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Salary Guide 2021


Many of our customers are preparing budgets for 2021 and so I thought it good to share with you our current salary guide. However, going through the document, it seems like ancient history.

"2020 Olympic year!" resounds with excitement and enthusiasm: the GDP was growing, there was a shortage of candidates, and salaries were on the rise. COVID-19 promptly let the wind out of our sails.

The numbers have not changed, though I realized that the market had drastically shifted. I believe that the salaries we have here are still relevant, however, as I state below, they will most likely lower over the coming months.

In the short term, I see 3 things happening.

First, many employees are staying in their current role waiting to see how the market will change-they are battening down hatches and readying to ride the storm. Companies are slashing costs, trimming vendor spending, reducing salaries, and lowering headcount. With such instability in, employees find it better to remain in current positions.

Second, there have been layoffs and unemployment is on the rise. Because of this, many candidates are willing to accept lower salaries than they would have 6 months ago. For this reason, I predict that salaries over the next 6-12 months will start to lower 5%-10%.

In conjunction with layoffs, some companies are using this as a chance to restructure low performers and if the positions are replaced, taking advantage to skill-up the specific positions.

Our survey also has some insights about working from home and flex time, which the pandemic has forced all companies to take steps in one way or another.

Of course, IT related companies are booming and recruiting. Japan, who has traditionally been behind in the e-commerce and digital marketing, has shifted radically over the last six months.

Retailers that were hardest hit during Q2 have started to rebound a bit in Q3. And those with strong online platforms shifted their resources to growing that division.

Transportation was another area that came to a halt in Q2 and is again seeing movement, though with reduced volumes.

In short, things are better, but uncertain. Salaries remain about even, but will probably drop. I wish you and your families stay safe and healthy and hope that the remainder of the year performs better than promised.

Wishing you all the best,

David Sweet, Managing Director

FocusCore Group K.K.

Click here for PDF file ver.

Accounting and Finance

We expect the job market in Japan for accountancy and finance professionals to remain buoyant with qualified and experienced candidates receiving multiple offers. Strong demand is expected this year for FP&A and accounting talent across all industries outside of financial services. Bilingual candidates who hold USCPA, JCPA, Chartered Accountant or Zeirishi qualifications remain highly sought after. Communication skills for business partnering in influencing stakeholders are in strong demand, particularly for FP&A roles. Finance departments in Japan are beginning to internationalize with non Japanese nationals being hired into US, European and Japanese companies especially in FP&A roles where reporting to Asia Pacific or HQ is required.

Candidates can expect to receive ten to twenty percent increases when moving to a new position. We have seen that work life balance considerations like flex-time and work from home options are becoming more and more important to candidates when choosing their next employer.

Job Title


Finance Director

¥16,000,000 - 26,000,000

Finance Controller

¥13,000,000 - 18,000,000

Accounting Manager

¥11,000,000 - 14,000,000

FP&A Manager

¥10,000,000 - 16,000,000

Senior Financial Analyst

¥7,500,000 - 11,000,000

Financial Analyst

¥6,500,000 - 9,000,000

Senior Financial Accountant

¥9,000,000 - 11,000,000

Financial Accountant

¥6,000,000 - 7,000,000

Tax Director

¥16,000,000 - 22,000,000

Tax Manager

¥10,000,000 - 16,000,000

Tax Accountant

¥7,000,000 - 10,000,000

Head of Internal Audit

¥11,500,000 - 18,500,000

Internal Auditor

¥6,000,000 - 10,000,000

Head of Treasury

¥10,000,000 - 17,000,000

Treasury Manager

¥7,000,000 - 10,000,000

Treasury Accountant

¥5,000,000 - 8,000,000

Sales and Marketing

Sales Director

¥17,000,000 - 25,000,000

Sales Manager

¥13,000,000 - 15,000,000

Wholesale Manager

¥9,000,000 - 13,000,000

Chief Marketing Officer

¥18,000,000 - 22,000,000

Marketing Director

¥14,000,000 - 18,000,000

Marketing Manager

¥7,000,000 - 12,000,000

PR Director

¥12,000,000 - 14,000,000

PR Manager

¥6,000,000 - 9,000,000

Brand Manager

¥6,000,000 - 9,000,000

Product Marketing

¥5,000,000 - 8,000,000

Digital Marketing Director

¥10,000,000 - 16,000,000

Digital Marketing Manager

¥6,000,000 - 9,000,000

Head of Ecommerce

¥14,000,000 - 22,000,000

Ecommerce Manager

¥8,000,000 - 14,000,000


We are finding that the demand for HR in the Japan market continues to grow, especially with the need for improving systems and slashing costs.

