Suitability exam for foreigners will test their fitness to the Japanese culture
Friday, July 6, 2018
Language is (not) everything
It is not a secret that Japan has been struggling with a lack of qualified professionals for a long time and the Government is always trying to make a big effort to cut this trend down. Recent politics are oriented at enhancing the attractiveness of the country and easing the access of foreign talent to the land of the Rising Sun in order to reduce the severe shortage of workers - especially in rural areas or fields like manufacturing, construction or care-giving.
Better known as ‘Test of Employment Aptitude for Foreign Nationals’, the exam will be a multiple-choice quiz and will check not only the Japanese language proficiency (like the JLPT) but other aspects directly related to the daily life such as working etiquette and business manners, suitability with the Japanese social values and culture or even the knowledge of garbage and disposal regulations. The results will be issued in a 10-grade scale and they are expected to give the companies in the private sector a better overview of the candidates skills as a whole, so they can hire the ones who are the most adequate individuals to settle in Japan for a long term employment. It is planned that this exam will be complemented with additional tests crafted exclusively for each industry (hospitality, retail and so on).
The organisation in charge of the test will be The Japan Association for the Employment of Foreign Nationals, constituted by experts in the field and corporate representatives, and it is scheduled to be available from September this year. Some companies like Nitori Holdings, Softbank Group or Aiko Holdings already have shown their interest in the potential of this test as an useful tool to evaluate qualified foreign job-seekers.
This new policy follows the path of previous public and private initiatives that aim to smooth the transition of overseas professionals into the Japanese business environment. All this measures will contribute to create a more stable, engaging scenario for foreigners who are willing to relocate to Japan.
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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.