in a specific area of skill. They are usually full-time workers and tend to stay with a factory for a long period of time. It is easier to get these professional workers through the inside circle of the manufacturing industry, making use of relationship and ties.

Professional workers work hard and get paid better than other workers because of their specialization. They are paid even more in any case of a rushed production. With a professional working attitude, these workers work hard for what they are paid for. Job scope wise, they are assigned most jobs that require experience and knowledge. Most of this would be for operating machinery in the factory.

Here we have a photo featuring professional workers.

Professional Workers - Promo Gift Factory

Professional Workers – Promo Gift Factory

Self-Trained Workers

Self-trained workers are just like an intern being trained and promoted to a full time staff position that requires a bachelor degree, which the intern does not have. Self-trained workers are loyal to the factory as the factory has put in time and effort to train these workers. They are given job scope that does not require much specialization, but requires a certain level of skill to perform.

Such job scopes are for example, sculpting the promo gift to a general required shape. These workers work hard, based on loyalty to the firm. Notice the difference between professional workers and self-trained workers on the working attitude. Both groups work hard for the different cause. Once the loyalty for the company is lost, these workers are unlikely to stay. Self-trained workers are paid an average amount of pay.

Stand-in Workers

This may not be popular for most countries, but stand-in workers make up a significant number in China. These workers are usually employed from the labour centre, where they wait daily for bosses with jobs to pick them up. The details of the job scope and payment are being negotiated in the labour centre with no third party involved. This means that there is no contract between both parties; stand-in workers are free to go anytime, and bosses can choose to fire them anytime if there is no work available.

Once a job is being completed, these stand-in workers return back to the labour centre again to be “picked-up” by the next available job. These workers are being paid a minimum wage, which is similar across all industries. This is because the job scope assigned to them can be performed easily, without much skill required. An example would be cleaning up the factory, or simply boxing up the promo gifts.

They work the bare minimum, to be paid the bare minimum. This is a common understanding in China, where bosses don’t expect these workers to give their very best.

Retaining Employees

No matter which industry you are in, it comes back to square one when speaking of how to retain employees. These are the few basic guidelines to keep employees satisfied with their jobs –

  • Pay what the employees are worth
  • Treat employees with respect
  • Provide the platform for employees to grow
  • Listen to employees
  • Be reasonable, in terms of workload assigned and salary paid