tokyodev forum

Looking For Strategies To Go Back To Japan

I worked as Researcher for 6 years in Japan.
Now, I am a Software Engineer in Europe.
I saw that Japan is still closed for relocation.
Does anyone have suggestions, hints to find a good way to go to Japan?
Moreover, I saw tried some job found in TokyoDev. To say the truth, most of them are quite are at two extrems: some wants you to be a guru in everything, some wants you to be a guru in specific tools.
As engineer, I can witness that nobody can know everyting but the real engineer can adapt quickly to situations, properties which can not be stemmed from an interview.

At the moment, new working visas aren’t being issued, and haven’t been for the last year or so. It’s uncertain when the border will open again, but I wouldn’t be focused on relocating on the short term, as even when it opens again, I suspect there will be a huge backlog of visas to be processed.

With all this uncertainty, companies are more hesitant to make offers to developers living overseas, due to the extra risk involved. Some companies have been hiring people on remote contracts, with the idea that they’ll eventually relocate people to Japan. This can be a good option if you can find an opportunity that matches you well, but it is quite competitive.

Even before the pandemic though, Japanese companies tended to only make offers to overseas developers who were an exceptional match. Brining someone over from abroad involves extra risks and takes a longer time than a local hire, and so it’s not worth going through that hassle unless they’re very confident someone will be a good fit. What’s more, they can afford to be picky, as there’s far more demand to relocate to Japan than there are opportunities available to do so.

Judging the skills of an engineer from only an interview is a hard thing to do, and I agree that some people who can’t fully present their abilities during an interview would turn out to be a great fit if they were given a chance. Unfortunately, as imperfect as they are, it’s the process that companies are using to screen people. If you’re having trouble passing interviews, there are resources out there more generally on how to pass them.

Rather than applying to lots of positions, and hoping for the best, I’d also recommend on focusing on ones where you do seem like you could be an exceptional fit for what they’re looking for. That allows you to invest extra time in to the application itself, and by having something that demonstrates you’re going to be a good match from the beginning, you set the tone right for the interview. If someone thinks you’re going to be a good fit from before the interview, they’re more likely to rate you highly during it.

The other approach you could take is getting a job at a prestigious tech company that operates locally. If you have that you’ve worked at Google on your resume, companies are far more likely to assume you’re a talented engineer.