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It takes 500 outbound calls a week to fill a position

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Five hundred calls per week might sound like a lot. But in a competitive labor market like Japan, this is the kind of effort that is required.

Japan has an incredibly candidate-driven recruitment landscape, with very low unemployment and limited mobility between workplaces. The cultural emphasis around loyalty and long-term commitment can create a barrier for recruiters. There are very few candidates looking for work and top talent will have an abundance of job opportunities.

This difficulty is exacerbated for international pharmaceutical companies who have an extra set of requirements as they seek to hire candidates with bilingual skills, cross-cultural understanding and high-level industry experience. A European biotech company HR director shared that they had met with over 30 candidates for a specific position and had yet to extend an offer after three years.

Heavy lifting required

Taking a traditional approach, posting job openings and waiting for candidates to apply, is not very effective in Japan. The candidates that apply are rarely the “A” candidates. 

An active recruitment process and some ‘heavy lifting’ is the key to success. One position may take hundreds of emails and phone calls. By proactively identifying and reaching out to passive candidates, recruiters can access a broader pool of talent. In a tight labor market like Japan, it can make the difference to the caliber of candidates that you are hiring.

But don’t waste resources

Making hundreds of outbound calls a week only works if you’re calling the right people. Market mapping can provide insights into where the best candidates are located so that your recruiting efforts are targeted effectively and efficiently. For example, LinkedIn is not a useful platform in Japan. Gathering data first allows companies to reduce the time and resources spent on ineffective recruit methods

Phone vs. email?

Phone calls are essential for success in recruitment. The importance of personal, fast, nuanced and in-depth two way discussion can’t be forgotten. It is far easier to build rapport and establish a relationship with a candidate over the phone, compared with email. There is also the ability to quickly resolve misunderstandings or answer questions, allowing you to get ahead of any problems and create a smooth and efficient recruiting process. Phone calls are also quicker, they often take less time than crafting an email and you are likely to get a more immediate response compared to email.

Making 500 calls a week isn’t just a numbers game; it’s about calling the right people and investing time in building relationships. Establishing trust, providing genuine insights into the job market, presenting a compelling opportunity are all required to attract top talent.

At Morunda, we do the heavy lifting for pharmaceutical, medical device and life science companies recruiting in JPAC. We give you access to our exceptional candidate database and actively engage with the talent pool to help you build successful teams and secure world class talent. Book a discovery session today.

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