lifestyle

Japan turns to 'work-sharing' to avoid layoffs

21 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

21 Comments
Login to comment

"At Fujitsu’s computer chip unit, the shifts at the 24-hour-running plants were increased from two shifts of 12 hours each to three 8-hour shifts so each worker had their hours and pay reduced by a third."

How does this save money? You work 1/3 less and get paid 1/3 less, but the plant is still running 24 hours per day so the total wage bill is the same.

"Another obstacle was that wives of male employees complained that they didn’t want their spouses at home"

Such wives should be told to go out and find a job to make up for their husbands lost earnings. Or why not move out, get a job and live by yourself if you can't stand your husband?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Good for the harmony of Japan! Share jobs, share the pay, share time with the family. Now becoming a true country of sharing.

Another obstacle was that wives of male employees complained that they didn’t want their spouses at home

Heaven forbid J-children have a healthy relationship with their father. Is it really that big of an obstacle to be included here? Would the wife rather the husband go out and squander their money at pachinko or engage in an affair at soapland? Or, perish the thought, have a healthy sex life (marriage) together after children. Apparently so...

“It can’t be helped,” he said with a smile and a shrug

Truly exasperating to hear "shoganai" so often. Can't think of anything better (less pathetic sounding) to say? Like, "I tried everything I could and this was the best option for me and everyone else."

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Many Japanese companies maintain the tradition of lifetime employment so work-sharing is a way to avoid firing regular workers. So far, most of the layoffs have involved contract workers, whose use became legal in recent years to skirt the regulations protecting full-time, salaried workers.

So, firing/not renewing contracts of temp. workers, throwing them out of their company apartments (making them unemployed and homeless) doesn't equal layoffs, just because they aren't 'real' employees of the company? Am I missing something here?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Numbers don`t make sense, unless cutting out the over time saves money, or one of the 8 hour shifts does not have any workers. I have not read anything about the bosses work sharing?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I bet the poor suckers are forced to do a full week's work in just three days.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I bet the poor suckers are forced to do a full week's work in just three days.

This is not true for a company near here. They are expected to do three days' work in three days. The whole point being, the company has no need for a weeks' worth of product that they can't sell. But they can sell three days' worth of product.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Work-sharing wins the best plannist award for ways to reduce domestic consumption. Instead of laid-off people motivated to look for a job or be entrepreneurial, you have created a laconic society of penny-pinchers.

Great for the economy. Not.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Socialism: Let's all be poor together.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Shiuu: Poor? Hardly. It's time to know that you ain't gonna get everything.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I wonder if work-sharing hours cuts turns the Japanese work day from 16+ hours into 8 hours a day per person.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

But Nagakura also sees the downturn as an economic opportunity to get ahead. He expects most rivals to go bankrupt in the next year or two before a recovery comes while his company rides out the recession in good shape. “We are going to survive, and we are going to win,” he said.

That`s the attitude pal, keep the hope for your employes, thats leadership.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Nice wives in Japan! The wives would rather have anything I think than having their husbands at home or as Gaijinocchio said actually having a healthy sex life after children. I am afraid that does not exist here. The men sure take the brunt of everything. They often get criticized for going out for "a little bit" but man! Can you blame them? But back to the story. A great idea! Things will turn around as they always do and then at least you still get your full time job back. That is why your mama always told you to put away a bit of money for when the hard times come.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Work sharing is so communist/socialist!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

One reason work sharing isn't too popular in the US is the medical benefits problem. It is very expensive in the US due in a large part to the hefty medical liability insurance premiums due to the unrestrained punitive law suits filed. If you work share the tendency of some companies is to call you part time and provide no medical benefits.

The advantage to work share is you retain skilled employees who know the company system which let them come up to speed real fast when good times come again. I keep thinking of a cartoon I once saw showing a supervisor looking at a line of robots on an assembly line talking to another, "I keep wondering if I paid them a small wage would they buy some of our product?"

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Socialism: Let's all be poor together.

you took the words right out of my mouth

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am shocked to see that some Japan Today readers don't know the definition of socialism or understand cause and effect. Truly shocked. The people in the article who are work-sharing are working for private companies, owned by private investors, not the government. They are doing it because of a breakdown in the international capitalist system, "socialism" has nothing to do with the problem. And the concept of work-sharing has nothing to do with "socialism" either.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

shachou pls share your work to me, and your salary as well. a 50/50 share would be nice.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

3 8-hour shifts is cheaper than 2 12-hour shifts because they don't have to pay overtime. (Yes, factory workers actually do get paid overtime in most cases)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Seriously, can people please stop saying "socialism" all the time? Whenever the word "sharing" pops up, people are quick to point out that it's socialism.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Correct, it's not socialism. Individuals employed in private industry are reducing risk (chance of getting laid off) at the cost of reducing benefits (reduced wages). This is completely in accordance with the principles of capitalism. You don't have to embrace high-risk/high-reward in order to be capitalistic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

um why is this article relevant, anyone seen any Tokyo roadwork done lately. Two people to hold the flags, one to hold the shovel, one to hold the umbrella. Two people to remove the dirt, another 3 people to break up the asphalt, another person to get onigiri, 1 person to supervise and the other to fill in the hole. Nothing like cutting cost.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites