In recent years, a remarkable surge of employees from the tech and IT industries has propelled General Union to embrace this booming sector. We’ve witnessed an unprecedented influx of inquiries and consultation requests from tech/IT workers facing global layoffs or struggling with unresponsive HR departments. Many of these workers are concentrated in Greater Tokyo, but they also include remote workers and those in other cities. To better empower these professionals, we recently organized a seminar to help tech/IT workers better understand their rights.
As Japanese government initiatives actively promote growth and investment into startups, we anticipate a continued rise in the number of domestic and international employees joining tech/IT companies or their subsidiaries based in Japan. Consequently, it should come as no surprise that the formation of a new Tech & IT branch was enthusiastically approved at the latest General Union executive committee meeting.
Tech and IT workplaces in Japan could be classified into a few categories, such as:
- Large international companies and their subsidiaries: Google, Amazon, Indeed, Apple, Microsoft, Meta, IBM, etc.
- Large domestic companies/subsidiaries: Rakuten, Softbank, Sony, LINE, Mercari, PayPay, Recruit, GREE, Woven Planet, SmartNews, Mixi, etc.
- Small/medium international branches/subsidiaries: Stripe, Coinbase, Niantic, Shopify, DoorDash, TELUS, Mapbox, etc.
- Small/medium domestic companies/startups: Wantedly, Goodpatch, Moneytree, SmartNews, TableCheck, EventHub, Cookpad, ispace, Voyagin, etc.
While each category exhibits their own patterns of issues (which we’ll explore in upcoming articles), there are overarching issues prevalent throughout the industry. These issues are not uncommon in office settings across Japan and include:
- Violations of labor regulations, such as excessive overtime, unfulfilled paid time off, and illegal contracts.
- Instances of physical, verbal, sexual, or power harassment by managers or coworkers.
- Psychological tactics employed by management/HR to coerce resignations.
If you find yourself facing any of these issues or others in your workplace, it’s time to stand united with your fellow industry professionals! General Union warmly welcomes all workers and is committed to ensuring their rights are protected. By increasing awareness of workers’ rights in Japan, we can effectively address these challenges. Contact us today for a consultation or to join the movement!