Major companies are increasingly hiring experienced employees. According to a research conducted by Nihon Keizai Shinbun, hiring of experienced employees increased by 6.1 percent compared to last year. Companies are deploying these experienced hires to strengthen new lines of business. Sony plans to hire 400 experienced employees, or 14 percent increase from last year, topping the group of manufacturing companies to increase experienced hires. Seven Eleven Japan plans to hire 475 employees.
In a survey of 2081 companies, new recruits for the spring of 2008 decreased 0.2 percent to 126,850 indicating that while companies aggressively recruit on campuses, they are also aggressive in hiring experienced employees to secure necessary talents. (Source: Nihon Keizai Shinbun
According to a research by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, 3,460,000 people, 1.8 percent increase from prior year, switched jobs in 2006, marking the highest number of people changing jobs since 2002 when the research began. Job changes among women increased 2.9 percent pushing the total number upward. The result reflects Japan’s improving economy and companies’ aggressiveness in hiring experienced employees.
The total number of people switching jobs increased for two consecutive years. Unemployment rate decreased from 5.5 percent in June 2002 to 4.0 percent in November 2006 reflecting the improving labor market. (Source: Nikkei Net)
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. the maker of Fairlady Z and Skyline announced on April 23 its course on implementing early retirement programs targeting approximately 12,000 employees in the manufacturing and sales departments over the age of 45. The company aims to reduce its sales force which comprises 70 percent of this number. Nissan, under continuing weak demand, have reduced production at two factories from April. The company, determining dramatic improvement in domestic sales to be difficult, has stepped up to the lay off in eight years since 1999.
Nissan will pay additional severance calculated according to the number of years with the company. Application is accepted for 6 months beginning June. Nikkei Net
Wonder what makes successful people succesful? Good time management. But don't worry, this is a skill that can be acquired with a little discipline.
1. Don't leave your e-mail sitting in your inbox. Only touch e-mails once, then take action as soon as you read it. Move it to your to-do list, print it out, or move it to your calendar.
2. Admit multitasking decreases productivity. Do only one action at a time.
3. Make a list of the day's tasks, and do the most important task for that day first. Organize the list the night before so you know what to expect tomorrow.
4. Check your e-mails on a schedule, not each time that e-mail sign appears on the bottom right corner of your desktop. Relax and remember: people want predictable responses - not instantaneous.
5. Keep Web site addresses organized using bookmark and favorite functions.
6. Recognize your highest-level productivity time and manage your schedule so you do your most important work at during that time.
7. Save keystrokes to save time. How many key strokes does it take you to Google search? Can you reduce it to three? You might save 10 seconds, but over time, that adds up.
8. Make it easy to get started on an overwhelming project by breaking it into manageable bits.
9. Organize your to-do list every day. Some people like writing the list out by hand. Others prefer using software which slices and dices their to-do list into manageeable, relevant chunks.
10. Dare to be slow. Remember that someone who is doing the highest priority task is probably not answering incoming e-mails while they're doing it. Consider what's most important and invest intellect - not speed - to completing the task.
(Source: AM NY, Monday, April 23, 2007. "Time is Money, so manage it" by Karen Salmansohn)
Elderly between ages 55 and 69 are working more according to a report released Monday, April 9, 2007 by the California Budget Program. The proportion of men and women ages 55 to 69 who are working rose by 10.6 percent and 9.2 percent, respectively.
Experts say the change is caused by various social factors, good and bad. Longer lives and better health mean people are physically able to work longer. A diminished retirement system and a sharp rise in baby boomers who feel financially unsecured to retire will continue to work longer.
Some industries, especially healthcare, have very little qualified workers that older employees are welcomed to work longer. American's changing attitude towards employment has encouraged more elderly workers to challenge second careers, new small businesses, or jobs that pay less but more fulfilling.
The California Budget Project is a Sacramento-based think tank that works as an advocate for low- and middle-income residents.
"Over and over again courts have said that there is nothing sinister in so arranging one's affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everybody does so, rich or poor; and all do right, for nobody owes any public duty to pay more than the law demands: taxes are enforced exactions, not voluntary contributions. To demand more in the name of morals is mere cant." [Commissioner v. Newman, 159 f2d 848 (Ca 2, 1947)]
In plain English, Judge Learned Hand is saying that the courts have stated many times that there is nothing wrong with minimizing taxes. Everybody, rich or poor, does it. Nobody owes any public duty to pay more taxes than necessary. We are forced to pay taxes and they are not voluntary contributions. To ask people to pay more taxes than necessary because "it is the right thing to do" is stupid.
As some have already been introduced in WJA, there are many ways to minimize taxes and social insurance premiums. I believe that as long as those arrangements are reasonably supported by law (as long as one doesn't cross the line between legal and illegal), it is ok to take advantage of them. It is the responsibility of tax and social insurance premium professionals to work for their clients' best financial interests and to advise tax and social insurance premium saving plans.
On March 28th, in a case where a wife of a 44 year-old corporate manager who, on his way home, died falling off stairs at a subway station sued the Central Labor Standards Inspection Office for denying Workers’ Accident Compensation benefit claims, the Tokyo District Court ruled in favor of the wife.
The Central Labor Standards Inspection Office defended its decision stating that “a drinking function is not work and the manager had more than enough drinks.” However, the judge ruled that “for men, although a function may involve alcohol, it differs from a plain social gathering in that it is often a place to listen to the opinions of his subordinates and attendance is part of his job. He did not drink excessively, and the court cannot determine that intoxication was the cause of his accident. Rather, rain made the steps slippery.”
According to the ruling, on December of 1999, the corporate manager attended a corporate function which began from around 5 pm at the second floor of his office where he drank three cans of beer and three cups of whiskey in paper cups. He left the office around 10 pm that night and 10 minutes later, he fell off 18 steps at Tsukiji Station on the Hibiya Subway Line and struck his head on the ground. He was carried to a hospital but was announced dead. [NIKKEI NET]
Thinking about working in Japan? Preparing to move overseas almost becomes a full-time job in the final weeks of your departure. Many people quit their jobs weeks before so they can devote their time to preparation. But what about your health insurance? Short-term health insurance plans are a great solution. ↓
Below are links to Certified Social Insurance and Labor Consultants providing services in English. Also below are useful links related to working in Japan and links to women balancing career and personal happiness. WJA realizes and promotes women's increasing value in the labor market.