Grab coffee, schedule an office visit-a new job hunting App- Wantedly founder- Akiko Naka

對於重視工作成就感的千禧世代而言,找工作很多時候其實很像談戀愛,怎麼說呢?妳有很多的條件、妳必須先認識對方,稍微相處後才知道適不適合長期走下去。找工作也是一樣的,不過比較可惜的是,現在大部份找工作的方式都是較為正式的面試,透過妳本身的能力與薪水等等,這之中忽略掉的可能是妳的個性、與公司之間文化是否適合,或是妳的同事是什麼樣的人。 今天我們邀請到的 Akiko Naka(仲 暁子),她是目前在日本非常受歡迎的求職 app「Wantedly」的創辦人。Akiko Naka 當初想的是:找工作很重要的是彼此之間的個性是否合適,以及你們之間的視野是否一樣,如此才能長期地在公司工作得開心。

哈囉,各位 CAREhER 的讀者大家好,我是 Tiffany。又到了語音專訪的時間。每個禮拜三我們都會帶著大家到世界各地,看看其他城市的 CAREhER Woman,她們是如何找到工作上的成就感,或者在轉換職業上是如何去下決定?
今天我們邀請到的 Akiko Naka(仲 暁子),她是目前在日本非常受歡迎的求職 app「Wantedly」的創辦人。Akiko Naka 當初想的是:找工作很重要的是彼此之間的個性是否合適,以及你們之間的視野 (vision)是否一樣,如此才能長期地在公司工作得開心。所以她的想法是,工作就像談戀愛,大家一起喝咖啡先認識彼此,沒有壓力地開始這段認識的過程,之後再決定是否正式去工作。
Wantedly 自2010年創辦,目前將近有 60 萬的活躍用戶。她想做的是改變企業徵才、改變人才找工作的方式,所以他們使用的是Facebook 這樣的社群媒體來做串接。妳可以在Wantedly 的app 上看到妳的朋友,或是其它有興趣的徵才資訊;妳還可以選擇「我想先去喝咖啡」、「我要先去拜訪辦公室」,再決定要不要申請這份工作。
今年有許多傳統的日商 SONY、SUNTORY 這些企業已經開始使用 Wantedly 來徵才,可見日本的市場已經稍微在改變。Akiko 本身是工程師,曾經在 Goldman Saches(高盛銀行)工作,後來也到了日本 facebook 工作,在 2010 年決定自行出來創立 Wantedly,至今 Wantedly 的表現非常地優異。那我們今天就請到 Akiko 來跟我們聊一聊她的創業理念,以及這樣新的求職方式可能是將來的趨勢?同時以日本人的立場、觀察來告訴我們,將來 5 年在日本市場的發展,以及她看到的是哪些產業是很適合大家去嘗試換工作的?
我們歡迎 Akiko! Hi, Akiko!
Hi, TIffany!Nice to meet you.

I had a little introduction to our readers about what Wantdly is doing. Since Wantedly has the vision to change the way of recruiting, can you elaborate what exactly Wantedly is doing? a casual nature of recruiting which is very refreshing,can you elaborate more about Wantedly?

OK. Wantedly connects people and companies based on vision.Here are three points:
Firstly, we don’t allow companies to post their salary and job conditions on the job postings which make them focus on vision ‘ What do they want them do?’ That enables companies to express their vision and make people and company match purely on vision. So this is the first point.
Secondly, we make the matching very casual. Normally, candidates imply for the job, and they send resume in interview. But instead, on Wantedly, people apply for casual office visit. When they imply for a job, they just visit the job office with candidate and with company. People in the company have a casual conversation which make them express what they are in true way instead of speaking officially. So that’s the second point.
Lastly, we have an original social graph in Wantedly service. Users to visualize will see who are in the company or friends who are working in the company. Before users or candidates apply for the office visit, they can make sure to get the reference what kind of company is. By it, that also works for company looking for people to hire too. So by the applicants to the company, they can see friends in the companies and employees and the candidates, and get to know what kind of person is.
So the three points are what we separate ourselves from other job posting sites.

