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Tokyo plan
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 8:18 pm    Post subject: Tokyo plan Reply with quote

Hello,

I have a few questions as I am contemplating flying to Tokyo to look for work.

1) How likely am I to find a job on the ground there in Tokyo between now and April? I guess a day job in a Japanese school would be preferable.

2) I am aware that it takes an organisation up to 8 weeks to get a work visa processed - I have heard of firms getting done in 3 weeks. What is usual?

3) What documents, etc. are needed for the visa?

4) Is there a cut off point by which jobs will become scarce? Is February the main hiring time?

I have BA, CELTA + over 10 hrs experience (primary, secondary, tertiary) in 9 countries.
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Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 9:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Tokyo plan Reply with quote

1) How likely am I to find a job on the ground there in Tokyo between now and April? I guess a day job in a Japanese school would be preferable.
Considering Feb and March are prime periods, I'd say finding a job then would be very likely. Whether you meant actually getting a job is another story. Nobody can guarantee any odds.

2) I am aware that it takes an organisation up to 8 weeks to get a work visa processed - I have heard of firms getting done in 3 weeks. What is usual?
two to 8 weeks.

3) What documents, etc. are needed for the visa?
Look them up. Depends on which work visa you want.
http://www.immi-moj.go.jp/english/tetuduki/kanri/shyorui/01.html

4) Is there a cut off point by which jobs will become scarce? Is February the main hiring time?
See above.

Quote:
I have BA, CELTA + over 10 hrs experience (primary, secondary, tertiary) in 9 countries.
That must be a typo -- yrs, not hrs, right? What is your nationality? Age?
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you, Glenski.

BUT (1) ... I obviously meant getting a job when I used the term 'find', since the two terms are synonymous. I'm not asking for a guarantee because that is not possible in the realms of reality - what I would like is an estimate, which is common, i.e. if you go to Bangkok, you're sure to get a job based on X, Y, Z.

(4) Are there jobs still available in April - few or many?

I'm British and I'm 38 but I look max 35 or even 30.

Yeah typo - ha ha ha
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can someone please explain to me what the job search is like on the ground in Tokyo as opposed to long distance.

There are several corporations I can apply to from here but there is supposedly a lot more going on inside Japan (go figure).

I am after a day job really - ALT or private school.

No Japan experience to speak of but lower intermediate Japanese language skills.
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Pitarou



Joined: 16 Nov 2009
Posts: 1043
Location: Narita, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 12:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JerkyBoy wrote:
Can someone please explain to me what the job search is like on the ground in Tokyo as opposed to long distance.

There are several corporations I can apply to from here but there is supposedly a lot more going on inside Japan (go figure).
Have a look at the job listing websites. Of the jobs that require the applicant to already be in Japan, take note of how many already require a visa. It's a high proportion.

But not 100%. So, the next question is: how likely are you to get one of the jobs that doesn't require a visa. That depends on your CV and interview performance - we can't answer that question for you.

I strongly recommend that you try applying from your home country first. There are a few companies that recruit in the UK, and they're not the worst places you can work. And at least you won't be placed in the dangerous position of being asked to work "while your visa is being processed".
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Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Find vs. get
Just clarifying the difference between the nice situation of seeing many ads from Feb to March vs. being qualified to get hired nowadays in this very flooded market (in case you didn't realize)

That's all.

Quote:
Can someone please explain to me what the job search is like on the ground in Tokyo as opposed to long distance.
Obviously, far more job opportunities here, compared to the few companies that will advertise abroad for interviews abroad (in person or via Skype). This works both ways: employer and you can really see each other, and you get a chance to see the office and staff if you are physically here. You'll have to spend money, though, if you come. Transportation, dry cleaning, housing, food, photocopies, etc.

Quote:
(4) Are there jobs still available in April - few or many?
I am after a day job really - ALT or private school.
What do you mean by "private school"? Private vs. public mainstream school? If so, most of those don't advertise widely or in English. ALT positions are virtually filled by April. They start the application process in December or so. Actual posting takes place a couple of weeks before you start work, because the BOE doesn't yet know where you will be going.

Quote:
I'm British and I'm 38 but I look max 35 or even 30.
Thanks, but this is unnecessary information.

