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Japan Employment Guide

Your quick guide on talent and labor compliance norms in Japan




Japanese Yen (JPY)



Payroll Frequency


GDP per Capita


Employer Tax


Talent Overview

Known as the “Land of the Rising Sun”, Japan’s distinction from the rest of the world is not only its strategic geographical location but also due to its rich cultural virtues. Japanese people are known to be polite, organized, and have a good work ethic. In turn, the country has many merits to its name and is considered one of the most developed countries in the world.

Japan’s economy is ranked as the third-largest in the world by nominal GDP and fourth by Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) GDP. The country is also one of the world’s leading investors, having more than $220 billion in FDI (foreign direct investments) outflows each year.

Major economic hubs:

Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto

Skills in demand:

IT engineer, Cloud Computing Engineer, IoT Engineer, Country Manager.

Map 17

Local Universities

The top local universities in Japan are as follows:

Uni1 27

The University of Tokyo


Local: 1

World: 100

Uni2 26

Kyoto University


Local: 2

World: 147

Uni3 27

Keio University


Local: 3

World: 256

Uni4 26

Osaka University


Local: 4

World: 347

Uni5 25

Hokkaido University


Local: 5

World: 348

Salary Data

Below listed are the average salaries for some common jobs in Japan.

Job Title Average Monthly Salary (in JPY) Average Monthly Salary (in USD)
Financial Manager 1,050,000 7,423
General Manager 931,000 6,581
Business Development Manager 834,000 5,895
Financial Analyst 708,000 5,005
Business Analyst 642,000 4,538
Project Manager 619,000 4,376
Talentsource 56

Talent Sourcing Tips

Top Local Job Boards:

GaijinPot, Daijob, Craigslist, JobsinJapan

Number of LinkedIn users:


Top Recruitment Agencies:

FAIR, Robert Walters, Nippon Shigoto

Employing in Japan

Onboarding Japanese employees can be a real asset to businesses expanding their operations in the country. The first step to realizing this is to be familiarized with the Japanese labor regulations. The following section shall guide you through the onboarding process.

Employee Contract

There is no required language in Japanese employment contracts, provided it is written in a medium that all parties understand. However, most employers use the Japanese language for these documents.

Probation period

Employees in Japan can have 3 to 6 months of probation period.

Public and Provincial Holidays

National Holiday 2024 Date
New Year’s Day January 1
Coming of Age Day January 8 (Second Monday in January)
National Foundation Day February 11 (Observed on February 12)
Emperor’s Birthday February 23
Vernal Equinox Day March 20
Shōwa Day April 29
Constitution Memorial Day May 3
Greenery Day May 4
Children’s Day May 5 (Observed on May 6)
Marine Day July 15 (Third Monday in July)
Mountain Day August 11 (Observed on August 12)
Respect for the Aged Day September 16 (Third Monday in September)
Autumnal Equinox Day September 22 (Observed on September 23)
Sports Day October 14 (Second Monday in October)
Culture Day November 3 (Observed on November 4)
Labor Thanksgiving Day November 23

Employee Leaves

Type of Leave Time Period Mandatory
Annual Leave 10-20 days Yes
Sick Leave 0 days No
Maternity Leave 14 weeks Yes


Payroll 1

Payroll Cycle

Employees in Japan are paid monthly.

Payroll 2

Minimum Wage

Minimum wage in Japan varies with location, ranging from 790 JPY to 1,072 JPY.

Payroll 3

Overtime Pay

The standard working hours in Japan are 8 hours per day and 40 hours per week. Overtime is legal in the country, with a cap of 45 hours per month and 360 hours per year. The overtime pay varies as per the table below:


13th Month Pay

13th month pay is customary in Japan. Most employers offer these incentives for their employees as a winter bonus, usually around December.

Employee Benefits

Japanese employees are entitled to numerous benefits during their employment. Below are some of them:

  • Health & Medical Insurances
  • Holidays & Annual Leave
  • Maternity & Paternity Leave
  • Sickness & Special Ability Leave
  • Pensions


Employer Payroll Tax

Category Tax Rate
Health Insurance 5%
Welfare Pension 9.15%
Unemployment Insurance 0.6%
Child Allowance 0.36%
Worker’s Accident Compensation Insurance Varies on the type of business

Employee Payroll Tax

Category Tax Rate
Health Insurance* 5%
Welfare Pension 9.15%
Unemployment Insurance 0.5% (Upto March 2023)
Child Allowance 0.36%

*Note: There is an additional fixed rate of 0.82% for the long term health insurance that is applicable for ages of 40 and 64.

Employee Income Tax

Taxable Income (JPY) Tax Rate Deduction (JPY) Tax on base amount (JPY)
0 – 1,950,000 5% 0 0
1,950,000 – 3,300,000 10% 97,500 97,500
3,300,000 – 6,950,000 20% 427,500 232,500
6,950,000 – 9,000,000 23% 636,000 962,500
9,000,000 – 18,000,000 33% 1,536,000 1,434,000
18,000,000 – 40,000,000 40% 2,796,000 4,404,000
40,000,000 and above 45% 4,796,000 13,204,000


The standard VAT rate in Japan is 10%. However, few goods and services are levied a VAT of 8%.


Offboarding & Termination

Employers terminating their employees must provide a notice of termination informing them of the reasons for the decision. In cases of summary dismissal, an employer may do so without any notice but must pay their employees 30-days worth of wages, known as a “notice allowance.”

A notice period of up to 30 days is generally observed in Japan.

A severance pay is not mandatory in Japan.

Visa and Immigration

According to the Japan Immigration Authority, foreign workers can legally work in the country if they have secured a Japanese work visa. Below are the types of visas in Japan:

  • Regular Japan Work Visa
  • Japan Highly Skilled Professional Visa
  • Japan Working Holiday Visa
Visa 57
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Minimum Wage

Overtime Pay

Time and date of extra work Rate
Overtime Additional 25%
Night-time (22:00 – 05:00) Additional 25%
Weekends and Holidays Additional 35%
Night-time (continuing from overtime) Additional 50%
Holiday (continuing from night-time) Additional 60%

Visa & Immigration