IT Jobs in Tokyo
Japan is the known for its unique culture and customs but most notably is its stamp on the modern world with its innovative technology and valued business culture - especially in the capital which has resulted in a variety of IT jobs in Tokyo.
Japan is home to some of the most established and biggest companies in the world with high levels of success in both electrical product and automobile manufacturing especially. There’s an extremely high chance you’ve owned or used a Japanese product for something in your lifetime whether that’s watching a Panasonic television, playing a Sony Playstation or driving a car manufactured by Nissan due to Japan’s high level of exports to the world.
As of 2015, Japan has the world’s third largest economy and is one of the most innovative countries when it comes to technology and electronic goods. Although recession has taken its toll on the Eastern Asia country in recent times, it still remains a strong economy and is expected to remain the third largest economy by 2022 according to the Centre for Economics and Business Research.
Living in Tokyo
The capital city of Tokyo is a busy, tech inspired hub where business thrives and neon signs dominate. It’s truly a unique place and has been a very popular destination for expatriates who want to not only indulge in the inimitable culture but also want to hone their IT skills in one of the more innovative hotspots in the world.
Based in the Kantō region on the Honshu island of Japan, Tokyo is one of the most populous cities in the world which certainly becomes quite evident if you’ve ever been there or even watched a video of Tokyo is rush hour. Despite the incredibly busy nature of the city, its home to one of the best public transit systems in the world where networks are vast and everything runs on time.
There is a wide range of accommodation in Tokyo with housing that has styles varying from traditional Japanese decor to Western decorated interiors. Guesthouses (also known as gaijin house which means foreigner house) is an inexpensive option for expatriates and usually cost between ¥40,000 and ¥100,000 a month. Japan is also famous for its unconventional forms of lodging with capsule hotels being a very popular trend for businessmen in Tokyo which provides a low budget, box like room which is typically for a single night’s stay only.
Working in Tokyo
The reality is that Japan is still quite an insular country and rarely changes its approach from its traditional methods. Unless a job role requires an English speaker or a specific skill you may have difficulty in securing a job role in Tokyo with favouritism more towards Japanese nationals. If you want any chance of getting a job in IT in Tokyo, or anywhere in Japan for that matter you should be expertly fluent with the Japanese language.
Most expatriates who come to Japan to work can only get a max 5 year visa and if you were to gain a Japanese citizenship you would have to renounce the citizenship of your home country so it is a difficult circumstance for individuals who wish to stay longer.
However, Japan has been recognising the importance of globalisation recently with companies like Toyota and other electronic companies planning to change their business language to English by 2020 due to the majority of business coming from Western countries. There is also the JET Programme which is a government backed initiative that gives English speakers the opportunity to come over to Japan and teach the English language in schools and other institutes.
Whilst not exactly related to IT, there could be an opportunity to teach information technology and share your skills and knowledge to a younger generation but the experience of working in Japan and learning aspects of the Japanese language could potentially improve your chances of getting a job in IT. Japan will also be hosting the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo and 2019 Rugby World Cup nationwide which could mean an influx of IT opportunities to support the ever advancing technology of these popular sports events.
Average Salary Earned in Tokyo
The local currency is Yen and the exchange rate is on average around ¥190 to the British Pound. In terms of salaries, this certainly varies by sector but using a Software Engineer in Tokyo as an example could earn you up to ¥5,500,000 per year.
Japan’s income tax is paid annually by individuals on the national, prefectural and municipal levels. This is also known as resident tax and the amount is calculated based on the total net income. Individuals working in Japan who earn less than ¥1.95 million will have a tax rate of 5% of taxable income which can raise to as much as 40% if earning as much as ¥18 million. Like most countries, taxable income is the total earning minus a basic exemption for various types of deductions including insurance, medical and more.
Finding an IT job in Tokyo
Because Tokyo is a technology hub you are more likely to find a job in IT than any other sector but it can still be a difficult process for non-nationals with language being the biggest barrier.