According to the 2013 Robert Walters Half-year Market Update, improvement in market confidence and recent volatility in foreign money and equity markets has created more demand for risk functions in Japan.
Sentiment surrounding the Japanese government's proposed economics reforms and the market’s relatively improved corporate confidence has led to increased demand for lending from financial institutions. These conditions resulted in a greater need by financial institutions to strengthen their risk functions and to create new openings in credit risk, counterparty risk and credit analysis. Despite this demand, Japanese bilinguals with experience in these areas were extremely limited in the talent pool. So while salary levels remained steady through the first half of 2013, rises are expected later in the year as competition to hire these professionals intensifies between firms.
During quarters one and two, Robert Walters also witnessed a shift towards companies hiring in-house legal professionals rather than utilising external consultancies. Improvements in the cost-effectiveness of recruiting in-house counsel and a growing reliance on legal advice has shifted hiring towards qualified lawyers, especially at the junior- to mid-levels. Legal firms also aggressively sought experienced bilingual paralegals, but like other skilled professionals in the legal sector, those actively looking to change companies were in short supply.
John McCrohon, Director of Financial Services at Robert Walters Japan said: "We have seen a rise in the number of companies recruiting for risk functions in order to hedge against Japan’s recent market volatility. Despite this demand, the supply of experienced, bilingual legal professionals seeking new opportunities remained very low. Uncertain market conditions have seen an increasing trend for more workers to prioritise career progression and long-term stability over purely remuneration."© Japan Today