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How long does it take to change jobs in Japan?

​Job change in Japan on average can take anywhere from 3 to 6 months for middle management positions. While the amount it time it takes to change jobs varies by industry, company, and even position, the below timeline is generally what we see from start to finish as recruitment professionals in Japan. 

How Long Is Job Change Process-01


Take this first week to think about your decision to change jobs and make sure it’s the right one for you. Research your options and figure out what you are passionate about pursuing. Talk to your family about your thoughts and make sure they’re on board with your decisionotherwise it could come as quite a shock if they did not know this was something you were considering. This is also when you should go over your CV and make sure it is up-to-date and best reflects your talents and experiences.


Get in touch with a recruiter and see what options are available for you. This is a good time to start building a relationship with your recruiter. Once they know about your background and goals, they can help you find the job best suited for your personality and skill-set. Partnering with a recruiter allows you to leverage their connections in the industry and their understanding of the market. 


At this point in the process, your recruiter has a good understanding of your goals and objectives, and has hopefully now sent your CV to a potential company (with your permission of course).Begin preparing for your interview and make sure you are an expert on your resume. Once your interview is confirmed, your recruiter can provide you with both general interview preparation assistance, as well as advice specific to your chosen company.


If your interview with your prospective employer goes well, you will likely continue to meet with them and discuss. This can take place anywhere from 2-5 times on average. If you’re working with a recruiter, they will stay in close contact with you throughout this process and give you feedback and advice throughout. Most cases, the interviews are spaced out through a number of weeks, however this does vary case by case, such as this one, where the whole process took only 2 months.

WEEK 12 – 16: OFFER

If your remaining meetings go well, the company will come up with an offer. Make sure to read through your offer letter closely, and make sure it matches all of your specifications.  If you are working with a recruiter, they will make sure the details of the offer letter are in order and negotiate with the company any aspects that do not match your expectations. They can also answer any questions you have about your offer. If your offer looks good, you can then accept your offer.

Once your job offer is in order and you have accepted, this is the time when you will need to resign from your current position. It is best to wait until the offer is signed and both parties are in agreement before resigning in case of unexpected issues with the new offer. Your recruiter can provide you with tips on how to handle your resignation as well. At this time, you can finish up at your current organization, hand over your projects to the replacement employee and tie up loose ends at your company.


Congratulations on your new job! Hopefully you are now beginning your great new career. Start date can be anywhere from weeks to months depending on how much notice you need to give to your employer. While 2 weeks notice is the minimum, one month notice is commonly given. Keep in touch with your recruiter in case you will need support changing jobs again in the future!


  • Job search is not always a quick process, it can take up to 6 months.

  • Make a realistic timeline with goals to achieve by the dates outlined above to keep on track.

  • Don’t get discouraged if the job search process doesn’t go as quickly as you think it should.

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