Your Guide to Writing a Resume If You’re Looking for a Job in Japan

There's a format you should follow.

If you’re on the job hunt, one challenging step is making your resume appealing to your would-be employer. Depending on what you write on your resume, you may or may not be called for an initial interview. 

In most countries, resume formats can get crazy. But luckily, in Japan, the format is already in a form-type where you only have to fill in the blanks. It is so convenient that you can get this form easily. If you will submit it via email, you can get a downloadable format online, or if you’re required to mail it, you can buy from stationery shops, convenience stores, or from Daiso.

The most common format is called a
JIS format (JIS stands for Japanese Industrial Standards, which is a national standard for industrial products made in Japan). Though the procedure is just as simple as filling the form up, we thought it would still be best for you to learn some basic rules when it comes to submitting the perfect resume.

Nowadays, it is more common to submit a typed resume whether you were asked to send it by mail or email. But for foreigners who were asked to send by mail, we recommend doing the old fashioned way—handwritten. This way, your employer can measure your Japanese writing proficiency. Make sure though that you use a black point pen or a fountain pen, and keep in mind to write neatly. If you make a mistake, it is best to get a fresh form and start over. Check also if you have not misspelled anything.

Here is a sample of a basic Japanese resume.

Date of Application

When writing the date on the application, it depends on when you will give it to them. If you’re bringing it with you on the interview, fill in the date of the interview. If you’re mailing it, it should be the date of when you sent it.

Personal Photo

Your photo must be taken within the last three months. Attach the photo of the right size to the resume. It should fill the entire frame provided.

Date of Birth

In some forms, you may encounter those that will require you to write the Japanese era equivalent to your Western calendar birth year. Those who were born between January 1989 to April 2019 are under the Heisei era, while those who were born between December 1926 to January 1989 are under the Showa period.



Write your complete address, including the seven-digit postal code, your apartment building’s name, and room number.


Write your complete school names without any abbreviations, including faculty/department and major subject.


Write your work experience in chronological order. Write the official company name without abbreviations, and the dates of entry and departure from the company. Part-time jobs should also be included.

Licenses and Certificates

List your licenses and certificates with official names in chronological order. You can also list the ones expected to obtain.  

Skills and Reason for Applying

You can sell yourself here. You can talk about your abilities, your contribution to the company and your activeness. You can also talk about your hobbies and the things you are working on.

Hello Work

 (26 October 2019)

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