Current status and issues concerning income in Japan 3 practical ways to increase your income
In recent years, Japan has experienced a slowdown in salary growth while grappling with the challenges of an escalating cost of living. Let’s delve into the factors behind Japan's sluggish salary growth and explore solutions to elevate income. Japan's average wage rank: According to a survey by the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), Japan's average income ranks 24th among 38 member countries, significantly lower than the global average. Japan's minimum wage growth rate, as indicated in the OECD's "Employment Outlook 2023," lags behind the OECD member countries' average by two-thirds. This trend is largely attributed to long-term economic stagnation due to a declining working-age population and sluggish productivity growth. Limited salary negotiations: Cultural factors play a significant role in the lack of income growth among Japanese workers. According to David Atkinson, the author of "How to Raise Your Salary," one key reason for this stagnation in annual wages is the passive approach among Japanese professionals when it comes to salary negotiations. Unlike in many other countries where negotiating annual salaries is a common practice, this tradition is less prevalent in Japan. Approximately 70% have never attempted to negotiate their annual salary according to a survey conducted by Recruit Works Research Institute, Inc. Nonetheless, it's worth highlighting that in the current Japanese job market, often described as a seller's market, job seekers find themselves in a favorable position for negotiating their salaries.
1. Negotiate salary at your current company: Initiating discussions about your annual salary at your present job is the first step to securing an increase. To navigate these negotiations successfully, follow these preparatory steps: Check salary benchmarks: Before starting negotiations, it's crucial to understand the salary range relevant to your industry, position, and experience level. Prior knowledge of salary ranges will help you set reasonable expectations and present a convincing case. See the latest salary benchmarks in our Salary Guide. Timing is key: The timing of your negotiation is critical. Aim for discussions during prosperous periods for the company or after achieving notable milestones, which will ease the negotiation process. Highlight your achievements: To substantiate your salary request, provide clear evidence of your substantial contributions at work and the skills you bring to the table. Share quantifiable data that underscores your positive impact on the company's success and your prior accomplishments. Be flexible in negotiations: In cases where an immediate raise may not be feasible due to budget constraints, be open to exploring alternative benefits or conditions rather than rigidly sticking to a fixed amount. 2. Change jobs: If achieving the desired salary increase at your current job proves challenging, switching to a new job may be the most effective way to elevate your annual income. In fact, according to a survey conducted by Job Research Institute on the impact of job changes on annual income, 58.2% of respondents answered that their annual income increased after changing jobs. Consider the following steps to successfully increase your earnings: Update your resume: Create a compelling resume that highlights your skills, accomplishments, experience, and the value you can bring to your prospective employer. Thorough research: Delve into the industry and company you aspire to work for, including an in-depth examination of company culture, reputation, and compensation. Consider getting support from a recruitment agency to get the latest information on job openings and receive professional interview preparation. Effective interview preparation: During interviews, clearly communicate how your skills and experience align with the company's requirements. Articulate how you can contribute to the company's growth and success. Additionally, research the salary ranges for your desired position and express your annual salary expectations. Negotiate your salary: When offered a job at your desired company, engage in salary negotiations to ensure you receive an attractive compensation package. If you prefer not to handle this negotiation on your own, consider getting a professional consultant from a recruitment agency to assist you. 3. Start a side hustle: As an alternative to changing jobs, consider augmenting your income through side jobs while honing your skills. In recent years, more companies have relaxed restrictions on side secondary employment. According to the "2023 Survey on Secondary and Concurrent Jobs" conducted by the Job Research Institute, 22.6% of respondents are currently engaged in a side hustle. Additionally, 85.5% express interest in starting a side job in the future, with 70.4% citing income enhancement as their motivation. When pursuing side hustles, focus on developing skills that are in high demand and can pave the way for future career advancements while aligning with your strengths and interests.
To increase your income, taking proactive steps is essential. The strategies presented here can help you not only increase your income but also advance your career. If you have questions about your career or need assistance in finding a job that aligns with your goals, submit your resume or search for the latest jobs.