Re: percentage/no. of jobs requiring visa or applicants to be in Japan
See what I wrote on 1/26 here.
http://forum.gaijinpot.com/showthread.php?77125-How-serious-are-the-quot-must-reside-in-Japan-quot-requirements
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pitarou wrote:
Have a look at the job listing websites. Of the jobs that require the applicant to already be in Japan, take note of how many already require a visa. It's a high proportion.

But not 100%. So, the next question is: how likely are you to get one of the jobs that doesn't require a visa. That depends on your CV and interview performance - we can't answer that question for you.


My CV is strong so that does not concern me, although I have had a lot of employers. In one sense, that is good, as I have worked for many excellent schools but I guess it cuts across the Japanese way of doing things, perhaps. I have not worked for a Japanese employer before or in Japan so I suppose I would be starting in Japan with a fresh slate but this lack of Japan experience has already been brought up by one agency. I can speak Japanese to JLPT N4, although my skills are super rusty.

Yes I did notice this of course. However, is there a difference between "MUST CURRENTLY RESIDE IN JAPAN" and being in Japan on a tourist visa - ready, willing, able and available?

I just thought that the jobs advertised on gaijin pot and ohayo sensei, etc. were a fraction of the jobs available and that if you are there in person, it should make it easier to secure employment - is this a false assumption?

Pitarou wrote:
I strongly recommend that you try applying from your home country first. There are a few companies that recruit in the UK, and they're not the worst places you can work. And at least you won't be placed in the dangerous position of being asked to work "while your visa is being processed".


Tried several but not getting anywhere. Westgate rejected me for the third time in 6 years and I can only assume I am only overqualified - this is what I have heard. Someone said to be in the know says they don't like to hire experienced teachers in case they ask too many questions and I have seen people post on these boards stating they were hired with 1 or 2 years' experience.

Is working while your visa is being processed common? I suppose they may want you to start in April regardless of whether the paperwork is ready?
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glenski wrote:
Find vs. get
Just clarifying the difference between the nice situation of seeing many ads from Feb to March vs. being qualified to get hired nowadays in this very flooded market (in case you didn't realize)


What do you mean "being qualified to get hired nowadays"? Surely, a BA, CELTA and over 10 yrs of experience (albeit outside of Japan) should be good for most entry level type jobs, or no?

Just how flooded is the market in Tokyo and its environs? I need a sense of scale ... if you were to ask me about jobs in Bangkok, I would say that you just turn up at the right time of year and you are pretty much guaranteed to get something, provided you have the minimum qualifications.

If you are going to paint a pessimistic picture, please provide me with an accurate assessment/ estimate/ depiction. Thanks.

How does visa sponsorship affect matters?

Glenski wrote:
Obviously, far more job opportunities here, compared to the few companies that will advertise abroad for interviews abroad (in person or via Skype). This works both ways: employer and you can really see each other


I am 38 - is age a factor?

Glenski wrote:
What do you mean by "private school"? Private vs. public mainstream school? If so, most of those don't advertise widely or in English. ALT positions are virtually filled by April. They start the application process in December or so. Actual posting takes place a couple of weeks before you start work, because the BOE doesn't yet know where you will be going.


Also, what proportion/ types of jobs will I find? Have most ALT posts already been filled by now? Can you only work through JET, despatch companies or what? Are there are lot of small privately owned language schools. I would like to know more specifically what it is like over there.
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 2:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tried Interac but there policy is you need a driving licence for provincial jobs and you need high level Japanese skills + residency to get Metropolitan jobs. So they wouldn't employ me.

I have now applied to IEC and Heart (again). We will see.

Shane say they wont need anyone until late May at the earliest.

Is it hard to get a job in Japan? In Thailand it is too easy.

I have taught Waseda students on a summer programme at Sheffield University, in England. Surely they must have a classroom for me somewhere??!
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This answers several of my questions.

http://forums.eslcafe.com/job/viewtopic.php?t=99964

Unscrupulous employers? Really?? In Japan? They seem so nice on TV. I thought it was just Thailand.
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Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 11:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JerkyBoy wrote:
Glenski wrote:
Find vs. get
Just clarifying the difference between the nice situation of seeing many ads from Feb to March vs. being qualified to get hired nowadays in this very flooded market (in case you didn't realize)


What do you mean "being qualified to get hired nowadays"? Surely, a BA, CELTA and over 10 yrs of experience (albeit outside of Japan) should be good for most entry level type jobs, or no?
Academically, yes, you are qualified even without experience. What you have may not even cause an employer to bat an eye, though, depending. They might not see work outside Japan as relevant. Case by case.

