Bankruptcy rate due to the workers shortage rises for the third consecutive year
Wednesday, July 11, 2018
70 cases of business bankruptcy recorded are connected to the lack of manpower during the first half of 2018.
The shortage of workers in the Japanese business market is turning from problematic to acute. Companies nationwide are struggling with the lack of manpower and ask for solutions. According to a survey conducted by Teijin Data Bank among 10,000 companies, 49,2% of them are in need of full-time employees - an increase of 5,5% from the same survey last year. The deficit on manpower is the highest since the survey has been released for the first time in January 2013 and this shortage was the deciding factor that leaded 70 companies to declare bankruptcy during the first 6 months of the current year.
The situation has become unsustainable for many companies in industries such as construction or manufacturing. The economic recovery resulted in an unprecedented rising on the job positions available (in fact, there are 1.60 jobs available for each applicant, a record-breaking number even for Japan), but it makes difficult to find workers that fill the incessant vacancies and securing human resources has become a priority. Companies find themselves forced to invest more to attract and engage young, talented manpower.
In order to survive, the traditional Japanese employment system has to make deep changes and to adjust the work market to the current needs. Experts point 3 possible solutions to reduce the negative effects of this uprising trend:
- Artificial intelligence and automation: robots can make up for the lack of manpower in some industries and the automation of mechanical tasks is expected to reduce the human labor shortage.
- Ease the access of foreign workers to the Japanese work environment: there are many foreigners aiming to work in Japan and letting them enter the labor market could soothe the crisis. Politics like soften the language requirements or the creation of new visa categories could help to make the country more attractive for talented expats.
- Rejoin of the senior generation into the workforce: Allow the retired to come back to the job environment if they are willing to do so.
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About the Author
Half writer, half reader. Tokyo based and deeply in love with - you can easily find me meandering around Shibuya or Shin-Okubo. Communication and marketing assistant by day, video game localizer by night.