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College students find job offers withdrawn

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It used to be relatively easy for college students to get jobs in Japan. Often, they would be offered a job up to a year before they graduated. With the massive retirement of baby boomers over the last two years, hopes were high that the employment situation would be good for graduates.

But the global financial crisis has made matters worse. Not only are there fewer job offers, but some companies are canceling offers made to students a year ago.

One student who had been promised a job recalls being told by the company's personnel manager: “Our financial situation has become so difficult that we cannot hire you.” A friend of the student says, “He is still in shock and hasn't been able to start looking for another job yet. Since he cannot concentrate on his dissertation, he may not be able even to graduate.”

Human resource consultant Naoki Fukushima says, “Considering the current economic situation, there are probably a lot of college students whose job offers are being canceled.”

Lawyer Hideo Ogawa adds: “Some companies give students job offers in order to maintain their image of reliability in the market even though they know they may go bust.”

Ogawa says that a job offer to students can be legally recognized as being a concluded employment agreement. He says that unless students are charged with a crime or they have health problems which negatively affect a company's business, companies cannot legally cancel the offer. He claims students can sue the company and request compensation.

Fukushima, however, advises those student to ask their colleges to negotiate with the companies instead. Otherwise the student who sues the company will possibly end up on a “blacklist” after he/she starts working for it. He said those students should request the company to hire them after the economy recovers.

Fukushima also suggests that those students shouldn't graduate without job offers; rather they should remain at college. “Japanese companies still require the status of 'new graduate' as a hiring condition for young people," he says. "If those students start their career as part-time workers, for example, there will be fewer job opportunities for them in the future.”

Parents also play an important role in those students' mental care, says clinical psychotherapist Hiroshi Yahata. “Parents shouldn't say to their children, 'Why did you apply for a job at that company?' Rather, they should help their kids find jobs together to avoid putting unnecessary pressure on them. Parents should be more understanding about their children's situation.”

To conclude, Kagoshima advises students to try companies who actively publish CSR (corporate social responsibility) reports. He says they tend not to cancel their job offers to students. (Translated by Taro Fujimoto)

© Japan Today

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Yeah? Welcome to the real world.

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When the going gets tough, only the tough will survive!

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Fukushima, however, advises those student to ask their colleges to negotiate with the companies instead. Otherwise the student who sues the company will possibly end up on a “blacklist” after he/she starts working for it. He said those students should request the company to hire them after the economy recovers.

Hmmmm - employment rights leglislation, any time you feel like it Japan.

Fukushima also suggests that those students shouldn’t graduate without job offers; rather they should remain at college. “Japanese companies still require the status of ‘new graduate’ as a hiring condition for young people,” he says. “If those students start their career as part-time workers, for example, there will be fewer job opportunities for them in the future.”

i.e. they're single-minded and can't get their minds around the new situation. Great attribute for businesses - not!

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Fukushima also suggests that those students shouldn’t graduate without job offers; rather they should remain at college.

Two thoughts. First, since they haven't really done anything at college anyway, one more year won't hurt. Second, great news for those schools in dire need of students: The Fifth Year Senior! Followed in 2010 with The Sixth Year Senior!

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'Lawyer Hideo Ogawa adds: “Some companies give students job offers in order to maintain their image of reliability in the market even though they know they may go bust.”' Yep. Must be Japan.

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Hmmmm, sounds like Japanese students need some grounding in how the real world works if they are going to be shocked by losing a job before they even start it - and the shock is so bad they cannot even concentrate on what they are doing. Maybe instead of concentrating on University studies, they need to be inducted into the real world workforce while in the equivalent of the US Junior High, and work a multitude of different type of jobs - everywhere from the lowest to the highest, so when they actually enter the University they know what the real world has to offer and how the real world works. Something societal has to change in Japan in order for Japan to move forward into the new Global Economy world of the 21st century.

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REFUND their college tuition money!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They've been RIPPED OFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Fortunately, my students have all found jobs next year, but I have heard from colleagues of offers being withdrawn e.g. by car parts companies. The system for placing graduates in employment is far too rigid, with most companies only recruiting once a year. Students who find their job offers withdrawn at this stage are well and truly stuffed. But the idea of sueing the companies is laughable. As a lawyer, Mr Ogawa should surely know that any lawsuits will likely take umpteen years to resolve and, in the unlikely event that the court doesn't side with the companies, the compensation will be in the Y100000 range.

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Industry blacklists are common here in the US. We've had to reject applicants over them being on a blacklist (i.e. suing their employer, even word of mouth over a dispute). Nothing wrong with them as long as the beef is legitimate.

I'll give one example - someone who didn't do any work was fired, and he sued us. We blacklisted him and he'll never work in the industry again, ever.

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Otherwise the student who sues the company will possibly end up on a “blacklist” after he/she starts working for it.

Then you sue again for wrongful treatment in the workplace.

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"Some companies give students job offers in order to maintain their image of reliability in the market even though they know they may go bust.”

...This is plain silly. Image is everything;everything is image? ...even if you go broke? How can you be a"reliable" company if you go belly up? How does this econocide help anyone?

"legally recognized as being a concluded employment agreement" People get fired all the time after many, many years of faithful work. So, take a deep breath, pick yourself up and get over it... move on. Go back to school and get marketable.

