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Recruit Announces Japan Trend Predictions for 2019

Dec 17, 2018

Recruit Holdings Co., Ltd. has announced trend predictions and keywords for 2019 in eight areas: housing, new graduate recruitment, mid-career recruitment, temporary staffing, part-time jobs, beauty, automobiles, and food and beverage. The announcement marks the tenth year of Recruit releasing its Japan trend predictions and analyses.

Housing: More and more people are enjoying a dual life in the city and the countryside

Traditionally, it was thought that only the wealthy and retirees with lots of free time could afford and enjoy luxurious vacation homes. But, in recent years, business people and families in their 20s and 30s have been able to enjoy dual lifestyles and purchase or rent vacant or shared houses. The number of people who live in the city and country is expected to increase in the coming years.

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There are two reasons why this will be a trend:

  1. Concentration on Tokyo: A renewed desire for suburban living fueled by convenience over spaciousness.

  2. Diversification of homeownership: The rise of a sharing culture, legalization of overnight stays, cheaper local properties, and more available vacant houses have increased the number of low-cost and diverse options beyond just buying a vacation home.

New graduate recruitment: Local small and medium-sized enterprises, and government and financial institutions collaborate to support the establishment of young people with deep roots in their communities

As more individuals and families are moving around the country, Japan is seeing more interest in regional development and community building. Businesses are coming together to foster communities involved in local hiring processes and training programs—providing opportunities where people can people can take root in their careers.

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There are three reasons why this will be a trend:

  1. Shortage of human resources due to population decline.

  2. Population outflow from regional areas to the three major metropolitan areas: Young people leave their regions due to a lack of employment opportunities.

  3. Existing needs: Nearly 60% of university students would like to work in their hometowns if given the chance.

Mid-career recruitment: The head of the workplace is more likely to lead recruiting and match the realities of the post-employment period

Rather than HR tackling the entire hiring process, we predict that the head of the workplace will take the lead in this process, taking on a more involved role in presenting the work style, customs, and working environment to candidates and new hires. We are beginning to see signs of a hiring method that matches the realities of employment.

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There are two reasons why this will be a trend:

  1. Intensifying competition for human resources due to a labor shortage: 49.9% of companies were "unable to acquire" workers.

  2. Urgent need to prevent employee turnover: 21.4% of companies saw an increase in the number of employees who left within six months of joining compared to the past three years.

Temporary staffing: International students gain work experience at companies while they are still in school and develop their careers after graduation

International students who want to learn about Japanese corporate culture and business etiquette while balancing their university studies are beginning to work as temporary employees while still in school. These positions help them acquire the experience necessary for career development.

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There are three reasons why this will be a trend:

  1. Increase in the number of international students: The number of international students in Japan in 2017 exceeded 120,000, a 15% increase compared to 2015.

  2. Trends in international students' employment in Japan: 85% of international students hope to find a job in Japan, but their actual employment rate is 36%.

  3. Staffing shortage: Companies want proficient employees regardless of their nationality and background.

Part-time jobs: More companies are offering learning environments

As Japan’s labor shortage intensifies, companies are devising various ways to recruit and retain employees while also raising wages. Providing learning environments has been known to increase employee retention rates for full-time, part-time, and casual staff, strengthen recruitment strategies, and improve business performance.

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There are two reasons why this will be a trend:

  1. Companies' awareness of retention and human resources issues: 70% of companies are unsatisfied with their retention status.

  2. Worker's purpose: The number of people who work for "personal growth" rather than money is increasing.

Beauty: More people are connecting through beauty salons

There are signs of an increase in the number of "salon friends," or people who casually gather and connect with others through beauty salons that capitalize on the "strength" of gathering people.

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There are three reasons why this will be a trend: 

  1. Intensifying competition in beauty salons: Though the population of Japan is decreasing, the number of beauty salons is increasing.

  2. Importance of non-treatment services: 42% of customers decide to return to beauty salons for reasons other than treatment.

  3. Heightened customer need for interpersonal connection: 63% of customers want to "increase connections with people outside of work and home," and 68% of customers want to "communicate with people who have common interests in a place where people gather.”

Automobiles: Purchasing cars not only for transportation, but also for protection and safety

In Japan, using a car as a source of power and shelter during natural disasters is attracting attention. More will consider lifeline preparedness as one of the criteria for choosing a car.

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There are three reasons why this will be a trend:

  1. Heightened consumer emphasis on vehicle safety and protection: 5.4% of those who purchased a car within the past year emphasized the importance of safety and disaster preparedness.

  2. Lower cost of car parts due to the spread of technology and the expanded production of hybrid and EV vehicles.

  3. Car replacement demand due to the consumption tax hike in 2019 (replacement will also increase circulation in the used car market).

Food and beverage: An increasing need for satisfactory, convenient food

Due to the diversification of lifestyles and societal changes, many restaurants have entered the take-out and delivery market, accelerating the popularity of "portable gourmet."

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There are four reasons why this will be a trend:

  1. Increasing business and labor productivity due to the demanding roles of individuals

  2. Popularity in home-delivery: The market for home-delivered meals surpassed the restaurant sector with 122.4% growth from 2008 to 2017.

  3. Increasing consumer needs: 72.4% of consumers would like to have a take-out/delivery service option when ordering from restaurants.

  4. 2019 consumption tax hike: "Takeaway" will be subject to a reduced tax rate. Restaurant operators will strengthen their entry into the food service industry.

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