What do Japanese companies expect from foreign students?

What do Japanese companies expect from foreign students?

Some students may have tried finding jobs in Japan without knowing what exactly the company wants from foreign students. Please note that in this article will be about Japanese firms, not a Japanese branch of a foreign firm, as they are completely different.


First of all, Japanese language skills. Understanding the language is a must. Japanese companies are still very domestic, in terms of market and business partners. Therefore, communication skills in Japanese is a requirement.

Some exchange students claim Japanese is difficult for them. Indeed, it is a difficult language. However, the language that is used within the company cannot be neglected, especially if you have lived in Japan and attended school in the country. There are few ways to improve your Japanese; communicate with Japanese people. This may seem obvious; however, some people stay within their foreigner comfort zone. Working part-time using Japanese will also make you study Japanese. After your language skills have improved, try taking the Japanese Language Proficiency Test, as many companies require at least level 2 proficiency.

Understanding of the Japanese Working Culture

Japanese companies have a distinct working atmosphere; traditional values that may seem like useless burden. However, whether it is good or bad, that is how Japanese companies function. Companies willing to accept foreigners have gradually come to realize that there must be a change, however it will take some time. Therefore, you must be the one understanding the Japanese work culture and accept some irrationality.

This acceptance is also an aspect of Japanese culture you must abide by, which values the harmonious atmosphere. Cultural misunderstanding will cause more difficulty when you work so it is better to familiarize yourself with this distinct culture by interacting with Japanese people at school, internships, or part-time jobs.

Make use of your “New Graduate” status

Unlike other countries, new graduate recruitment is quite popular in Japan. As mentioned above, Japanese companies value harmony and a sense of unity, as it is easier for them to manage the company and wish the employees to adjust to the company policy. In order to do that, all of the new graduates are trained intensively at the same time, starting from basic manners, in order to function well within the company. Thus, companies do not actually expect anything from students. They do not expect students to utilize what you have learned in university or skills acquired throughout life. Therefore, by making use of your new graduate status, you will be able to enter a Japanese company with less difficulty, as companies do not really expect professionality in terms of language and skills yet.


It can be said that instead of expecting companies to cope with foreign students, it is much easier for students to adjust to the Japanese work atmosphere. Moreover, this is exactly what companies want from foreign students.

That job offer can be yours by utilizing all the possible resources.

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