Contract's renewal: 無期期間契約社員or正社員?

Discussion in 'Working in Japan' started by momonoki, Mar 14, 2018.

  1. momonoki

    momonoki Kouhai

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    Hi guys,

    I would like to hear your advice about the renewal of my job’s contract.

    I’m working as contract employee since 1st January of 2017 in an architectural company which mainly dispatch employees to general contractors and design firms.(aka 建築派遣会社).

    When I have been hired last year, the company promised me that after 1 year they would have changed my contract to indefinite period contract employee (無期期間契約社員) or regular employee (正社員). The choice is up to me. Now, as contract employee I don’t have bonus and wage raise, but I have 30000 yen/month as not well specified 手当。So it’s like basic wage 230000 + 30000 bonus/month. From what I understood last year the 30000 yen/month bonus is only for contract employees. Does the 2-months bonus/year a right guaranteed by law for every regular employee? Or anyway is up to the company? If I change to regular employee is likely I am going to lose those 30000yen/month in exchange for “maybe” yearly bonus.

    Around next week I will meet them to talk about my decision, but because it’s my first working experience in Japan I want to get prepared for things I should make clear before taking my decision.

    Should I ask for a (written) economic prospect of both hypothesis before making a choice?

    I made some research in Japanese about the two types of contract , and it seems the regular employer has all the merits.

    But I still want to understand if there is any tricky point somewhere. I feel suspicious that they let me choose the contract.:emoji_thinking:

    I think about: taxes , maternity leave, paid vacations, resignation, etc.
    Probably is important to say I don't intend to work long for this company.

    I would be really glad If you have any advice about the choice.

    Thank you guys!:emoji_grinning:
     
  2. Majestic

    Majestic 先輩

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    Bonuses are not a guaranteed right of any employee (unless it explicitly says so in your contract).
    There is no Japanese law that says companies must pay regular employees (or contract employees) any kind of bonus.
    If you've worked for this company for a year, and you don't intend to work for them much longer, take whichever option makes you the happiest. Usually "regular employee" is more desirable as it implies more stability in your future as opposed to a contract employee. However, if you are not going to stay much longer, it is almost an irrelevant point.
     
  3. momonoki

    momonoki Kouhai

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    Thank you Majestic for the reply! I think I would choose the regular employer's option . It may help to have a regular job position record in my resume for the next time I search for a new job.
     
  4. Glenski

    Glenski Just me

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    Traditionally, companies take an annual salary and divide it into 12 equal portions for the months and 2 unequal portions for the bonuses. It's not a legal requirement.

    Are there differences in health care plan or time off or travel reimbursement? Will the overall salary change (and perhaps affect your tax situation)?

    Having your status as regular employee may look better when you apply for the next job. Indefinite contract status does not necessarily mean you are there forever, so you could get fired in a year if they downsize. After 5 years, though, you legally have the option of deciding whether to be a full-timer permanently.
     
  5. DragonAsh

    DragonAsh 後輩

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    Others have already made good points above. One point to consider, seisha-in may be eligible for 退職金 (severance pay) that you otherwise would not get.

    I've seen and handled numerous cases of contract employees transitioning to seisha-in, and in none of the cases did the person take a base pay cut. So I would be very surprised if that was the case in your situation, but the easiest way to confirm this is to simply ask HR what the terms would be if you went to seisha-in, they would completely understand why you're asking.

    That you were a seisha-in will have zero bearing on your future job prospects. I suppose you could theoretically argue it's a negative ('the company committed to this person by making him seisha-in, and he quit' etc).
     
  6. momonoki

    momonoki Kouhai

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    Thank you Glensky and Dragonash.

    Today I talked with the person in charge of the company I work. As I expected there is a pay cut in the seishain’s case.

    Indefinite period contract employee

    基本給 Base pay 230,000

    特別手当 Bonus 30,670

    Total (monthly) 260,670, (annual) 312,80万

    残業代 overtime pay 1,797


    Sheisha-in

    基本給(年齢給)salary based on age 132,100

    基本給(職能給)salary based on work evaluation 80,000

    残業代 overtime pay 1,658

    Bonus 2times/year (1-month pay x2)

    Total(including bonus) (monthly) 247,625 (annual) 297,15万


    The contract employee’s pay changes depending on the company they dispatch me to. So the pay can raise, as drop off.

    The seishain pay is obviously cut down, but it won’t change in case I’ll change the workplace. Pay will raise slowly every year.

    They told me in the future I can change the contract, in both ways.

    The pay’s difference is 12,375/month and 148500/year. And I don’t really feel I want to keep this job for the next 10 years.

    I don’t know what to do.. :emoji_frowning2:
     
  7. DragonAsh

    DragonAsh 後輩

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    That is...strange. Although to be fair I don't have much experience at construction companies.
    I assume the overtime pay is per hour? Strange that the seisha-in would also have overtime...

    I would double-check that there aren't other things you haven't asked about yet (transportation costs? taishoku-kin?), but based on those numbers, tell them you don't see the need to take a paycut.
     
  8. Mike Cash

    Mike Cash 骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう

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    Not at all strange.

    Actually collecting overtime pay is a different matter, though.
     
  9. momonoki

    momonoki Kouhai

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    Actually, I asked why there is a pay cut in the seisha in case. They told me that the contract'employee pay is based on how much the company
    I'm dispatched to (派遣先) pays for me. If I change workplace, the pay, as contract employee, would change too. But in the case of seisha-in my company would guarantee me, no matter what workplace is, a lower, but still stable, salary. If I prefer to take the risk of an unstable pay, but potentially higher paid (because it depends on workplace) then I would choose contract employee.
    Stable but low VS potentially high but unstable, that's the issue.

    Considering it's not my life-dream job, and considering my current pay, I think I prefer to stick with the indefinite period contract.

    Transportation cost is the same, and taishoku-kin is guaranteed only with seisha-in.
    In both cases the overpay work pay is per hour.
     
  10. Toritoribe

    Toritoribe 禁漁期
    Staff Member Moderator

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    Sorry for nitpicking and off-topic, but 正社員 is actually sei-shain, not seisha-in. 正 is a prefix here, meaning right, correct, proper, regular or along the line (e.g. 正四角形, 正捕手, 正答). Indeed 員 is a suffix, meaning "doer/member", and therefore 社員 means company worker/employee, but 員 is not attached to 正社 in 正社員. A common word 正社 doesn't exist in the first place. First, there is a word 社員, and then 正 is attached to it. In fact, there are many other words ending with 社員 to represent other types of employee, for instance 契約社員, 派遣社員, 出向社員. In conclusion, the word construction of 正社員 is different from many other "two kanji compound word + suffix 員" such like 捜査員, 乗組員, 飼育員, 販売員, 劇団員 etc.
     

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