More Japanese companies recruiting top-level Chinese graduates
More Japanese companies are currently eyeing to recruit top-level Chinese graduates, who they deemed are more ambitious than Japanese students, as they embark on expansions in the China market, and operations in Asia and around the World.
Recruitment fairs were held in Beijing & Shanghai in early November - hosted by major Japanese job placement agency Recruit Co., for Japanese employers and fresh graduates of top Chinese universities. Some 10,000 China students had applied online, and 1,000 of them who passed an aptitude test were given the chance to have face-to-face interviews with Japanese corporations. A representative from a major Japanese apparel company cited “"Rather than 'soshoku-kei' (passive) Japanese university students, we want to hire top-level Chinese students."
At the Beijing fair, held on Nov. 6, several large companies - including Daikin Industries, Kagome Co., Toyota Tsusho Corp. and Mizuho Financial Group, Inc. - interviewed students, many of whom the potential employers found were "hungrier for new challenges than Japanese college students." A senior official of Konica Minolta Holdings, Inc. said "We hope our new employees will help us to tap the Chinese market, and that they will become executives at our headquarters in the future, supporting our global enterprises."
According to the Ministry of Justice, the number of overseas students studying in Japan and hired at Japanese companies has increased since the mid-2000s, out of which Chinese students accounted for about 70 per cent. In the past few years, more companies have even begun recruiting students directly from universities in China. Sony - the Japanese multinational electronics giant, is the current leader among Japanese companies in the hiring of Chinese graduates. According to source, in 2003 the company gave tests designed to pick out top talent from graduate students at leading Chinese universities, hoping the recruits would help the company "develop products that will be accepted by consumers in China, with its high expectations for growth as a market." That year Sony hired over 50 Chinese graduates. Since then, the company has continued to hire from 10 to 30 Chinese university graduates each year.
"The number of Japanese science graduates is decreasing, and their quality is dropping. But students from famous universities in China, picked out as the best from around the various provinces, study for 10 hours a day. When they enter the company, the difference in their level of ability and that of the Japanese recruits is obvious," says Kenichiro Nakata, one of the executives in charge of personnel at Sony in 2003 and currently manager of his own recruiting firm called Innovations. Chinese graduates are enjoying increased attention from Japanese companies, while Japanese graduates face a job market said to be even tougher than during the period from the latter half of the 1990s to the beginning of the 2000s. The trend may indicate a Japanese economy becoming more reliant on its Asian neighbor. According to Recruit officials, a total of 60 to 70 students received informal employment offers at the fairs held in Beijing and Shanghai.