An information certificate system for rural laborers from northeast Heilongjiang Province is expected to be completed later this year.
The certificates allow potential employers around China and abroad to see at a glance the basic details of the would-be worker.
The province is making a big effort to ensure there are records for each of its more than 9 million rural laborers in the hope work can be found for them elsewhere.
Every certificate includes basic information about the laborer such as family circumstances, special skills, education and training background, work experience and a recommendation for employment from the local government.
Healthy men between the ages of 16 and 60 and women between 16 and 55 will all have their information recorded.
"To record each of the more than 9 million rural laborers is a huge and arduous project, but worthwhile," said Song Chunlei, an official from the rural labour transfer office under the Heilongjiang Provincial Agriculture Commission.
About 8.3 million laborers already had certificates by the end of last year. The rest are expected to be recorded this year.
Each worker, village and higher government organization, usually a township, get a copy of the certificate.
Song said the records can help job-seekers "because employers can know more about the laborers and have more confidence in them by seeing the recommendation."
Heilongjiang Province successfully sent 3.57 million laborers to work across the country and abroad last year.
This number may increase this year with the help of the certificate system, Song predicted.
The province has eight offices in major Chinese cities. They have to help the rural laborers from the province.
The offices send information about labour demands back to the province, contact local job agencies and establish relationships with firms which employ lots of people.
"With the certificates, we can provide guidance for redundant rural laborers according to the information we have and so avoid the blind flow of workers," said Song.
A database containing information on 4.3 million laborers is under construction.
(China Daily February 25, 2005)