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Heart Corporation
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synbeloved



Joined: 03 Feb 2017
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 8:33 am    Post subject: Heart Corporation Reply with quote

I have recently been hired by Heart Corporation. I have read some stories about them (most that are quite nightmarish), but those are some years ago, and I wonder if they have changed *fingers crossed*. I have some queries, so any kind folks here who have had experience with Heart, please feel free to insert your input.

1) Is a 200,000 - 220,000 yen monthly salary survivable in Japan?

2) How much are your monthly expenses, including health insurance, rent, phone and internet etc. (I know it depends on an individual's lifestyle, but I would wanna know an average)?

3) How are the teachers, school staff, and students like? I kinda have a fear that the students may be rowdy, and even heard stories of teachers being challenged by students, so I am feeling kinda wary.

4) I have requested a posting to an elementary school, as I am more comfortable teaching elementary children. Heart says that they will arrange it, but Glassdoor and other sites say that Heart lies a lot. Is that true in 2016-2017?

5) I heard some people saying that the apartment and the school can be as far as 7km away, and you have to cycle that distance. Is that true?

These are the queries I have for now. Thanks in advance.
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RustyShackleford



Joined: 13 May 2013
Posts: 439

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Had a buddy who worked for Heart in Utsunomiya.

He said that it was a perfectly mediocre position that paid the bills. He lived a pretty no-frills lifestyle though.

Your students will range from superb to awful. It just depends where you wind up and what school you wind up at. Staff will be likewise. On JET, I worked at wonderful schools with wonderful teachers; mediocre schools with awful teachers and awful schools with superb teachers all the same. You'll be an ALT anyway, so you have the magic of opting-in and out of your designated role as "teacher" as you please.

I would never believe what ANY company ANYWHERE says until I see them do it.

Your apartment may be right next door or a train ride away. There is no telling. On JET I had five schools I worked at. One was a 30 minute ride away. Another was virtually around the corner.

Why am I bringing up JET? Because it's effectively the same job. Do what you're told until you know what you're doing. When you know what you're doing, feel free to offer to do more. Make connections. Don't try to make ALTing into a career, but do observe and learn what works to incorporate into your own teaching down the road should you decide to become a TEFL lifer.
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Rooster.



Joined: 13 Mar 2012
Posts: 246

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While I have not and don't know anyone personally who has worked for Heart, everything I have heard points to them being one of, if not the worst, dispatch companies to work for.

Teachers and staff will vary from school to school so that wont matter where you work.

Have they told you where you will be placed?
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synbeloved



Joined: 03 Feb 2017
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 11:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Rusty for the info. So I guess it's all down to luck where I'd be place, and the attitude of the teachers and students there.

No, rooster, I have not been told where I'd be placed yet. All I know it's somewhere in the Kanto region, but that's very huge.

With the pay they offered and the monthly payments I'd be doing, I am really unsure if I would even be making any money, and even worse, if I need to fork out my savings just to get by.
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twowheel



Joined: 03 Jul 2015
Posts: 543
Location: Beijing

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 1:31 am    Post subject: Re: Heart Corporation Reply with quote

synbeloved wrote:
1) Is a 200,000 - 220,000 yen monthly salary survivable in Japan?


Exclamation

twowheel
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steki47



Joined: 20 Apr 2008
Posts: 1026
Location: BFE Inaka

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:35 am    Post subject: Re: Heart Corporation Reply with quote

twowheel wrote:
synbeloved wrote:
1) Is a 200,000 - 220,000 yen monthly salary survivable in Japan?


Exclamation

twowheel


That would be a rough life. Yes, you can survive. Do you have student loans back home? Do you want a social life? This will be difficult on that salary.

