Hire and pay talents
with Horizons in
Hong Kong is an attractive destination for businesses seeking to recruit employees to expand their operations throughout the world. The city offers a highly educated and skilled workforce, as well as a wide range of support services for businesses. In addition, Hong Kong’s proximity to mainland China makes it an ideal base for companies looking to enter the Chinese market. The city also boasts a world-class transportation infrastructure, making it easy for businesses to connect with suppliers and customers around the globe.
Hong Kong is an excellent place to hire employees. The city has a highly educated workforce and a low unemployment rate. In addition, Hong Kong’s business environment is very conducive to success. The city is home to many multinational corporations and has a well-developed infrastructure. This makes it easy for businesses to operate in Hong Kong and to attract top talent. Moreover, the cost of living in Hong Kong is relatively low, which makes it an affordable place to live and work. As a result, Hong Kong is an attractive destination for businesses looking to expand their operations or to recruit new employees.
An Employer of Record (EOR) can be a valuable asset when hiring employees in Hong Kong. The process of recruiting and selecting employees is often time-consuming and difficult, especially for small businesses. An EOR can help to identify and screen potential candidates, saving your business time and effort. In addition, an EOR can provide access to a pool of talented workers that might otherwise be difficult to find. By outsourcing the recruitment process and other aspects of employment, including payroll, taxation, immigration, and benefits, businesses can focus on their core competencies instead of HR admin and red tape. In today’s competitive marketplace, an EOR can give businesses the edge they need to succeed.
7.41M (Labor Force 3.87 million)
Cantonese, Mandarin and English
Hong Kong Dollar (HKD)
GDP per capita
Ease of Doing Business
3rd in the world
Minimum of 7 days
The largest sector of the economy in Hong Kong is services, accounting for approximately 93% of GDP. This is due to the city’s status as an international hub for business, trade, and finance, particularly for those looking to access the Chinese market. Additionally, Hong Kong has a strong export-oriented economy and is the 8th trading entity in the world.
Despite a weaker-than-expected 2022, hindered by weakened global demand and cross-boundary transportation disruptions, Hong Kong’s economy is expected to experience steady growth over the long term, with an estimated GDP Annual Growth Rate of 3.8% in 2023 and strong fiscal reserves. This suggests that the country will be able to withstand any potential economic challenges in the future.
Hong Kong has always been known as a place that is friendly to businesses. This is because the city has low taxes and a light regulatory burden.
Despite the reasonably light regulations, there are several specific regulations that businesses operating in Hong Kong should be aware of. For example, the Competition Ordinance prohibits anti-competitive agreements and abuse of market power. The ordinance also establishes the Competition Commission, which is responsible for enforcing the ordinance. Businesses found to be in violation of the ordinance can be fined up to 10% of their worldwide turnover.
Another regulation businesses should be aware of is the Personal Data (Privacy) Ordinance, which establishes data protection principles and gives individuals the right to access their personal data held by organizations. Organizations found to be in violation of the ordinance can be fined up to HK$1 million (US$130,000).
The business culture in Hong Kong is highly hierarchical. This can be seen in the way that businesses are structured, with clear delineations between senior management and junior employees. This can be traced back to the Confucian traditions that still hold sway in Hong Kong society. In Confucianism, there is a great importance placed on respecting one’s elders and those in positions of authority. In Hong Kong, personal relationships are also important in business, and honesty is highly valued both in business and in personal relationships.
Job boards are the most popular way of advertising a job vacancy in Hong Kong. Although some of the global job boards like Indeed are popular, there are several Hong Kong-specific jobs boards that are very popular.
The most popular jobs boards in Hong Kong are:
If you don’t want to do the legwork yourself, you could hire a worldwide PEO like Horizons to work with you and find the best candidate for the position.
In Hong Kong, job interviews are often conducted in person. While some companies may opt for a virtual interview, especially for positions with remote or international responsibilities, face-to-face meetings are typically seen as the preferred method. This allows employers to assess nonverbal cues and evaluate a candidate’s professionalism and confidence in person. However, there is an increasing trend towards hybrid interviews, where a candidate may meet with HR representatives for initial screenings via video conference before being invited to an in-person interview with department managers or potential supervisors.
