Japanese Language

Why JLPT can be a strength in your job search

Yaaay team January 9, 2024 (Updated: January 17, 2024)
Person holding a brush while drawing kanji on paper
Some Yaaay users may have never heard of or taken the Japanese Language Proficiency Test, commonly known as the JLPT. 

Is the Japanese Language Proficiency Test really so important? 
Is it absolutely necessary to get a job offer from a Japanese company? 

This note explains Why JLPT can be a strength in your job search.

Most standard way to assess Japanese level

A person's communication skills cannot be measured only by tests, and some people who are fluent in Japanese actually never took the test.
If companies want to assess a person’s Japanese level, they should look from a multifaceted perspective rather than the results of just one test.

However, even with these facts in mind, we at Yaaay think it’s definitely worth considering taking the exam, especially if you are seeking employment at a Japanese company. As of now, the JLPT is the most standard way for Japanese companies to assess a candidates' Japanese level during application screenings. 
Some hiring managers expect foreign nationals to have taken the JLPT, and might not even consider your application if you do not have any test to prove your level.

The Yaaay Team is working on developing a better way for you to showcase your true language skills, but for now, there are several ways that you can try to prove some of your skills in your profile. Apart from the JLPT level, you can state your own Japanese language level under the Other Skills section. You can also upload a Japanese version of your resume and write a message in Japanese when you apply in Reason for Applying. 

All that being said, you still risk being eliminated during the application screening process because you lack the JLPT to have your level objectively judged, even if your Japanese language skills are very high.

The shift away from the JLPT

Recently, more and more Japanese companies are beginning to realize that the JLPT does not serve as a true representation of the communication skills among individuals.
There are many people with high test scores who are not good at conversation, and vice versa, as the JLPT does not include a conversation test. Therefore, the conversational ability of the candidate cannot be determined without actually interacting with him or her in an interview or Trial Work.

We at Yaaay are also trying to change the mindset of Japanese companies to let go of their reliance on the JLPT, so that Yaaay users with all levels of Japanese can be viewed as strong candidates.

For now, it may be good to consider the JLPT

In order to clearly demonstrate your Japanese language ability to a company, and to objectively understand your own Japanese language skills, at least for now, the JLPT is a test that could benefit you if you want to find a job at a Japanese company.

Meanwhile, we will do our best to create a better way to showcase your Japanese abilities, and make it a standard practice for more and more Japanese companies to evaluate your Japanese language abilities from multiple perspectives and to hire you based on your other skills, regardless of your Japanese language ability.

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