The biggest trend we see continuing is the need fo Talent Acquisition professionals, especially in large companies to cut cost, who aggressively seek to attract the best talent, while minimizing the overall talent acquisition cost often associated with recruiters, outsourcing, and job boards.

For smaller firms, there is also the continued outsourcing of service within the HR area. Payroll continues to grow within the market, though off-shore solutions continue causing problems to companies because of the lack of local payroll laws.

Finally, companies are demanding their human resource departments offer solutions that retain current employees and streamline outdated processes. For example, training systems, executive coaching, and talent management systems are becoming a greater need for companies to compete and maintain profitability. One of the main questions that top leaders and HR professionals ask is, "How ready are our HR professionals to keep up on the skills that companies demand?"

Job Title


Regional Director HR

¥18,000,000 - 30,000,000

Director HR

¥12,000,000 - 27,000,000

HRIS Director

¥15,000,000 - 18,000,000

HRIS Manager

¥10,000,000 - 16,000,000

HRIS Associate

¥7,000,000 - 9,000,000

Director C&B

¥15,000,000 - 25,000,000

Manager C&B

¥9,000,000 - 14,000,000

Executive C&B

¥6,000,000 - 9,000,000

Senior HR Business Partner

¥10,000,000 - 18,000,000

HR Business Partner

¥11,000,000 - 15,000,000

Assistant HR Business Partner

¥7,000,000 - 10,000,000

Director Talent Acquisition

¥12,00,000 - 26,000,000

Manager Talent Acquisition

¥10,000,000 - 13,000,000

Executive Talent Acquisition

¥7,000,000 - 9,000,000

Director of Mobility

¥12,000,000 - 15,000,000

Manager of Mobility

¥8,000,000 - 10,000,000

Executive of Mobility

¥5,000,000 - 8,000,000

HR Director of Shared Service

¥16,000,000 - 20,000,000

HR Manager of Shared Service

¥8,000,000 - 15,000,000

HR Executive of Shared Service

¥6,000,000 - 8,000,000

Supply Chain, Logistics

This year brings both new challenges and technologies to business working in supply chain.

First, companies will have more options when it comes to warehouse management technology in the form of both WMS solutions and automated robots. However, this means the producers of these two products may see some increase competition from each other.

Next, the capacity crunch may lead to a trucking recession, forcing companies to find more ways to cut costs. One of the ways business might be able to save resources upfront is with cloud-based SCM. The cloud market will continue to grow as more businesses become less fearful.

In addition to cutting costs, the trend this year will be for businesses to find new ways to stay competitive. New technology will likely become popular to help implement distributed inventory, allowing smaller businesses to keep up with Amazon. Lastly, the need for security within the supply chain will likely continue to be addressed into 2020 as AI and IoT grow in ubiquity.

Job Title


Supply / Demand Planner

¥6,000,000 - 9,000,000

Supply / Demand Team Leader

¥8,000,000 - 12,000,000

Head of Supply Chain

¥15,000,000 - 20,000,000

Warehouse Manager

¥7,000,000 - 10,000,000

Warehouse Supervisor

¥4,500,000 - 6,000,000

Logistics Executive

¥4,000,000 - 6,000,000

Logistics Manager

¥7,000,000 - 12,000,000

Head of Logistics

¥10,000,000 - 15,000,000

Project Supply Chain Manager

¥8,000,000 - 14,000,000

Procurement Executive

¥5,000,000 - 7,000,000

Procurement Manager

¥8,000,000 - 13,000,000

Head of Procurement

¥14,000,000 - 18,000,000

SAP Supply Chain Specialist

¥11,000,000 - 16,000,000

SAP Senior Supply Chain Specialist

¥11,000,000 - 16,000,000

Head of SAP Supply Chain

¥16,000,000 - 20,000,000