Over 70% of employees in Japanese companies believe men are more likely to have jobs that lead to promotion

Half of female employees aspire to become managers

Over 70% of employees in Japanese companies believe men are more likely to have jobs that lead to promotion

On April 26, specialist professional recruitment firm Robert Walters Japan announced the results of a survey on management conducted among company employees working in Japanese and foreign-affiliated companies in Japan. 

Slightly over half of female employees interested in becoming managers

We asked respondents whether they were interested in a managerial position and 75% of male employees expressed interest, while the percentage among female employees was 54%. The top reason given by both men and women for wanting to become a manager was “a higher salary” (67%), followed by “a rewarding experience” (55%) and “more opportunity to contribute to the organisation” (25%). On the other hand, among respondents who answered that they do not want or cannot hold a managerial position, top reasons included: “increased stress” (32%), “less work-life balance” (29%), and “feeling unsuitable for a managerial role” (23%).

Men are more likely to be given jobs that lead to promotion, according to 70% of employees 

More than 70% of employees working for Japanese companies said that men are more likely to be given jobs that lead to promotion and advancement. When compared to the 49% response among company employees working in foreign-affiliated companies, the results suggest that differences in the nature of work depending on gender are more distinct in Japanese companies. 

50:50 ratio of female to male managers is rare in both Japanese and foreign companies

In terms of the ratio of female managers, 42% of respondents working in Japanese companies answered that the percentage was low and that more should be done to increase the percentage. In stark contrast, only 3% answered that the ratio of female to male managers at their company is 50:50.

Among employees at foreign companies, 53% believe that consideration for managerial positions should be based on abilities and suitability regardless of gender, while 23% responded that the ratio of female managers at their workplace was low and needs to be increased. Only 12% of respondents answered that their company had an equal ratio of female to male managers. 

The most common reasons for the low ratio of female managers among both Japanese and foreign-affiliated companies, were “few female employees to begin with” (30%), “fewer women are willing to be promoted” (29%), and “unconscious bias in organisation and leaders” (28%).

(Survey period: 10-18 March 2022, Target: Company employees registered with Robert Walters Japan and living in Japan n=930)

About Robert Walters Japan:

Established in London, United Kingdom, in 1985, Robert Walters is a specialist recruitment consultancy with operations in 31 countries around the world. Robert Walters Japan established its Tokyo office in 2000 and Osaka office in 2007.  For over 20 years, we've been a driving force in the Japanese bilingual recruitment market, providing high quality candidates for our clients and access to the best jobs. Our consultants are experts in their respective industries and work in teams to provide recruitment consultation services across a wide range of industries and job categories.

Press contact:

PR & Communications, Robert Walters Japan
Phone: 03-4570-1500  E-mail: info@robertwalters.co.jp

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