How much can I earn working in the Japanese cryptocurrency sector?

Those who understand the world of crypto assets and have some kind of experience developing cryptocurrency related platforms can find employment in almost any developed country. Among these countries Japan has one of the most rapidly developing crypto market and the country is in desperate need of cryptocurrency experts. If you’re one of these experts you’ll definitely find this article useful, because it will cast new light upon the Japanese job market and you’ll gain some insight into the world of cryptocurrency related jobs. If you’re not yet an expert be sure to read the whole article and plan your studies accordingly. In a country with as many people as in Japan the IT companies are innumerable and there will be a position for everyone who has excellent IT skills.

Cryptocurrency related jobs in Japan



The term cryptocurrency didn’t even exist when I was a graduate student in Japan and one of the most tempting positions was to be a server side developer in an investment bank, because they paid the highest salaries to their employees. These days the situation is somewhat altered. With the emerging cryptocurrency markets there are more and more positions available for foreigners in Japan who have work experience in these fields.


This is a relatively new topic and not many Japanese universities have cryptocurrency related faculties. I think European universities are adopting the new technologies with a much higher rate and if you’re graduating from a European university with a relevant degree, you are an excellent candidate for the jobs I’m going to introduce you in the following few lines. You should also keep in mind the fact that in order to be able to compete on the Japanese job market, you have to speak the language. Many positions will not require you to speak Japanese and there is a growing number of international teams at some of these companies, but a large portion of the jobs are not even available for those who don’t speak Japanese. If there is no international team at the company, the chances that they post their openings only in Japanese is very high. If you don’t know how to read and write in Japanese you will never find these opportunities, let alone applying for them.


In order to find new openings in the cryptocurrency sector in Japan, open Linkedin and search for jobs by setting the following two conditions: 仮想通貨 in the search field and 東京 in the location field. With this you’ll be searching for cryptocurrency related jobs in Tokyo and this search will give you the list of companies looking for cryptocurrency experts in Japan.


This is how I performed the search using my Linkedin account:


Performing a search on Linkedin in Japanese

Currently there are 218 postings. I can tell this by reading the number in the top-left corner of the page, where it says: 218件の結果.


Alright, let’s start with the first result from 税理士法人ほはば or Hohaba.


Tax advisor position in Japan

If you understand Japanese, you can tell that this opening is for tax advisors. This might not be the best option for non-Japanese applicants, because the job is for those who are currently studying to be a Japanese tax advisor. This means that you have to know all cryptocurrency related regulations in Japan and unless you are currently attending a Japanese university this is a very difficult quest.


They are not only looking for advisers who are proficient in cryptocurrency related fields, but those who understand the new concepts of sharing economies are also welcome. Some clients experience financial hardships during the COVID-19 crisis and they want to know how to save on taxes. The new employees should give these advice. Others are working in sharing economies. These are the business owners who utilize UberEats, YouTube, Airbnb and cryptocurrencies in Japan and they also want to have their tax related questions answered.


Now let’s see the salaries. The amount they published on Linkedin is only for reference. In Tokyo they’d be paying over ¥200.000 or $1910 and in Osaka or Fukuoka the salary is ¥180.000 or $1720, but the new employee’s performance is evaluated every three months and in addition to the bonus they pay out three times every year, they reconsider your salary based on their performance evaluation. This is not more than a harlequinade for those who want to earn real money in Japan, so we'll have to move on...


Let’s scroll down a bit and take a look at the position offered by Coincheck. Coincheck was incorporated in August, 2014 and the company is headquartered in Tokyo. They offer various cryptocurrency related services, including trading, lending and exchanging crypto assets. Since 2015, they have been providing service for mainland Chinese, Taiwanese and Hongkongese clients.


An opening at Coincheck

Coincheck is looking for network engineers to develop their internal corporate networks and to implement new functions in order to be able to respond to the newly emerging trends on the rapidly changing cryptocurrency markets.


The applicant should be able to understand Coincheck’s internal processes and a candidate is expected to provide proposals to improve the efficacy of these pivotal elements.


The division in the Tokyo office that is looking for a new employee uses the following technologies: Juniper, HPE Aruba, PaloAlto, BlueCoat, Fortinet, Cisco and AWS.


In order to apply for this position you are required to have some experience in enterprise network management and if you’ve ever worked with one of the following switch manufacturers, you are welcome: Juniper, Aruba or Cisco. A candidate should be able to set up both wireless and wired networks and to utilize AWS to install, manage and maintain these.


You’d be working in Tokyo from 10 am to 7 pm with a 60 minute break. The so-called “core time or コアタイム in Japanese” is from noon to 3 pm. You’re expected to work with the most devotion during these hours.


The average number of extra hours you’d be working is 10 hours each month and there is a 3 months trial period.


The salary at Coincheck

Now take a look at the salary. The annual pre-tax salary range is between ¥5.000.000 ($47.800) and ¥7.000.000 ($66.940) so the leeway for negotiation is relatively small. The description says that you’d be earning between ¥416.666 ($3.983) and ¥583.333 ($5.577) each month, and I guess this is also a pre-tax amount excluding the amount paid by the company for your extra hours. While $5577 doesn’t seem like a very huge amount, extra hours are usually compensated with a multiplier. So if you were earning $40 each hour during the day, if you’re asked to stay a few more hours, then expect to receive $50 or even $60 for every hour you work extra. This is an advantage in Japan’s miraculous 残業 system.


Finally let’s see the third posting on Linkedin for those who are planning to work and the cryptocurrency sector of Japan!


Michael Page is a recruitment company based in the UK, but nevertheless they post openings on Linkedin very actively. The position they are advertising on the platform was posted 3 weeks ago and they are looking for IT security engineers in Tokyo. Judging by the first line, this is an opportunity to be employed at a Blockchain company and one can hit two birds with one stone by applying to this job, because there is an opportunity to utilize the company’s latest technologies and they also offer exclusive benefits within the Japanese fringe benefit system.


A posting by Michael Page in Japan

They not only provide cryptocurrency exchange services, but they also invest in Blockchain related research and development projects in Japan and with this initiative their final goal is to roll out their Blockchain based products to the international markets.


What do we know about this position?


According to the description, the candidate is expected to monitor AWS services, enterprise networks and various other terminals. Software design and development are also among the requirements. Additionally, you’d be requested to evaluate the risk and effect of newly introduced components. Incident handling and other operational tasks would also be given to you if you undertake this job.


Now let’s see the most important part, the salary. The second half of the description elaborates on the compensation. It says 年収:MAX 700万円, which means that the annual pre-tax salary would not exceed ¥7.000.000 or $66.800. In terms of a monthly salary, this would be ¥583.333 or $5.573. They also have a fixed “core time” from noon to 4 pm and you’d get 10 days of paid leave in the first year. You can take a total of 20 days off in the first year, but I guess this means that you wouldn’t get paid for the remaining 10 days. The company would cover all commuting expenses.


Summary


These were some of the positions I found worthwhile to talk about. You can see that if you want to find employment in Japan in the cryptocurrency sector and you want to experience the Japanese corporate milieu, there are numerous positions waiting for you in Tokyo. The salary that these crypto companies are willing to pay varies greatly based on your skills, the job description and the company’s financial performance. Larger companies with rapidly expanding business activities obviously pay more, but even if we consider the position at Coincheck, the most famous cryptocurrency exchange operator we can say that the upper limit of the salaries in this sector is somewhere near $6000 monthly before taxes. If you want to find out how much of these will be deducted to cover your income and residency tax in Japan, be sure to read my article on income tax in Japan!



Stay tuned for the next post! じゃねー!


Illustration: pexels.com


Content: LB



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