Japan Today

UNIQLO introduces equal pay system across its stores worldwide

By Andrew Miller

Tadashi Yanai, chairman and director of Fast Retailing and the main force behind the expansion of Japanese clothes retailer UNIQLO, has recently made public his intentions to introduce a worldwide universal wage system for shop managers and high ranking employees.

This would effectively mean that regardless of the country in which a worker is employed, while working for UNIQLO they would receive the same amount of pay. Yanai believes that regardless of a country’s political and social circumstances, an equal amount of work deserves an equal wage.

The universal wage system is something that has already been introduced among UNIQLO’s higher ranked employees. However, this time it is also expected to extend to shop managers. As businesses look more and more to penetrate the international market, the idea of a universal wage system is something that is seen as a natural course of progression.

The introduction of these new policies will mean Japanese and foreign employees will be working under the same conditions and therefore subject to the same systems of evaluation with regard to their performance and attitudes towards work. It is believed that with everyone being on an equal footing, worldwide competition will also heat up. On the other hand, if the new pay system takes root it could mean a decrease in Japan’s comparatively high pay rates.

Source: Asahi Shimbun Digital

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Uniqlo is determined to screw its already-overworked global staff just as it forces its third-world suppliers to screw their below-poverty-wage workers. Deflationary times or no, people need to seriously re-think their support for products from so-called fast-fashion magnates like Yanai, one of the richest men in Japan.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

So now they can earn minimum wage globally?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

HAHA they only say that because they don't have any stores in Australia where the minimum wages is around US$17.00

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

For Uniqlo "high-ranking employees and store managers," it's more about working hours than base pay. The company has an internal minimum standard of 240 hours a month for its upper ranks and store management, most of whom, as salaried rather than hourly employees, are not eligible for overtime pay. I wonder what standard of pay Uniqlo will use in determining a globally acceptable level of compensation?

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How about a fair wage for the people who make the clothes

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yeah just a ploy to bring down the wages of developed countries to the third world average. how can somebody in say US/Japan where the cost of living is higher have the same payrate as say somebody in Thailand/China were the costs are much lower.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Hmm, so Uniqlo Phillipines staff are going to get the same pay as Uniqlo Japan staff? So one side of that equation is going to be happy, the other will be not so happy, or maybe even unhappy. I wonder if the cost of living has even been considered to be a factor here. Daft, if I'm being polite!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

What ? Are they going to pay the Japanese minimum wage of 830 yen per hour ?

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This takes no account of exchange rates, which renders the whole thing meaningless.

Will everyone be paid in yen? Of course not. If you are working in the New York 5th Ave branch, you would be pretty annoyed to see your salary falling by c. 25% in the past year. If salaries are fixed in local currency, which they would basically have to be, then salaries would change by the day.

I am sure that Uniqlo's finance guys can come up with a formula to set an exchange rate to set an equivalent rate (perhaps average exchange rate over the past 5 years). This will definitely benefit employees in lower paid countries and make them the best paid in the sector in the country. The factory workers who actually manufacture the clothes will still not benefit, but perhaps it is a step in the right direction.

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Did you guys read the part where it says it's for executives and store managers ?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

it could mean a decrease in Japans comparatively high pay rates.

Nice to see how Japan's corporates are getting on board with the pro-inflation policies of Abenomics.

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