Turnover a worry in China
PROJECT MANAGER PM Group is expanding its Chinese and Indian operations to meet growing demand in Asia, although like many companies operating in China, it finds retaining staff a challenge.
“We’re doing exceptionally well in China, the biggest issue is resources. It’s hiring the Chinese and getting them to stay. We see China and India as the places where it’s happening for the next five or 10 years,” said Michael Shelly, director of PM Group.
It’s important not to grow too fast, in case people drop the ball, because if a project does not work out, it can set a company back.
“We’re hiring engineers and architects. You find great engineers but they don’t have the experience. The good ones will learn and want to learn. India has fantastic engineers, but they often don’t have the experience. The training is good,” said Mr Shelly.
The group has about 60 people in its China, Singapore and India offices. Staff turnover in China is much higher than in India.
It is working on five or six large projects in China for multinational companies, building life science, medical technology, nutrition and food facilities.
“In China we are focused on food and pharma because there is so much work. It’s the kind of place you can spread yourself too thin chasing work, because there’s enough opportunity. We focus on the eastern seaboard, within a 100km radius of Shanghai accounting for 80 per cent of our work,” said Mr Shelly.
Headquartered in Ireland, PM Group carries out project and construction management, architecture and engineering design and various technical and consulting services.