2019 Japan Hiring Trends Overview and 2020 Forecast

Thanks to our partners, Computer Futures had a very fruitful year in 2019 by putting our ethos “Connecting Experts, Transforming Futures into practice. We are happy to have been able to help many companies grow by acquiring top level talent in the market, as well as helping IT professionals looking to advance their career to the next level.

As an IT recruitment specialist, we’ve seen many hiring trends over the past year. We’ll introduce the most in demand positions from the year gone by together with our own analysis on the situations behind the trends.

 

Positions in demand

  • Data Scientists

One of the major trends carried over from previous years to this year was an increasing demand for Data Scientists. This has been seen in almost every sector we specialise in, because many companies see a tremendous potential in big data to advance their business and to enhance sales productivity by better understanding customers’ needs. While the demand is high, the number of professionals with a Data Science background is quite limited.

  • Software developers

As the Japanese start up scene continues to grow exponentially, the demand for developers has skyrocketed.  Skills and experience in new technologies such as IoT, AI and NLP were all areas with high interest. In terms of coding languages, we’ve seen rise of Go while less and less companies require PHP.

  • Sales positions (Big Data and Analytics)

In line with the expanding demand for data science, most data analytics platform companies, both new and existing ones, are growing. As a result, pre-sales positions and enterprise sales position with data science experience are extremely high in demand. In addition, as the number of start-ups in this field increases, we’ve seen more general sales positions open.

  • Customer Success (Especially for Software/Cloud service vendors)

With many new technologies and products developed every day, customer satisfaction is critical to the sustainable growth of companies. Therefore, Customer Success has become a greater focus for many of them.

  • AI Engineers

This is not a brand new trend, but business opportunities around AI technologies are becoming ever more relevant. From enhancing the accuracy and productivity of existing jobs to formulating the perfect customer experience, utilising AI offers huge potential to businesses. In addition to the increasing demand of AI/machine learning specialists, these skills are becoming “desirable to have skills” even when pursuing a career in software development.

  • Digital Transformation (Internal IT positions for non-IT companies)

DX (Digital Transformation) is also one of the huge ongoing trends. While there are companies that outsource the process to consulting firms or other third parties, many companies have started to open up internal positions to drive DX faster, hence improving efficiency while lowering labour cost. This trend is amplified by the Japanese government’s concern of 2025 digital cliff”, where major companies won’t be able to leverage tech innovations because of all the legacy systems that are still core to the business.

  • Security related roles

Investing in cyber security used to be considered as a cost. However, as the increasing number of companies became aware of its importance and potential risk that security problems or attacks may cause to the business, it has become an integral part of the business strategy for many. Due to the very limited talent pool, any technical positions in Cyber Security filed are high in demand but we see an ever increasing demand for offensive security positions such as red team and pen testing. Many non-IT companies opened up security roles this year, and this trend will likely continue.

 

What does 2020 look like?

We’ve introduced top trends in the IT sector this year. We foresee the demand for these positions will continue into 2020. In addition to these, our top focus areas will be as below;

  • Technical positions in consulting firms

Consulting firms opened up in-house engineer positions following the launch of development departments. We expect more demand in this area in 2020.

  • Salesforce positions

Whether the objective is to provide better customer experience or drive DX within the organisation, the demand for Salesforce skill has been increasing. As a registered consulting partner of Salesforce.com, Computer Futures will be engaged in nurturing a community of Salesforce professionals.

  • Cyber Security

While the demand for skilled professionals keeps increasing, there are very few specialists. This is where our expert consultants who specialise in the Cyber Security sector and have built strong relationships within the space can help.

  • Software development

The demand for software developers will likely to stay high for a while. However, most Japanese companies generally only seek for Japanese talent, which may result in causing a bottle neck in growth as talented Japanese developers are thin on the ground. More forward thinking companies have adapted by creating international development teams, and this type of cultural shift might be the key to survive in a highly competitive market.

 

Get in touch with us

Whether you’re a hiring manager looking for IT talent with very specific skillsets, or a skilled professional trying to advance your career, consultants at Computer Futures are able to share the latest insights from each niche market to help you achieve your goal. Feel free to contact us on the form below. You may also follow us on LinkedIn to catch up with the industry trends.

 

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