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Business Chinese: Seven Popular Professional Job Titles Used in China

Jul. 12, 2019

HSK 3 quiz

Quick question? What’s the one thing that’s very controversial around the office? “Office jargon”! Employees are constantly steering the nuances of working in environments with people from so many different walks of life.

This issue can actually get much more controversial, especially if you introduce language dynamics into this already complicated issue. In the Chinese business world, it’s increasingly essential for you to learn how to express job titles, because multinational companies have increasingly hired foreign workers to work within China.

Challenge a Chinese Quiz to Learn a Unique Office Vocabulary

If you can understand how to say, and recognize the various job titles in Mandarin Chinese, you’ll be acknowledged and respected for your efforts around the office. There are various job titles that are used in Chinese, depending on the department, and the people who head them, and it’s important to familiarize yourself with the differences of these titles in order to easily integrate into office environment and culture.

Here are 7 of the most commonly used names for the departments in companies in China:

• 人事部 (Rénshì bù) HR Department (human resources)

• 行政部 (Xíngzhèng bù) Administration Department; Executive Department; Executive Branch

• 市场部 (Shìchǎng bù) Marketing Department

• 客服部 (Kèfú bù) CUS Department (customer service)

• 销售部 (Xiāoshòu bù) Sales Department

• 研发部 (Yánfā bù) R & D Department (research and development)

• 财务部 (Cáiwù bù) General Accounting Department

Using the aforementioned department names, here’s a dialogue exercise that uses “人事部 (Rénshì bù) HR (human resources) or personnel department” as an example:

Xiǎo Xīn: Nǐ shì nǎgè bùmén de?
小新:你是哪个部门的?
Xiao Xin: Which department are you from?

Lì Li: Wǒ shì rénshì bù de.
丽丽: 我是人事部的。
Li Li: I’m from the personnel department.

As you can see from the list above, companies in China have various departments that each work to make themselves function effectively. And just like their foreign counterparts, these company departments have their unique department names. Each department focuses on their job, which makes the company function. Furthermore, the head of each department is often assigned a job title, which is related to their level of management, responsibility, and authority within the company.

Here are some of the most commonly used job titles in Chinese:

• 经理 (Jīnglǐ) Manager

• 主管 (Zhǔguǎn) Director

• 销售员 (Xiāoshòuyuán) Salesman

• 工程师 (Gōngchéngshī) Engineer

• 秘书 (Mìshu) Secretary

• 助理 (Zhùlǐ) Assistant

• 会计 (Kuàijì) Accountant

Using the aforementioned job titles, here’s a dialogue exercise that uses “manager” as an example:

Xiǎo Míng: Xià Jūn, nǐ néng shùnbiàn bāng wǒ bǎ zhè fèn wénjiàn jiāogěi jīnglǐ ma?
小明:夏军,你能顺便帮我把这份文件交给经理吗?
Xiao Ming: Xia Jun, can you help me to give this document to the manager by the way?

Xià Jūn: Hǎo de, méi wèntí.
夏军: 好的,没问题。
Xia Jun: OK, no problem.

Learn Further About a Useful Chinese Phrase: 顺便问一下 (Shùnbiàn wèn yí xià)

Job titles are quite significant in China. It’s very useful for you to learn how, and when to use each title within the office. The correct usage of the job titles makes for better communication, and have a good effect on work flow in the office. Correct use of job titles will help employees make sense of their position in the company, allowing them to acknowledge their individual work as worthwhile, and apart of a meaningful whole!

HSK 3 quiz
1. If you are a new accountant, which of the following departments do you belong to?

A. 行政部 (Xíngzhèng bù)

B. 人事部 (Rénshì bù)

C. 财务部 (Cáiwù bù)

D. 市场部 (Shìchǎng bù)

2. Read the dialogue and answer the question below.

Jīnglǐ: Lì Li, wǒ xià zhōu nǎ jǐ tiān méiyǒu xíngchéng ānpái?
经理:丽丽,我下周哪几天没有行程安排?

Lì Li: Nín xià zhōu sān dào zhōu wǔ dōu méiyǒu rènhé ānpái.
丽丽:您下周三到周五都没有任何安排。

Jīnglǐ: Nà nǐ míngtiān qù bāng wǒ dìng yì zhāng xià zhōu qù Shànghǎi de jīpiào ba .
经理:那你明天去帮我定一张下周去上海的的机票吧。

Lì Li: Hǎo de, jīnglǐ.
丽丽:好的,经理。

What’s the most likely occupation for Li Li according to the dialogue?

A. 会计 (Kuàijì)

B. 秘书 (Mìshu)

C. 销售员 (Xiāoshòuyuán)

D. 工程师 (Gōngchéngshī)

See Answer Analysis

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