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Winning over top-tier Japanese employees

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A unique feature of the Japanese recruitment landscape is the record low unemployment rate, currently sitting at 2.5%. This has created a very candidate driven market, with a major supply and demand problem.

To put this into perspective, for every one job seeker in Japan there are 1.34 job openings. The most qualified and talented candidates are highly sought after and may receive multiple job offers. It’s a tough market out there!

As a result, organizations can not solely rely on job seekers to fill vacancies but must actively pursue people already in the market who are not actively looking for change. Read on to find out more about winning over top-tier employees.

Build your reputation

External communications are critical in promoting your company to passive candidates. This is particularly important if you are new to the market and not well known by the talent pool. Japanese employees prefer to work for trusted companies that will offer job security and career advancement opportunities.

The market won’t find out about how great you are unless you’re shouting it from the rooftop!
Share the impact you are having in the world and invite potential candidates into the mission of your company with real world examples. Show how satisfied your employees are with testimonials or staff ambassadors sharing their own career highlights. Don’t hold back in communicating all the benefits of working for your company to appeal to top talent.

Ask for referrals

There’s nothing more valuable than bringing in people who your own employees have endorsed. They are more likely to be a good fit for the culture of the company, and more likely to view your organization favorably if they know someone working there.

An added bonus is that this empowers your current employees, who feel heard and confident knowing that their opinions are highly sought after. Plus, they will refer people they want to work with, which can improve collaboration, productivity and workplace satisfaction.

Long-term relationship building

In this market, building trust is paramount. There is less mobility than many other countries, with Japanese candidates reluctant to change jobs without a sense of security. The fear of being labeled a ‘job-hopper’ can cause talent to turn down great opportunities.

Therefore, organizations must invest in a longer term approach of creating a wide network of passive top-tier employees. This can be done by attending industry events or joining local trade organization and then staying in regular contact with the potential candidates.


This is our approach at Morunda. We run industry events, make hundreds of outbound phone calls each week, and have built up the country’s largest database of pharmaceutical candidates. If you need help finding exceptional candidates, book a discovery session and leverage our local knowledge.

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