If you are looking to start a career or change jobs in Japan, you might well keep an eye on its manufacturing industries. Besides being home to many globally leading players, they also account for four of the Top 5 jobs in Japan that recruiting firm Hays expects to be in growing demand in the country’s job market in 2017.
As technologies advance, some sectors have seen jobs fade away, but new roles have been created, too. Due to this recent switch in focus and the alacrity of the technological advancement, Japan’s workforce skills sets are struggling to keep up.
According to a study of labor supply and demand efficiency conducted by Hays for 33 countries, talent mismatch – the gap between the skills that companies are targeting and the skills that people have – in Japan is among the worst in the world.
Japan’s Top 5 Jobs in 2017
But in turn, this mismatch creates substantial opportunity for employers that develop talent, and for candidates who find ways to continually upskill and keep up with current and future skills that will be in short demand in Japan’s manufacturing industries.
1. Bilingual customer support professionals
There is growing excitement surrounding the upcoming Tokyo Olympics 2020, which is expected to bring a substantial boost to the travel and the tourism industries. With the games a mere three years away, demand for bilingual customer service professionals is expected to grow significantly in 2017.
2. Industrial Internet engineers
The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) for the manufacturing industry deals with the connection of industrial machines to the internet in order to analyze big data. As Industrial Internet engineers are required to have expertise in both machinery and data science, a considerable talent mismatch can be expected due to the dramatic shortfall between the number of highly skilled professionals and high demand for positions to be filled.
3. Artificial Intelligence (AI) / Robotics Engineers
In order to drive development in line with their U.S. and European headquarters, multinational companies with bases in Japan are on the lookout for high-level talent in the field of robotics and artificial intelligence. Demand for engineers and researchers is likely to rise dramatically.
4. Driverless technology engineers
As the sector sees increasingly fierce competition over the development of automated driving and related cutting-edge technologies, a bitter war of talent over highly skilled candidates is anticipated in the automotive industry,
5. Data scientists
As companies in a wide array of industries increasingly promote the use of big data, demand is growing for data scientists able to analyze and extract information from the vast swathes of information collected. This requires from candidates a diverse skills set including a strong background in statistics, computer science and business skills. Despite the soaring demand, the talent pool is desperately small – a trend predicted to continue in 2017.