BARCELONA — Japan is a unique recruitment market with its own challenges and opportunities.

Kaori Kido, global development manager at international job aggregator Jobcube, shared some insights about the country’s talent-acquisition landscape.

While the Japanese HR market is forecast to grow strongly in the coming years, it will remain one of the smallest among developed nations on a per capita GDP basis.

Why? There are several reasons, according to Kido:

  • Japanese workers stay with a company for an average of 12 years, the highest rate globally. Naturally, that impacts HR turnover and demand for both jobs and vacancies.
  • Candidates are very selective in their applications, only applying for an average of between five and eight vacancies when looking for work. This limits apply rates and engagement.
  • Some 99.7% of local recruitment is accounted for by SMEs. The vast majority of these businesses don’t use sophisticated recruitment tools like ATSs, limiting added-value revenues for job sites.

However, the market is evolving, with the number of people actively seeking jobs reaching a record of around ten million in 2023. This is creating greater opportunities for different business models.

“The market is dominated by traditional job boards, is highly fragmented, and services, such as ATSs, are not widely adopted. This is why aggregators can be particularly important in Japan to provide new forms of job search,” Kido told the audience at RecBuzz.

Jobcube is owned by Kakuku.com, Inc., the leading price-comparison website in Japan. Its name translates as “Price.com.” Listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange with a market cap of $2.3 billion U.S., Kakaku.com also owns Kyujin Box (求人ボックス), a recruitment aggregator for the Japanese market, and a number of internet services, including shopping, dining, real estate, travel and movies.

Kido sees opportunity the in the long lifespan of Japanese workers, who desire to work a larger proportion of their life than in most countries (she showed an infographic).

Another possible area for recruitment advertising growth is in the country’s rural regions, which Kido said were only marginally served by job boards at the moment. Kyujin Box sees big expansion opportunities in this area through regional partnerships, particularly with community-based recruiters and small agencies.

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