As the global economic downturn hammers Japan, Japanese companies have cut back on their hiring of new graduates. Some have retracted job offers and have come under heavy media criticism for it. However, it is actually those in charge of hiring at some companies who are really angry.
“The current job situation is shifting from a seller's market to a buyer's market, and students are aware of this," said a human resource (HR) worker for a major electric appliance manufacture. “You hear a lot about a few companies which retracted job offers, but in the last hiring season, only half of the 200 students to whom we gave job offers, finally decided to work with us. The rest changed their mind.”
In the past few years, college students have enjoyed the so-called “seller's market” where it was relatively easily for them to get job offers due to the massive retirement of the baby boom generation. The situation, however, has changed and companies are carefully hiring students amid the current economic downturn.
One HR person for a trading company said students these days lack common sense. “Just after we made a job offer to a graduate, he replied to us by email via his mobile phone, saying, ' I didn't know I would have to work abroad for a few years at your company. I'm actually not good at English. So I'll have to decline your job offer.' His email message ended with an emoticon showing a character bowing."
Another HR person for an apparel company said some students are arrogant during job interviews. “During an interview, a female student asked the interviewers: 'Is your company really a fun place to work at? Tell me what staff do for fun.'”
Meanwhile, a worker for the HR department at a food company complained: “A male student arrogantly said to us, 'How can you understand what I'm really like after a 15-minute interview?'”
Why do some students behave like that? HR consultant Takanori Fujikawa said students don't take communication seriously due to the Internet. “Since 2000, the Internet has become the standard communication tool for students and companies. The situation, however, has made students take the way they communicate with companies less seriously. In the past two years, the number of students who declined job offer has increased by 20%.” (Translated by Taro Fujimoto)© Japan Today