We actually downloaded it and try to play around with it. I thought it was interesting that you can click on ‘ I want to visit’. So how did you realize that office visit actually is a very crucial plan for future employees to determine whether they like the work place or not? Or even for the employers to know whether this employee fits in their team or not?

That idea came out when we wanted to use that Wantedly by ourselves. We have about 50 members working with us now and 50 percent of those people came from through Wanteldy. Initially, when we were very small, we didn’t have many competed salary or benefits compare to other large companies. So the only thing we are competed were visions.
I think there are two kinds of people in this world. One is very high performance, high-achiever.One is not very good, not very performing people. And high-achievers tend to be satisfied with their work. They are very appreciated by the company so they tend to get more interesting job opportunity, and they get promoted more often. So those people are not seriously looking for a job most of time.
On the other hand, not really high performing people tend to blame their boss or the company. And most time they look for a job.So if you want to recruit talented people, and those people are not looking for job, as high chances, they probably want apply for a job. They could drop by your office because it’s very casual and they don’t seriously have to go to the interview. So that is why we invent it.
In Japan, job hunting and job changing is not very common. Recent 10 years, I think young people started to change their jobs in every 2 or 3 years in their career. But for my parents generation, changing jobs is a scary thing. Most people once join the company, they will work until their retirements.But things changed because Japanese economy is not really doing well. Comparing with what it was before. My point is that high achiever are looking for job so they want to apply for our company but they would probably drop by the visit. Making the visit casual enables to meet the candidate and talented people.
So making the job switching period very long so they might just come for visit first and then they remember that company. Next time when they really want to switch their jobs, they go back to apply for that company.

That’s such an innovative idea. How does cooperation or company first react to that? Because for the talents, it’ very fun. I would love to go to all the office and just check it out. But for the cooperation, there are so many security issues or how did they respond to that? and how do you slowly persuade them? I know you have lots of big company working with Wantedly right now.

When we started 3-4 years ago, we only had the first company had only 3 clients. They are all my friends. I was like ‘Hey, please please. Wantedly is like not very famous one thing, but please believe in me and use Wantedly because you don’t have to charge money.’ That’s how I persuaded those people to use Wantedly in the beginning. But after that, when we try to expand the service, we can’t really spare extra time to just meet them and have a casual office visit. But the coolest thing happening is that when company accept the casual visit, it actually works. For example, the really really small company which tried to hire a good engineering in other job applicant media, they successfully hired a top talented person. Tokyo university is one of the highest university in Japan. The engineer who graduated from the university and have a Doctor Ph.D. That kind of story came up. It happens all over the industry and that created a buzz.
Just like word of mouth.
So that’s how Wantedly became popular in the industry. First year second year that was only in the start up industries. However, things changed this year or last year. We have about 10,000 clients using Wantedly in Japan. About 50 percent of the clients are start ups, so they will gradually expand to other industries like impure NGO or governments, or like small retail stores like accounting offices. After expanding, more and more people know about Wantedly. Some large cooperation started to pay attention. We have companies like SONY, tv company……
Even most traditional Japanese cooperation is now using Wantedly. That shows a lot.
Yeah, I think things changed.

For recruiting and match making, sounds like the company found the talents they wanted. So what do you think is the main factor that let other cooperations are now wanting to trust the whole process? And they are accepting the candidates that came through Wantedly.

I think that’s very distinguishing how Wantedly is so successful right now in comparison to all the other. Because you’re even replacing headhunting services. You’re finding better candidates then headhunting services with lower costs.
The reason why Wantedly so successful is clearly base on the fact that people are able to hire very good talents. Once I start to explain why Wantedly works, it’s really complicated, because it has different factors involved like searching media and some very fancy tech works. So I think most our clients not saying the reason that they enter Wantedly. They just use Wantedly because it purely works.

 I recently read some articles and reports saying that Wantedly just move into a new office, too. Can you tell us more about your own office since Wantedly focus so much on company cultures. What is Wantedly’s company culture yourself then?