"He claims students can sue the company and request compensation".

Sillier yet. Sue? That's real productive.

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Sue the hell out of them. Get on a black list, you can work there for years, do nothing and leave on time. You can enjoy your life and still get the annual bonus, annual raises, and enjoy all the perks of the company, and do basically nothing. Know several people on black lists. They are very very happy.

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Industry blacklists are common here in the US. We've had to reject applicants over them being on a blacklist (i.e. suing their employer, even word of mouth over a dispute). Nothing wrong with them as long as the beef is legitimate.

At least in Japan there are privacy protection laws which prohibit such kind of blacklists. Someone aggressive enough to sue his employer once will certainly not hesitate to sue again, if he can find out and prove that he is on a blacklist. But this is Japan, so it's all just theoretical options...

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Will this cause a new stabbing spree or suicide wave among the graduates?

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What bugs me is that the companies will prefer hiring new graduates rather that people who have fended for themselves for a year or two through a difficult economy. So if you haven't got a job right after graduating, you're "spoiled material" and your career is ruined. Same if you're 30 or unmarried.

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japanese are a bunch of spoiled babies for the most part, hell back when I was a young`un almost nobody leaving high school to work had jobs, and only few college & uni grads as well, the whole job search thing you did yourself when you finished school, yeah sure there waqs career counceling at all 3 but not worth much.

Again J-babies grow up & find yr own damned job you poor delicate dweebs

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gonemad: The way we do it, I don't see how it's a privacy violation. Each company keeps a list of people they've terminated for blacklist reasons (sexual harassment, theft, violence, not doing their job, suing the company). When we look at hiring someone, we call their former employer (or look them up) and call them. Former employers are definitely entitled to keep records on their employees.

Otherwise it would prevent a company from having legally enforced amnesia, where they must hire someone they just fired 10 minutes ago, because they legally can't use their records that say this guy was hired for assaulting a coworker.

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To add to that, I'm pretty sure when you apply for a job, you sign a waiver that specifically says we'll call for references and former employers in a background check.

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Parents should be more understanding about their children’s situation.”

Hey - wake up. These "children" have finished university - they are already adults. Well, should be. Skip that. Maybe they are still children and some parents give them the milk bottle.

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Parents also play an important role in those students’ mental care, says clinical psychotherapist Hiroshi Yahata. “Parents shouldn’t say to their children, ‘Why did you apply for a job at that company?’

That is the funniest thing I read in a long time! Not like what electric2004 said, but because in Asian culture there is no such thing as soft-image parents!!!

"Why did you apply for a job at that company?" would already be too comforting.

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"Since he cannot concentrate on his dissertation, he may not be able even to graduate.”

Graduate or Undergraduate...?

And you are in a Japanese University... All you have to do is show up and you are assured to graduate...

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"Fukushima also suggests that those students shouldn’t graduate without job offers; rather they should remain at college."

According to Van Wilder, this is an excellent chance to make some money as a party planner....

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To add to that, I'm pretty sure when you apply for a job, you sign a waiver that specifically says we'll call for references and former employers in a background check.

bdiego, under this condition is perfectly ok. Otherwise not, and that was not really clear from your previous posting.

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GW welcome to the 21st century. A good majority of graduates in the US and Europe I knew had a job lined up coming out of college, but I guess we were studying the "useful" majors like math, science, and software. Maybe times have changed but it's workers in the US and Europe that are shockingly lazy by any standard. We have work banks where people literally do crossword puzzles because of union contracts, and firing someone can cost you more in lawsuits than keeping them on the payroll.

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Please just read to the and thik about it. I do not know What kind of Economists do you have in the Companies or in the goverment but, it seems they just know the book and its content and not adapting this to the new world. Reality and facts are: The big investors are scared by they business partners, because their disloyal to each othere and just looking for a buck not for long term. What could happend in Japan and thats a worry of mine. Do not stop working do not fired people, reduce hours only, do not stop producing because it might be hard to restart again, if you are manufacturing in other Countries because is cheaper, those products sell them cheaper, not only out side but within Japan and belive me the Economy will keep going, I have some points to fight back the ignoraance among business and real investors, not opportunist. oh! Change your hiring proceedures you are getting useless people for the job with big checks, I've seen it in Canada, USA, Europe, Japan, their for the buck too, not for growth withing you or the company, Thank you everyone.

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Well I don't know how it works in Japan but the Human Resources departments talk to each other a lot. They have changing code phrases that they use when asked about former employees. "Works well with men." ( He costs us about $700,000 when he made advances and groped a secretary whose father was a big shot lawyer. Once she complained women started coming out of the woodwork.)

One of the smoothest moves I saw was a guy got to stage three in the interview process. He was turned down. He sent in a letter thanking them for their time and how much he appreciated their timely decision. He asked if there were any temp jobs he could fill because he really wanted to work for the company. The HR guy gave him the name of an agency that the company used, he got a temp position and did a good enough job that one of the supervisors recommended him for a full time position that had just opened up.

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A lot of college students all over the world are having such a hard time finding jobs. There is this one website, uvisor.com that matches students with employers or employees to increase networking and to help them find a job. It's worth looking into

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