How high are our chances to score a decent job in Taipei?


I have never came across a single Taiwanese person, including human resources, apart from those teaching Chinese, who knew the HSK.


TBF, Shenzhen has been moving a lot of manufacturing away from the city . The plan is for it to be an entirely services based economy.


I mean my pal. He was unemployed for half a year, looking for something in his field with a decent salary. Shanghai it was.

Happy he ain’t.


Yep, does seem that learning Mandarin is the passport to:
A) Unsatisfactory career on a pleasant but insular island with few financial rewards.
B) Work in a polluted, crowded city with slow internet access and no access to anything you would actually want to do on the internet. Also a growing veneer of xenophobia.




Depressing but kind of on point. :grinning:


Hi Ran,

I love novels :slight_smile:

Thanks a lot for all the useful insights. It seems from the feedback here and the feedback on other forums that 60-80k for a local marketing gig is standard, which is roughly the equivalent of a certified English teacher’s salary. And even for the local gigs I have to show I have ARC-worthy skills like other languages, superpowers etc.

The best case scenario I see is being hired by a multinational and being sent there on an expat contract. I will try to explore that route with my wife.

Humid air and traditional Chinese are not huge problems. My first year I only learned 繁体字, then I switched to simplified characters. We are torn between HK and Taiwan to be honest. We thought Taiwan would be better cause the living costs are lower and the culture is more relaxed. (We love the food, no worries)

We both want to work and if it were not for the visa requirements we could probably pay our own bills with freelancing and just keep working for ourselves…

After one year or so we want to find an Asian investor anyway and start our own business. The nice thing about Taiwan is that it’s super close to Japan, Korea etc. so we would be right in the middle of things…


Thanks Orange, no worries we are always open to honest feedback. Seems like it boils down to having an expat contract, or settling for relative low local salaries (compared to international standards). I think I can manage a Chinese business environment but I also don’t want to be the standard translator for the whole department. It sounds a lot like this is the role you are slotted into as a foreigner working in a pre-dominant Chinese company. I would have to adapt to that.

Taipei, HK and Chengdu are our top 3 cities we are looking into. I’m not gonna do Tier 1 mainland cities no matter what, I lived in Shanghai and I found it is full of arrogant french expats and very stressful and aggressive. I know that HK is expensive too but we like the climate and the culture there more.

I have to say salary is not our number 1 concern, after a year or two we want to start our own operation with external investment and for that, we will have to travel around and pitch to different people anyway.

At the end of the day, it will boil down to what job, with what salary we can get. If it turns out we have options to choose from, than we would rather go to Taiwan, because I think it’s a pretty sweet place with a nice mix of Japanese, Korean and Chinese influences. But we are not in a rush and we will loot out all the options before settling for a substandard offer.

I should probably mention as well that I’m kinda specialized in creative industries, premium and luxury goods. So far I think Taiwan is mostly tech and all my stuff seems to be more prevalent in HK.


Thanks Spaint, I made a list of agencies and job boards already. I’m just waiting until Spring festival over to start my applications. Also added bunch of people on linked-in already (I’m very active there anyway).


Thanks for the advice, I will look into Mercedes, Green Energy and the chamber of commerce for connections like that.

And I got it, no English teaching for me and nobody wants to learn German (sad face)
We are not in a rush, we will keep trying until we get a nice contract, I might consider working for 60-80k if my wife can easily get a job too. Cause we have our own side projects we want to finance and we have goals when it comes to entrepreneurship and investments …so we are in it for the long run. I have lived in Germany, England, and Spain. I prefer Asia to Europe, even with all its difficulties.


Currently, we are under the minimum 3 Million TWD with our freelance work. But in the long run, we want to work for ourselves again. The corporate ladder is not really for us. I’m more willing to bite the sour apple of 10h workdays, inflexible work culture, and oppression for a while and push our own thing forward in our free time in a place that we enjoy than be in Berlin and be bored to death with my surroundings. Taiwan is also cheaper in terms of living costs…according to Numbeo and all other public sources at least.

I would also never work in Shenzhen or Shanghai. Too stressful.


Exactly, but we don’t want to settle for just being employees anyway. We intend to travel and find investors to fund our idea eventually, the ARC + corporate job is more of a legal requirement for us. That’s why we are relatively open towards Taiwan, HK or Chengdu…I just don’t want to go to Tier 1 cities since I have been to all of them and it’s just not that great in my opinion.


Taipei is not a bad place to start a business. Costs are low and you have easy access to China market/ manufacturing


A certain institute in Taipei proudly announced some years ago that it was licensed to conduct the HSK. Apparently it’s been discontinued.

There was a job ad in Forumosafieds, maybe one year ago, asking for high level Chinese i.e. “at least HSK 6 or TOCFL 5”.


I mean , possibly a couple of people have heard of it. I sat the HSK and it has gotten absolute blank faces here


One more thing guys I found this survey by Robert Walters:

According to this the average salary of a marketing manager for the industries I’m experienced in is anywhere between 1.5 Million TWD up to even 5 Million! Now I don’t know if that’s just expat packages only but it doesn’t look like. This is very different from the 60-80k advertised here.

By now I have kinda realized that getting an expat package is way better than being hired on a localized contract. Also being on the ground vs applying from overseas is a very different outlook which will make things also more difficult. But before I settle for a shitty contract I rather keep on freelancing and networking until I find something decent.

This goes for HK as well. Chengdu I realized has the most shitty salaries ever. 12k Euros annual salary as a marketing manager. No thank you…


Figures are basic salaries exclusive of benefits & bonuses unless otherwise specified.

1,500,000/y = 125,000/m
5,000,000/y = 416,666/m

With that kind of salary you could even afford to live in Xinyi! :money_mouth:


Well Robert Walters is one of the big ones like Hudson or Michael Paige. They should know the market. Now I’m very 心乱如麻 when it comes to what I can believe or not. And having to wait until February with my applications is gonna drive me nuts aaaaah :smiley:

I mean if I can’t get one of those contracts or an expat package right away I would rather keep on working here, get certified for certain things and then try again.


Man, why come on here. Look, maybe you can find those kind of salaries, but I have no idea where they are getting them from. We are on the front lines working in Taiwan and know how much people get paid. Nobody is advertising anything, just dont have those type of expectations. In my crystal ball I am seeing a lot of frustration and cultural issues.


Well only time will tell I guess. Time to leave that topic alone and enjoy couple brezels as long as I still can :slight_smile: