Engineers in VR, 3D social connection are promised fat remunerations
The emerging Metaverse industry is now generating a recruitment boom in China, with companies offering high salaries, scrambling for talent to gain an early foothold in this future virtual world, even as many in the tech sector are feeling the pinch from global economic uncertainties which have led to layoffs and hiring freezes.
Searching the term „metaverse“ on liepin.com, a major recruitment portal in China, a Global Times reporter located a long list of metaverse-related positions from a wide range of industries.
One hiring description on the top of the list is from a well-known tech company hunting for a general manger for its „metaverse unit.“ Annual salary for the position is as high as one million yuan ($148,400).
Firms such as tech firm Baidu, and electric appliance maker GOME Retail Holdings, have also offered metaverse-related positions, the Global Times found on liepin.com.
Driven by the high demand, annual salaries for fresh graduates in the industry can reach 400,000 to 500,000 yuan, and senior engineers with 10 years of experience are paid between one million to two million yuan per year. For particularly outstanding talent, four million to five million yuan is not uncommon, according to Shanghai-based media thepaper.com, citing industry insiders.
What kind of talent does the Metaverse industry need right now? Industry players said leading talent and senior engineers such as face pinch engineers, virtual architects, and engine development technicians, are in short supply.
„We have been seeking senior engineers for a while, especially those engaging in algorithms optimization, deep machine learning and engineering architecture,“ a manager from a Beijing-based virtual reality (VR) hardware maker who asked to speak on the condition of anonymity, told the Global Times on Sunday.
Most Metaverse-related jobs may have been born from traditional positions, but metaverse roles are more like „all-rounders“, said the manager.
„For example, a traditional game planner may only need to be familiar with the configuration of systems, values, plots among others, but planning in the metaverse field also requires a considerable understanding of the resource production process of 3D art,“ he said.
It’s difficult to find someone with matching abilities, the manager said.
The boom has also prompted many to turn to the metaverse-related firms. James Yu, a face pincher at a Beijing-based metaverse company, is among them.
„I was once doing a visual-recognition related job at a gaming company, but now I’m pitching faces for avatars here,“ Yu told the Global Times on Sunday, noting that the project life-cycle could be long as the industry is still in its infancy.
„For instance, the project I’m working on has been going on for two years, many have left since no results have come out in the course,“ Yu said, noting that he stayed because of betting on the future for the metaverse.
The global Metaverse market size is anticipated to reach a market value of around $1.8 trillion by 2030, growing at an annual rate of around 45.8 percent from 2022 to 2030, according to a report by Acumen Research and Consulting.
Graphic: Tang Tengfei/GT
Metaverse-related sectors are also expected to see a growth boom. Data from market consultancy International Data Corp (IDC) showed that the investment scale of the global AR and VR market was close to $14.67 billion in 2021, and is expected to increase to $74.73 billion in 2026, with a compound annual growth rate of 38.5 percent.
„Now it’s only the beginning. A ‚true‘ Metaverse industry is probably still a decade or two away, and it’s also far from ‚booming‘,“ Yu said, but he’s confident that the with the government’s oversight and clear regulation at this early stage, Chinese companies can avoid setbacks and gain an early foothold on the back of the country’s huge market.
The China Mobile Communication Association Metaverse Committee was set up in Beijing on October 15, 2021 to study national industrial policy and mobile communication development strategy.
As a national social organization, the committee also coordinates with industrial experts at home and abroad and help promote exchanges and cooperation between varied enterprises. So far, it has hosted various seminars, forums, research and investigation activities related to the mobile communication industry.
IDC said the IT-related expenditure in China’s AR and VR market reached about $2.13 billion in 2021, and is expected to rise to $13.08 billion in 2026, making it the second-largest market in the world.
Some also warned of future uncertainties for the sector.
Xiang Ligang, an independent tech analyst, told the Global Times that though the expansion of the 5G ecosystem has driven vigorous development of various emerging application scenarios such as the Metaverse, no mature business model has been formed yet with lots of unknowns in the field.