Japan’s Post-COVID Job Environment

Months into the global COVID-19 pandemic, the world has done its best to adjust to a new standard of normality. Many jobs have begun having their workers work remotely, and those industries that can’t have had to take strict precautions to avoid infections.

Japan is no exception. The country has fared better than other developed countries like the United States and Europe, but it is still dealing with a resurgence of cases as the weather turns cold.

The pandemic has also placed a strain on the world’s economy. Japan’s tourism dollars in particular have been hit hard. So what does the market look like for jobs in Japan, for foreigners particularly, and what is it projected to look like moving forward? 

Japan’s Job Environment

The advancement of technology is driving Japan’s job market post-coronavirus, according to The Japan Times. As people continue to work remotely to help slow the spread of the virus, they’re increasingly using new tech to help them do it. 

A government report cited by the Times has urged further investments in information technology, software, and human resources, claiming that there are adequate government resources to support such an investment. 

A report by McKinsey and Company in July 2020 seemed to back this up, saying that automation is key to saving Japanese jobs. The report went on to say that “raising the level of economic activity swiftly along with protecting employment are the most important tasks” when it comes to getting Japan’s economy on track for growth. 

Workers in Japan will continue to see their employers taking precautions like mandating remote work and implementing staggered shifts in an effort to keep new cases down. 

The report also noted that it is essential moving forward to increase the quality of working conditions for women — especially women with families — and restrict working hours so everyone can take a more active role in the household.

Are Companies Hiring in Japan?

The answer to this question appears to be that it depends on what sector you’re looking at.

At the moment, Japan is facing a challenge with its workforce. Companies are looking not just to hire more workers, but also to change how they work to make them more efficient. 

Japan’s economy was hit hard by the pandemic. Tourism and manufacturing were impacted particularly heavily, with companies forced to lay off workers. A number of Japanese businesses cut recruitment around September, according to the Jakarta Post. The cutbacks have worried foreign students, who work in many of the industries affected. 

Changes in the Recruitment Process

It’s not an easy time to look for a new position. Whether you were in the middle of a career change before COVID-19 hit or are looking for new positions now, the recruitment process has changed dramatically. 

But HR and recruiting are always evolving to keep up with the latest market trends, so not every shift has to do with the pandemic. If you’re currently in the market for a new position or expect to be soon, here are some of the most recent recruitment process changes changes in the recruitment process and how you can adapt to new challenges. 

Recruiting by Chatbot

Modern-day job markets have never been more challenging. Due to corporations scaling back, more people reply to a single job posting than ever, making each position more competitive. This also overburdens hiring managers that must narrow down a list of dozens — if not hundreds — of qualified applicants. 

Many recruiters are now leveraging different technology solutions to automate part of this process. As a candidate for a position, you may initially interact with a chatbot that will ask some preliminary interview questions or schedule you for a phone interview. AI tools are also used to screen resumes, making it vital to that you pay particular attention to keyword usage. 

Mastering Social Media

If you aren’t active on social media, you should be for the purposes of career networking. Unless you’re in your 20’s, Snapchat and Instagram aren’t necessary, but LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are helpful. According to The Muse, 94% of recruiters use social media in their recruiting efforts, and 78% have hiredmade a hire through social channels. 

Knowing that employers are likely going to look you up on social media, it’s a good idea to take a close look at your publicly available profiles to ensure they’re professional. For personal accounts where you do more casual socializing, set them to be viewable to friends only.

Consider making a tailored job search profile on a professionally geared social network such as LinkedIn. You may consider including recommendations from previous employers to in order to make it more appealing. Then make sure you are active enough on the platform to engage with employers and respond to messages quickly. 

Understanding Culture Fit

Having a strong company culture is now a priority for both employers and the people that work for them. According to one recent survey, more than half (56%) of employees place more value on culture than salary. 

The challenge for job seekers is to find an organization that best aligns with their values. When discovering an open position that seems to fit your needs in terms of requirements and benefits, be sure to also research the company culture online before committingmaking a commitment. What does the company stand for, and what do others say about it? Take note of any red flags and devise some diplomatic questions to address them in your interview. 

How to Write a CV That Will Guarantee the Right First Impression

Once upon a time, an average curriculum vitae (CV) would get you through the door to an interview. That all changed around 15 years ago when competition for jobs became much fiercer. 

Now, in many cases, applicants are faced with the added difficulty of getting their CV past artificial intelligence (AI) technology. These AI algorithms scan for specific data and determine which candidates recruiters should contact first. 

It’s never been more criticalimportant to ensure you have an up-to-date, powerful CV. Here are our tips for how to write a resume that will ensure your relevance in today’s competitive job market. 