But work experience and a degree aren't the only things employers use to judge whether you are qualified. Some give grammar tests. Many ask for demonstration lessons (and experience outside Japan may show how little you know of the way J learners learn). And, a lot of them will go on just your personality and perceived chemistry with staff & students.

Quote:
Just how flooded is the market in Tokyo and its environs? I need a sense of scale ... if you were to ask me about jobs in Bangkok, I would say that you just turn up at the right time of year and you are pretty much guaranteed to get something, provided you have the minimum qualifications.
Figure the typical entry level job will have 20-50 applicants. This is what I've been hearing on the street, and sometimes that figure is much higher, closer to 100.

Quote:
How does visa sponsorship affect matters?
If you need it, you may have to avoid contacting 1/3 of the employers (that from a recent look at OhayoSensei).

Quote:
I am 38 - is age a factor?
IMO, not really. A younger age might look more suitable for the kiddies, as would being female.

Quote:
Also, what proportion/ types of jobs will I find? Have most ALT posts already been filled by now?
Look up the job ads yourself.

Quote:
Can you only work through JET, despatch companies or what? Are there are lot of small privately owned language schools. I would like to know more specifically what it is like over there.
If you want to be an ALT, you have 3 choices.
1. JET program
2. dispatch agency
3. rare direct hire

Yes, there are tons of privately owned language schools, called eikaiwa. Pretty basic research would tell you that.

You're trying IEC and Heart? Ugh. I wouldn't, and you should have already gotten red flags about them.

Quote:
I have taught Waseda students on a summer programme at Sheffield University, in England. Surely they must have a classroom for me somewhere??!
Waseda U? Nope. They won't touch you with just a BA degree.
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ssjup81



Joined: 15 Jun 2009
Posts: 572
Location: Tendo, Yamagata, Japan

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 3:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If it is okay to ask, why only Tokyo? Maybe if you checked out other areas of the country you'll have better luck and opportunities. Seems with your experience, you'd be suited for Eikaiwa work.
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kah5217



Joined: 29 Sep 2012
Posts: 268
Location: Ibaraki

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 5:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JerkyBoy wrote:
I tried Interac but there policy is you need a driving licence for provincial jobs and you need high level Japanese skills + residency to get Metropolitan jobs. So they wouldn't employ me.


Not necessarily. Some of the newbies this year got Yokohama. I'll be in Kasumigaura, which does only have 45,000 people but it's two hours from Tokyo. I'm not a resident and I speak only pre-intermediate. Yes I'll have to drive but they're supplying the car.
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ssjup81 wrote:
If it is okay to ask, why only Tokyo? Maybe if you checked out other areas of the country you'll have better luck and opportunities.


For the same reasons a Japanese would want to live in London.

Other than Tokyo, I am interested in Sendai.

Am I "wrong" somehow?


ssjup81 wrote:
Seems with your experience, you'd be suited for Eikaiwa work.


This sounds like a useful insight. Please elaborate.

I don't see myself working for a low-end chain or teaching kindergarten songs and chants. I've done it but don't want to now. My last job was tutoring Chinese students at a university in England (6000 yen/ hr).

The other thing is I would prefer 8-4/ 9-5 as this frees up the evenings.

I have worked for good language schools in the past - the British Council, IELTS/ 'study abroad' centres.
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JerkyBoy



Joined: 12 Jan 2012
Posts: 449

PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kah5217 wrote:
Not necessarily. Some of the newbies this year got Yokohama. I'll be in Kasumigaura, which does only have 45,000 people but it's two hours from Tokyo. I'm not a resident and I speak only pre-intermediate. Yes I'll have to drive but they're supplying the car.


Kasumigaura? If I am more than one hour out of Tokyo, I will feel hard done by. 30 minutes would be OK.

It's good they supply the car - they could hardly dock it out of your wages Wink I don't have a driving licence so that option is not available to me. I want to be "metro man" in any case.

Yokohama is not so bad - when I planned on coming to Japan 12 years ago (which never happened), I wanted to go there. I was advised by a friend that it was a better option than Tokyo for a newbie.

I think it may have something to do with the Interac recruiter in the UK. She seems to have very fixed ideas and doesn't respond favourably to my requests. I will contact the Japan office directly.
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