re: Working in Japan: Myths, Realities, Compensation, Culture (By A Software Engineer) VIEW POST


This is gold, man. Pure gold. Thanks for writing this. Curious: Ever consider getting a developer job back in the states? I gather that you haven't done software development in the states, but what do you think are the pros/cons of being a non-native (but relatively fluent) developer in Japan versus in your home country?


Thank you, that praise is really validating! :)

So. This could be an entire follow-up article of its own, but in short:

I'm considering moving back to the states in a few years. Not because I think I'd be happier programming there (I really don't mind either way), but because I think the things I can do there better fit my agenda. I would only go back if I had total, comprehensive health care though.

From what it looks like - being a software developer in America seems to be harder. Not because of higher skill requirements, but because the job ads are written by CRAZY PEOPLE.

Entry level positions that want a bachelors in CS and experience. "Junior" dev positions that have 4 years experience required. "Senior" positions that need 10+ years in a language that I read about once in my youth. I feel like I had an easier time getting an interview with Google than I would at some of these companies.

Japanese job ads tend to ask for what they actually need (they still overask sometimes, of course), look at your experience and projects, ask relevant questions, and then go forward based on mutual trust. They have this in America as well, but it's not as prevalent. Having a BS in CompSci isn't necessary for pretty much anything here.

However, America seems to also have more applicants for each job, so from what I gather the degree requirement is to make things easier on HR.

The other big plus is that fluent English/ fluent Japanese hybrids with good programming are SUPER rare, so it's a huge plus.

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