At a job fair held by the Hong Kong YWCA on Monday, a company offering 200 jobs received only 12 applications, despite paying a monthly salary of HK$12,800. This is close to the starting salary expected by university graduates, and included perks like double pay and overtime allowance.
It's a pretty good package, considering a job in the food and beverage or retail industries pays close to minimum wage. So why didn't more people apply?
The main reason, according to one human resources manager present at the fair, is that the workplace is a non-air-conditioned warehouse.
"Many applicants are turned off by the heat. There is no air conditioning in the warehouse," she said. "Summer is the peak season for staff to quit because they cannot stand the heat."
Catheriny Yu, 17, from Carmel Secondary School said she wouldn't be able to work somewhere without air conditioning. "It's really uncomfortable. For students like me, who are working for experience more than money during the summer, it is really harsh - especially in summer," she says.
Human resources expert Alexa Chow Yee-ping said this generation of young people cannot take hardship because their parents are overprotective.
"Parents don't want to their kids to suffer. Today's young people are less tough compared to people born in the '50s and '60s," she says. "With little interest in jobs like warehouse assistants, cleaners and dishwashers, employers will have no choice but to raise the pay."
What do you think? How much does a job have to pay before you don't care about sweating through your uniform? Or would you always take a pay cut to stay cool?