Remove Positions That Are No Longer Relevant

If you list roles on your CV that are from 10 years ago, or they’re far more entry-level than you are now, take them off. 

However, if you’ve worked in one position at a company for the last 20 years, your CV may look sparse without any listed work before then. In that scenario, summarize the previous roles by stating only the job title, employer, and time you worked there. 

Above all, feel free to remove roles that say nothing about the kind of professional you are today. 

Showcase Your Skills and Achievements

Don’t be afraid to highlight the skills that will impress an employer or recruiter in your industry. Have you recently taken a class or started using a new management style with your employees? Your CV should reflect your soft skills—those that help you fit in a workplace—and technical skills required for the job itself. 

Focus on a few criticalkey skills and mention them repeatedly across several roles. From this, AI should be able to work out roughly how long you’ve demonstrated that skill. 

Now that many employers have adopted remote working practices, it’s worth mentioning any collaboration tools you’re adept in, such as Asana or Google Docs. On the other hand, basic skills like Microsoft Office are assumed for most office roles and can be taken off your CV for good. 

People often downplay their achievements on their CV and make too much of their duties. A prospective employer is likely to have a good idea of what you were doing day- to -day. Instead, what will you say about your performance to convince them you’ll make a positive impact on their team? 

Update Your CV’s Design

The design, formatting, and readability of your CV are vital. Here are a few pointers: 

  • Your CV must cover only a page or two at most. 
  • Unusual fonts can confuse AI technology. Use a standard font like Calibri, Arial, or Georgia, with between 10- and 12-point type. 
  • Ensure there’s plenty of white space. If words are crammed in, the person recruiting will lose interest fast. 
  • Make sure formatting is consistent throughout—that includes spacing, headers, and font type and size. 
  • Replace long paragraphs with bullet points—no longer than three lines each. 
  • Change all written numbers to numerals, and all measurement words (like “percent”) into symbols (%). You’ll save space and improve readability. 
  • Don’t waste valuable CV real estate by stating that “References are available upon request.” If your future employer wants references, they’ll ask for them in a later conversation. 
  • Rename your CV file to “First name_Surname_CV” so it will easily be found by an employer sifting through many documents on their PC. 

Get the Sections in the Right Order

Employers spend an average ofonly seven seconds reviewing a CV before moving on to the next one. If you’re curious about how to write a CV that will catch their attention and keep them reading, it starts with the order of your information. 


Begin with a headline that gives the reader an immediate sense of who you are as a professional. Ideally, it needs to be 10 words or fewer. How will you describe yourself to spark their interest? 


Next, write a brief overview that exhibits the best of your skills and experience. A few bullet points or a short paragraph is most appropriate here. 

Work Experience

List your most recent work experience, then move back in chronological order down the page. Employers prefer this chronological format, as they’re more accustomed to reading CVs this way. However, if you strongly feel your latest position doesn’t reflect the experience needed for a new role you’re applying to, you could opt for a functional CV instead. 


Your educational experience will often be sought out later on, or not at all, so it doesn’t need to grab the same attention as other areas of your CV. List your qualifications at the bottom or along the right-hand side. 

Use Active Language

Using active language when updating your resume means two things: 

  1. Write with action verbs like “implemented,” “initiated,” and “engineered” to demonstrate your level of involvement in a task. Do a little research to find strong verbs for specific intentions. 
  2. Avoid passive language to the best of your ability. Instead, use concise language that puts you at the center of the situation. 

Be careful to steer clear of dull language and cliches that don’t say much, like being a “great team player” or having “good communication skills.”

Image by Jopwell from Pexels

Provide Clear Examples to Back Up Your Claims

It means almost nothing to simply claim you have a particular skill or you’ve demonstrated a specifica certain behavior. For example, “I repeatedly demonstrate leadership skills” only momentarily piques interest, with no evidence to back up your assertions. 

Instead, state measurable results for the recruiter or hiring manager to see. Our example from above transforms into, “During a project to assess the department’s financial sustainability, I coordinated a team of four colleagues to measure, compile, and present our findings to the board.”

Appeal to AI

Here are some more tips on how to write a CV that caters to the AI algorithm: 

  • Write with acronyms only if they’re universally recognizable. If you’re not sure, stick to the full terms. Even if a hiring manager understands an industry-specific acronym, AI may not. 
  • Make sure your CV is tailored to every job you apply for, and be sure all text is relevant. 
  • Avoid using company-specific job titles that might not be understood by AI looking for certain keywords. 
  • Take a look at job descriptions for your specific area of expertise and note the most common keywords. Then check through the skills section of your CV to make sure they are all featured in there. 

Every single word of your CV matters. When you implement the tips we’ve given here, you’ll have a CV fit to help you find the professional future you deserve.