Employees in Japan allowed to take on secondary employment

A survey among 100 leading corporations found that 81 of them have no issue with staff taking up a second job to boost income.
By: | August 11, 2022

The survey was conducted by Asahi Shimbun, which showed that companies are fine with their staff having a second job so long as they notify or seek permission from the company first to avoid any conflict of interest.

The survey, which was done in the form of a questionnaire, found that 31 companies agree in principle that all staff members who submit applications to work outside their offices should be allowed to do so, while the remaining firms allow the practice on a permission basis.

Many employers regard this as the new norm and indicated it is “effective for the growth of both individuals and enterprises”. Side-job systems were officially introduced at many firms after the COVID-19 pandemic triggered widespread upheavals in the way people work and go about their daily lives.

Sompo Japan Insurance, Tokio Marine Holdings and ANA Holdings are among some of the companies which have implemented this policy. Some of the 100 surveyed companies are also encouraging their employees to hold secondary jobs within the enterprises.

READ: Japan pushes for higher take-up of paternity leave

Stationery maker Kokuyo initiated a “20-percent” programme in 2020 under which employees are permitted to devote one-fifth of their shifts to contributing to sections other than those they belong to. Applicants are screened based on 50 or so themes, such as sales promotion skills, product planning and success in finding new business opportunities. One to three individuals are selected for each category.

Similar in-house side-duty systems are also available at Tokio Marine Holdings and Sompo Japan Insurance.