TOKYO >> This year’s 10-day Golden Week holiday presented an opportunity for workers to try their hand at side jobs.
More companies this year allowed their employees to take on secondary employment, as businesses faced larger staff shortages than usual during the holiday.
In mid-April, a Tokyo staffing agency sought people to install computers at a medical facility during Golden Week. Within a few days, it received enough applications to fill the 90-person job. Two-thirds of the hires were already employed elsewhere.
The accommodation industry in particular faced staffing shortages, especially in regional areas.
Hotel Saginoyu, an inn in Suwa, Nagano Prefecture, was one. Finding it difficult to get all of its full-time staff to work during the holiday period, the inn decided to post positions online with the phrase “People working side jobs are welcome.”
“I think the types of work needed at inns are suitable to side jobs,” said Yoshiro Ito, the inn’s chief operating officer.
In January 2018, the government adopted a policy of supporting second jobs. In a reference guide by the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry, a clause was deleted that prohibited workers from seeking additional employment.
According to Mizuho Research Institute Ltd., about 2.7 million people have second jobs in Japan, accounting for only 4% of the total workforce. But an estimated 22 million people want a side job or are considering taking one in the future.