I did a 9-month contract on 230K and earned just under 2MY that year. I also had a PT job and a cheap apartment. Still sucked.
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synbeloved



Joined: 03 Feb 2017
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2017 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't have any student loans back home, so that's one less headache for me. One more question. How tough is it looking for a part time job in Japan if my knowledge of the Japanese language is limited? What jobs are open to me? I have plans to learn Japanese over at Japan, though.
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taikibansei



Joined: 14 Sep 2004
Posts: 726
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 12:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What's your background? Any special experience (e.g., strong business background) or qualifications?

That said, I'm guessing Heart will put you in a relatively rural setting, limiting your p/t options to, maybe, private tutoring. Others here have much more experience with this and can speak more authoritatively, but from my understanding, it takes some time to build up a steady core of private students. In other words, you probably need to be prepared to live off just that salary for at least the first six months, if not more. Doable in a rural area, but not much fun!
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Sudz



Joined: 09 Aug 2004
Posts: 431

PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 2:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

At the most, use them to get a visa, and to grind out a year of experience. While working there, actively start seeking out better options for your second year.

Don't make the mistake of staying with a mediocre company for longer than they're worth. Use them to get the visa - as they're also using you - and then find something better.
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mitsui



Joined: 10 Jun 2007
Posts: 1471
Location: Kawasaki

PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They are in Tokyo too. I saw the ad in Yotsuya today.
220,000 per month goes farther up in Tochigi than it does in Tokyo.
But still, you might have to work another job to make money.
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synbeloved



Joined: 03 Feb 2017
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2017 3:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a Bachelor's degree in English Language and Literature. And yeah, I would need to find a second job in order to save up while working there.

Yes, I would most probably find another job after Heart. Hopefully the pay and prospect would be better.
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taikibansei



Joined: 14 Sep 2004
Posts: 726
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2017 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In asking about any special experience or qualifications, I was trying to see if you qualified for part-time positions in a niche market--say, evening business classes. Having a BA is nice, but since just about everyone else around you will also have at least a BA, it won't particularly help you get a part-time job.

Basically, you will need to rely on networking after you get here...and luck. Depending on the latter, it might take quite some time for you to find p/t work. Are you really okay with that?

If placed somewhere like Tokyo (!), I personally would be very hesitant to take this job. Is it really your only option? (E.g., have you tried applying to the JET Program?) Why do you want to come to Japan?
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TokyoLiz



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 1490
Location: Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2017 1:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
1) Is a 200,000 - 220,000 yen monthly salary survivable in Japan?


Is that 12 months of salary?

As others have mentioned, apply to JET if you haven't already. JET ALTs receive support at the national and municipal level, a salary that allows you disposable income, chances to network, etc.
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taikibansei



Joined: 14 Sep 2004
Posts: 726
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TokyoLiz wrote:
Quote:
1) Is a 200,000 - 220,000 yen monthly salary survivable in Japan?


Is that 12 months of salary?


I hadn't thought about this! OP, if you're still seriously thinking about coming out to work for Heart, I suggest you clarify the above first. The more disreputable ALT dispatch companies (e.g., Heart) sometimes pay you less (or nothing) when you are on "vacation" for the summer. (As if you'll be able to go anywhere on that salary....)

I was curious about how Heart handled this, so I did a search...and found instead the following recent entries on the General Union home page:

https://www.generalunion.org/Joomla/index.php/other-companies/1461-heart-corporation-can-my-company-tell-me-what-i-must-eat

and this:

https://www.generalunion.org/Joomla/index.php/other-companies/1358-failing-to-think-before-clicking-heart-coporation-leaks-e-mail-address

Laughing

Seriously, avoid these guys.
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TokyoLiz



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 1490
Location: Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2017 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A former dispatch employee stayed with me for a month after she left her job abruptly because she got fed up with the company's labor law violations. The dispatch company was guarantor on her apartment, so when she quit, she lost her home.

That dispatch company paid her ¥250,000/mo but nothing in August and and a reduced salary in March.

Dispatch companies, except for a rare few that hire in country only, find all kinds of ways to screw employees.

But back to Heart - the issues Taikibansei linked to are two of dozens.

Ditto what he says. Avoid Heart like the plague.
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