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Getting a job in HK as Interior Designer

  1. #1

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    Mar 2019
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    Question Getting a job in HK as Interior Designer

    Hi, currently I’m staying with my partner who already work here in HK and decided to looking for a job permanently, so I could get the working visa. I already applied and had many interviews with many companies as Interior Designer but none of them gave me an offer. They said that my CV and portfolio is impressive but they said they needed someone with more HK experience for the salary they can offer (my expexted salary is HKD 21.000-24.000) so that they are not proceeding with my application.

    Anyone can suggest how to get the job as Interior Designer in HK? Or anyone has networking in this industry? (I have 6 years working experience)

    Thank you in advance.


  2. #2

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    Apr 2003
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    Do you have any local accreditation, for example, BEAM Pro ? any BEAM Interiors experience? That salary seems too low for 6 yrs work experience, do speak and write Chinese? most contractors don't have English. You didn't mention CAD experience? I must these days.

    Have tried Interior Contractors? it is very common to bypass the design firm and hire a contractor directly which provides installation service with the "design". However, Chinese is normally required because you will be dealing with suppliers, firms making furniture in China, etc.

    Your best asset is not your experience it's your list of clients -- if you have clients and can bring work to the firm you'll get hired.

    Another option for consideration keep an eye on the BIG main contractors, often they start a little dept. handling interior design.

    jgl likes this.

  3. #3

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    Thank you for your reply.

    Unfortunately I don’t have local accreditation, but well noted will research about it more. I also didn’t speak chinese nor cantonese. Yes I think its a bit low, but it also suggested ampunt by the headhunter cause I don’t have any HK experience before. Eventhough some of the company still thinks that its too high for them.

    I have skills on :
    AutoCAD, sketch up + vray, photoshop, illustrator, lightroom, ms office

    Many contractors requires someone who speak mandarin or cantonese, I also tried in some retail industry who needs interior designer.


  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by gerardomayella
    Thank you for your reply.

    Unfortunately I don’t have local accreditation, but well noted will research about it more. I also didn’t speak chinese nor cantonese. Yes I think its a bit low, but it also suggested ampunt by the headhunter cause I don’t have any HK experience before. Eventhough some of the company still thinks that its too high for them.

    I have skills on :
    AutoCAD, sketch up + vray, photoshop, illustrator, lightroom, ms office

    Many contractors requires someone who speak mandarin or cantonese, I also tried in some retail industry who needs interior designer.
    Try H&M, i had a British friend working as an interior architect for their stores here, he's since returned back to the UK.
    shri likes this.

  5. #5

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    I suspect that the phrase "local experience" really means "speak Cantonese" here.

    JAherbert and chingleutsch like this.

  6. #6

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    Be careful about salary being too low....there is an unconfirmed but recognized minimum salary of 20k for GEP visas - and more is definitely better.


  7. #7

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    I think there's a mismatch here.
    Judging from your expected salary, your target is low to medium level position, which will definitely require you to be able to speak Cantonese as you will have to deal with local builders and suppliers who speak no English. Also, local companies are not willing to sponsor a work visa for that kind of positions.

    Management level position in large international companies is a better match. There you have a team of local staff working under you where you don't need to deal with builders and suppliers yourself.

    JAherbert likes this.

  8. #8

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    Mar 2019
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    Yeah I already tried it, I had phone interview with one of their recruiter. Thank you for the insight!

    Well noted! Thank you!

    Yes I noticed about that, and I only applied for the international one, but still after had interview with the hiring managers I got feedback ; “we needed someone more with HK experience for the salary we can offer”


  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebor
    Try H&M, i had a British friend working as an interior architect for their stores here, he's since returned back to the UK.
    Working for a large MNC or doing this as a service for MNCs is quite the niche - know folks who took care of brand and project management on a regional basis for large retail and corporate clients.
    Fiona in HKG likes this.
    Have a GeoExpat related problem - please create a support ticket.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by gerardomayella
    Yes I noticed about that, and I only applied for the international one, but still after had interview with the hiring managers I got feedback ; “we needed someone more with HK experience for the salary we can offer”
    as @littlemermaid said - firms will be confused, at 20k they will expect chinese speaker able to deal with vendors and contractors all day long.

    Hong Kong revolves around suppliers
    "we needed someone more with HK experience" probably means we need local Chinese speaker, who knows all the major suppliers /vendors, and does not need to ask who is dealer/supplier for this or that, and does have to ask who is supplier for Ytong block, of course, it can be learnt but takes time.

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