Our religion is make people happy with their work. My parents are teaching in the university, so I grew up seeing my parents really love what they do. In a way, they are called ‘Workaholic’. They spent many hours in their work but they don’t feel that it’s an obligation. So I always thought when I grow up, I can become like my parents. I want to do what I like. Make money and enjoy my life. After I graduated, I joined an investment bank (Goldman Sachs), and it turned out that most people still struggle or they don’t really like what they do. Once they have family, when they have to provide their kids, they have to keep going on their job. I thought that’s not really productive. When people are doing what they don’t really like, they can’t really focus 100 percent. Our religion is base on those experiences or change and make people section of work as more like a self realization or contribution to the world.
That’s a very good vision.
Yeah.How we operate to realize the vision is that we have many engineers in our company. The idea came from the year when I worked for Facebook. So after Goldman Sachs I worked for Facebook Japan. Company like Facebook affects the world by making the product that people use. And they come from engineers. I applied that to our company too, so 50 percent of the employees are all engineers and they have more salary than other positions.

It’s interesting you mentioned engineers because Taiwan is also heavily tech base and we actually produce a lot of engineers every year. Actually there are more and more female engineers. Do you have any advice for any foreign talents since a lot of Taiwanese people want to go abroad and work in Japan. And Wantedly has a lot of first-hand knowledge of what company is hiring what kind of talents. Can you give us a little breakdown telling us which industry might be the best for engineers or Taiwanese talents to go and to look for it?

hmm…Definitely the internet industry. I would say.

A lot of start ups, right?

Yes. I think there are about 5 thousand start ups and more founding. For example, like yesterday, company called Gree announced they’ve raised about 30 billions us dollars.
That’s a lot.
That sights of money couldn’t be afforded or founded maybe like 5 or 10 years ago. So things have changed a lot. Those founding situation changed and now making more and more success. And more start ups. Speaking of Japan, the population is decreasing.
Yes, it’s aging.
Very fast, within 20 years, more than 50 percent of population will be over 60 year-old.
That explains that why Japanese economy is not really going do well in the long term because internal domestics conventional declines. In short term, Mr. Abe is doing many things to make the companies go well, but not in long term.
That’s a turning point that the Olympics game comes 5 years later.
Yeah. In my opinion, there are like 3 sectors which will be strong and growing long term. One is medical. Another is nursing home for elder citizens.As a country, I think we gonna have more and more people who become nursing care.Lastly, I think it would be the Internet sector. Most of them are young companies even like Gree and DeNA. Those companies are still like ten years old. Another next DeNA in Gree company are being generated every year. The destination for engineers to be is Japanese start ups.

Last question would be do you have any plans of expanding overseas?Right now even in Taiwan, we can download Wantedly and we can look through the jobs. But you have several start ups in Taiwan that are also using Wantedly to recruit. So any other more official expanding plan?

Yes. We’ve been focusing on Southeast Asia in last year. Officially Indonesia is our focus, and we have 250 clients in Indonesia and several thousands users in Indonesia. Next, I think Singapore is the next biggest market.
Their start ups are blooming too. The start up section there. Especially the government is investing a lot in that.
Yeah, the largest market we are into is Indonesia. But of course we want to base our company in other Asian countries such as Mainland China or Hong Kong or Taiwan. In my opinion, will be hotter than expanding in Southeast Asia.
Those listeners who are interested in Wantedly in Japan. You can switch your country on recruiter of the sites or apps. Changing the country you wanna browse. In Japan, you can browse all the things, if you can read Japanese. Actually we have foreigners working in our company too. I see numbers of people working in the Internet industries is increasing all over the world. I think Asia is close. We have similar backgrounds.
Like you said before, visiting the office is their first step. And then maybe they can go back and think and prepare. then eventually, they might work in Japan.We want to thank you, Akiko. For sharing with us such a forward thinking different and fun recruiting app, and your company.
今天我們謝謝 Akiko 跟 CAREhER 的讀者分享這麼多事情,那 Akiko有說了,如果你們有到日本可以試試看用 Wantedly 的 app,跟 Wantedly安排 scheduled一個 office visit,去看看他們在白金台一個全新的、很漂亮的辦公室,那我們謝謝 Akiko!