University of Tokyo

Survey Number 1231
Survey Title Fact-finding Survey on Employment Policy for Foreign Workers, 2017
Depositor Foreign Workers' Affairs Division, Employment Measures for the Dispatched and Fixed-term Workers Department, Employment Security Bureau, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare
Restriction of Use For detailed information, please refer to 'For Data Users' at SSJDA website.

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Educational Purpose Only available for research.
Period of Data Use Permission One year
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Nesstar Not available
Summary The number of foreign human resources with a background in advanced technology and specialized fields working in Japan (hereinafter, “HSPs”) has been increasing in recent years, and as of the end of October 2017, foreign nationals with a status of residence that reflects activity in their specialized/technical field and the number of HSPs have reached 238,000, an increase of about 18% compared to the same month in the previous year. The government is actively promoting the acceptance of HSPs from the perspective of revitalizing Japan's economy and society, and companies are also securing HSPs as an important aspect of their management strategy in response to the increasingly globalized economy and society.

Against this backdrop, this survey was conducted as a fact-finding initiative related to the promotion and retention of HSPs, leading to further success by implementing work style reforms and improving employment management related to the employment situation of highly-skilled foreign human resources and their personnel evaluation and compensation system.
Data Type quantitative research
quantitative research: micro data
Universe HSPs and human resources (HR) Supervisors working at companies in prefectures with the highest proportion of highly-skilled foreign human resources in the five industries of "manufacturing," "information and communication," "wholesale/retail," "education/learning support," and "finance/insurance"
Unit of Observation Individual
Sample Size [HSP Questionnaire Survey]
Number of responses: 1,416, total number of questionnaires distributed: 30,831 (10,277 companies x 3), response rate: 4.6%

[HR Supervisor Questionnaire Survey]
Number of responses: 2,330, total number of questionnaires distributed: 10,277, response rate: 22.7%
Date of Collection September – October 2017
Time Period
Spatial Unit
Sampling Procedure
51–100 1,000
101–300 1,000
301–500 1,000
501–1,000 1,000
1,001 or more 1,000
Total 5,000

<Worker questionnaire survey>
Questionnaires were collected from a total of 3,000 people assigned under the following conditions:
Sample size Final number of responses
Men (regular employees) 2,000 2,062
Women (regular employees) 1,000 1,032

Based on the notification status list summarizing the "employment status of foreigners" (as of the end of October 2016) in the four industries with the most HSPs (manufacturing, information and communications, wholesale/retail, education/learning support, and a fifth industry, finance and insurance), approximately 10,000 listed companies were extracted from the prefectures with the highest number of HSPs. The manufacturing industry was also classified among the top industries with the highest number of HSPs and extracted. As a result, this survey targeted 10,277 companies in the 13 prefectures of Tokyo, Osaka, Aichi, Kanagawa, Fukuoka, Hyogo, Shizuoka, Hokkaido, Saitama, Hiroshima, Nagano, Kyoto, and Chiba.

[HSP Questionnaire Survey]
Three HSP questionnaires were sent to 10,277 businesses to reach the HSPs working at the selected companies surveyed. A total of 30,831 questionnaires were sent.

[HR Supervisor Questionnaire Survey]
One human resources supervisor was extracted from each of the surveyed companies.
Mode of Data Collection [HSP Questionnaire Survey]
Self-administered questionnaire survey (with reply envelope) or Internet survey using questionnaires. Both the questionnaire and the internet survey forms were provided in three languages (Japanese, English, and Chinese); the respondents selected the language that made it the easiest for them to understand and answer. In addition, the Japanese version included furigana lettering.

[HR Supervisor Questionnaire Survey]
Self-administered questionnaire survey using questionnaires (reply by fax).
Investigator Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare Employment Security Bureau Dispatch/Fixed-term Labor Measures Department Foreign Employment Measures Division, surveys were carried out by Chugai Co., Ltd.
Sponsors (Funds)
Related Publications (by the Investigator) Please refer to the abstract in Japanese.
Related Publications (based on Secondary Analysis) List of related publications (based on Secondary Analysis)
Documentation [HSP Questionnaire Survey] [ Questionnaire ] [ Tables ]
[HR Supervisor Questionnaire Survey] [ Questionnaire ] [ Tables ]
Major Survey Items [HSP Questionnaire Survey]
(1) About respondent
- Period of stay in Japan
- Period of work in Japan
- Age
- Gender
- Marital status/presence of children
- Country of origin
- Status of residence
- Experience in Japan, study abroad period
- Last school graduated from

(2) Company/organization where respondent is currently working at
- Industry
- Number of employees

(3) Work status
- Countries considered for employment
- Years of employment
- Experience of changing jobs in Japan, reasons for changing jobs
- Current job and rank at work
- Number of subordinates
- Employment status
- Annual income
- Weekly working hours
- Total number of days of paid leave granted and total number of days taken
- Japanese language ability

(4) Awareness of the current working environment in Japan
- Overall satisfaction with the working environment
- Requests for improvement in the working environment by item/level of satisfaction, areas for improvement (clarification of work content, career advancement, salary increase criteria, etc.)
- Thoughts on what companies should do to create a working environment where foreigners can work in English, etc.

(5) Awareness of the current living environment in Japan
- Overall satisfaction with the living environment
- Desires for improving the living environment

(6) Intention to work in Japan in the future
- Whether the respondent wants to continue working in Japan

[HR Supervisor Questionnaire Survey]
- Whether or not HSPs are employed/number
- (If HSPs are employed) issues with utilization and retention
- (If HSPs are not employed) hiring challenges
- An opportunity that led to adopt HSPs now or that is likely to lead to do so in the future
- Occupation type HSPs are in charge of.
Date of Release 2019/10/15
Topics in CESSDA Click here for details

Topics in SSJDA Employment/Labor
Version 2019/03/05 :
Notes for Users