During the hiring process, employers in Hong Kong may inquire about a candidate’s current or previous compensation. The candidate is not legally obliged to provide the information.
When moving jobs, the typical salary increase in Hong Kong is about 10-20%.
As a global business hub, Hong Kong attracts diverse talent from all over the world. It is important for companies operating in this vibrant city to ensure that their onboarding process effectively introduces new employees to both the company culture and Hong Kong itself. This can include providing information about local customs, language resources, and paperwork related to work visas or residence permits. Offering culturally-sensitive training on appropriate business attire and communication styles can also be beneficial in creating a successful transition for new hires. By taking the time to thoroughly onboard employees in Hong Kong, companies can set themselves up for long-term success in this dynamic market.
There are a number of great remote working tools available for companies operating in Hong Kong. Some of the most popular options include:
By using these tools, companies can effectively communicate and collaborate with employees who are based in Hong Kong or elsewhere.
National public holidays in Hong Kong in 2023 include:
|1 Jan., 2023||New Year’s Day|
|1 Feb., 2023||Lunar New Year’s Festival|
|2 Feb., 2023||Lunar New Year’s Festival|
|3 Feb., 2023||Lunar New Year’s Festival|
|5 Apr., 2023||Ching Ming Festival|
|15 Apr., 2023||Good Friday|
|18 Apr., 2023||Ester Monday|
|1 May, 2023||Labor Day|
|9 May, 2023||Birthday of Buddha|
|3 Jun., 2023||Tuen Ng (Dragon Boat Festival)|
|1 Jul., 2023||Hong Kong SAR Establishment Day|
|12 Sept., 2023||Second Day of Mid-Autumn Festival|
|1 Oct., 2023||Chinese National Day|
|4 Oct., 2023||Chung Yeung Festival (Double Ninth)|
|25 Dec.2023||Christmas Day|
The typical salary increase for employees in Hong Kong was 2.5% in 2021, and this is expected to increase in 2022 to 3.2 %.
When making the decision to hire freelancers or employees in Hong Kong, many factors should be considered. On one hand, freelancers often offer more flexibility and may possess specialized skills. However, they also require more management and may not be as invested in the success of your company. Employees, on the other hand, typically offer a higher level of commitment and may be easier to train for specific tasks. They also often come with added benefits such as healthcare and paid vacation time. Ultimately, it is up to individual companies to weigh the pros and cons and determine which option best fits their needs. It may also be worthwhile to consider a mix of both freelancers and employees for a well-rounded workforce.
Hiring employees is often the simplest choice, especially when you work with a PEO partner like Horizon. Our team is highly knowledgeable in Hong Kong Employment Law and can assist you with hiring employees in Hong Kong successfully and compliantly.
Yes, you can hire foreigners in Hong Kong, in some circumstances.
In Hong Kong, foreign individuals can only work if they have a valid work visa. However, there are certain restrictions and requirements for hiring foreign workers. For instance, the position must be technical or executive in nature and cannot be filled by local talent. In addition, the company must obtain prior approval from the Immigration Department before offering employment to a foreign individual. Furthermore, companies must adhere to a quota system when hiring foreign workers and ensure that local employees are given priority over overseas hires. Ultimately, while it is possible to hire foreigners in Hong Kong, it is important to consider all relevant regulations before doing so.
Companies that are not based in Hong Kong but have established a business location within the country must apply to register as a non-Hong Kong company within one month of establishing their business presence. First, you will need to register your company with the Companies Registry and obtain a Business Registration Certificate.
To do this, businesses need to submit the following online or via post to the Companies Registry:
Finally, you will have to obtain any necessary licenses or permits for conducting business in Hong Kong. It is recommended that you seek the advice of a professional legal service or consultant to ensure smooth and successful registration of your new Hong Kong subsidiary or branch office.
In most cases, the fastest and safest way (from a compliance perspective) to get operations started in Hong Kong is to hire your first few employees with a global EOR like Horizons.
Hiring workers in Hong Kong is simple. If you’ve found a potential hire, get in touch with us for a free consultation and learn how we can help you hire your Hong Kong team in the next 48 hours.
Your business can easily hire employees in Hong Kong without opening a local entity. We handle local employment law, complex tax regulations, and international payroll in 180+ countries worldwide. All you need to do is focus on your business.