Globalization Partners

Rules of the Road for Hiring in Japan

by Globalization Partners
April 2015
Reading Time: 2 minutes

American companies compelled to invest in Japan have to hire in-country sales people; the business culture does not support the strategy of having someone fly in for a week at a time. However, it can be extremely difficult for US companies to recruit in Japan as Japanese employees more often want the stable pride of working for Japan’s biggest companies and don’t want to risk their reputation on a Silicon Valley startup’s new venture into their market.

Globalization Partners works with great recruiters in Japan who can help you find the right candidate and build a long-lasting and successful work relationship. Once your perfect country manager is ready to come on board, we provide a turnkey employment outsourcing and payroll solution. Here is a summary of the most important Japanese standard benefits:

Public Holidays and Paid Leave

Japan celebrates 15 public holidays, for which employees are given the day off. Additionally, employers are required to grant annual paid leave of at least 10 days upon the completion of six months’ employment. This entitlement increases annually and can add up to 20 days per year. However, this does not apply to an employee who is absent from work due to illness or injury, unless stated otherwise in the employment contract.

Health Care and Pension

Japan has a National Universal Health Care System, which includes four basic types of insurance: health insurance, welfare pension, workers’ compensation, and unemployment insurance. Furthermore, employees receive a government-sponsored pension plan that both employer and employee pay into. An employee receives pension benefits after paying into the system for 25 years.


Japanese employees have a very high level of legal protection. Once hired, the employer’s right to dismiss an employee is severely restricted and must always be for cause. Grounds for termination acceptable in Japan include, but are not limited to, theft, violence, serious insubordination, or serious and on-going poor performance after formal warnings have been given. Moreover, employers must give at least 30 days’ notice of dismissal or provide payment of base salary in lieu of notice.

Contact us for more information on hiring in Japan.

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