This month's Close UP features the Tokyo Employment Service Center for Foreigners , a public employment agency aiming to help foreign residents to find jobs in Japan and to support local businesses looking for non-Japanese employees. Often referred to as "Hellowork for foreigners," the center is scheduled to move its office from Roppongi to its new location in Nishi-shinjuku this February. For this interview, we spoke with Tadashi Takeyama, the general manager of the center, and Kenji Yamakata, the employment supervisor.
At a reception of the Tokyo Employment Service Center for Foreigners
How do you collaborate with universities to bring applicants to the internship programs?
We send an e-mail magazine to about seven hundred universities and colleges throughout the nation to provide information about the internship programs and career fairs. In addition to the internship programs, the center also offers a job guidance fair for foreign exchange students, also targeting junior students, to help them understand an outline of recruiting process of new college graduates in Japan. The guidance fair is held once or twice monthly here at the center, but we also visit schools on request basis to give the guidance directly to their students. We have found that many student employment offices at universities and colleges have the same concern which is that exchange students don't come to the office to ask questions or seek help. Students who come to our seminars often say they have never visited the student employment office of their school. We always tell them that the school's student employment office is the first and closest place to go. The center can serve them as a better tool for their job search if they come to us after speaking with someone at the student employment office at the college.
What other services does the center offer to support exchange students to find employment?
At an employment discussion session
The center hosts an employment discussion session with current exchange students who have successfully found a job by inviting them as speakers to share their job search experiences with us and other students. It is a small group discussion with about ten participants and takes a free conversation style. We also offer a seminar to teach key manners that students should know when looking for an employment. The seminar is given by the Student Employment General Support Center located in the same Hellowork Shinagawa and targets both Japanese and foreign students. Our other seminars include an interview preparation seminar and a paperwork preparation seminar, both of which are open to foreign exchange students and job seekers.
How about the career fairs you offer where exchange students can meet representatives from companies for an interview?
We hold a series of career fairs in April, June, and October by targeting college senior students. The first one usually takes place in the last week of April. These three fairs are regularly scheduled every year, and each fair brings in about twenty to thirty businesses, mainly including mid to large-size companies. In addition to these large-scale fairs, we occasionally hold smaller job fairs if we find five or so companies who are interested in participating in the fair. We may also conduct the fair with just one or two companies if we find it appropriate.
At a career fair
Can you explain the differences in searching job information at the center and at other Hellowork offices?
While all of the Hellowork offices share the same data of current job openings, the Employment Service Center for Foreigners has a unique system that makes it much easier for foreign job seekers to reach job information for foreigners. For example, our computers allow a keyword search so that they can type in words that would help them find relevant job information they are looking for, such as “Japanese proficiency,” “Chinese,” “global human resource,” etc. To provide a quick reference, we also print out and file all job opening information from companies seeking or welcoming foreign workers. The biggest difference between us and other Hellowork offices is that foreigners can search through job information for foreigners much more efficiently here.
Keyword search is available
|Files provide quick references in print
to job openings for foreigners