I thought the top companies paying 30 year old women the most in Japan would be mainly foreign companies, but actually over two thirds of the top 30 companies are Japanese, according to OpenWork – and in sectors that are traditionally male dominated such as IT, finance, pharmaceuticals and automotive. In the past, ambitious Japanese women generally preferred to join foreign companies as the perception was they would be treated more fairly, and remunerated on the same terms as the men, for performance rather than seniority.
The highest paying Japanese company is the misleadingly named Nomura Research Institute, which is affiliated with Nomura Securities, but is actually a management consulting and IT services company. Women there are earning around US$65K at the age of 30, and can expect to earn around US$87K by the time they are 40. None of the other big Japanese ICT companies appear in the Top 30 apart from NTT Data (19) and NTT Docomo (25). Whereas foreign companies Oracle, Salesforce and IBM are all in the top30.
The second highest paying is the advertising and marketing giant Dentsu. I hope this is not related to them continuing to overwork their young female graduate recruits to the point where they take their own lives, as in the past. One Dentsu respondent to the OpenWork survey says “The rank determined at the annual evaluation meeting is reflected in the base salary. Bonuses are basically linked to performance. A few years ago, a new evaluation system was introduced, and some young people have become managers.”
P&G Japan is third, then PwC is fourth and Deloitte fifth, with other foreign professional services companies such as EY (10th) and Accenture (12th) also in the top 30, but no sign of KPMG. Nomura Securities are 7th and other Japanese financial services companies such as MUFJ Trust and Banking, Daiwa Securities and SMBC Nikko Securities are all in the top 30. Also surprisingly to me, pharmaceutical companies Astellas and Eisai are at 8th and 9th. My impression had been that Japanese pharmaceutical companies were very traditional, hierarchical, male dominated organisations, and many Japanese women therefore joined Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson (who are ranked 17th) or GSK in Japan instead.
Similarly, Nissan (at #30 with average pay of US$47K at age 30 rising to $64K by 40) and Toyota also appear in the top 30 – although Honda does not.
The data that is lacking from this ranking, which could possibly explain more, is what the proportion of women in the workforce is for each of the companies – perhaps the high remuneration reflects a very small number of women, who are outstanding enough to succeed in very male dominated sectors. It would also be interesting to see to what extent there is a gender pay gap.
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