Business / Corporate

Yamato to hire 9,000 new workers, covering payroll costs through fee hike

Kyodo

Leading parcel delivery provider Yamato Holdings Co. is aiming to hire about 9,200 new workers in the current year through next March to reduce overtime among delivery personnel, company sources said Wednesday.

The sharp increase over the previous year will lead to substantially greater personnel costs, but the company plans to pay for its expanded workforce with earnings from a hike in shipping fees planned for September.

A total of 4,200 employees will be hired in permanent and nonpermanent positions, with another 5,000 hired in part-time roles, according to the company’s plan. It would be the largest hiring spree for the company since it added about 16,000 new staff in the year from April 2013 when the company began handling parcels for Amazon.com Inc.’s Japan unit.

The combined payroll for Yamato employees is expected to rise ¥16.3 billion ($145.5 million) from the previous year to ¥530.0 billion, according to the sources.

In the year that ended in March, the number of Yamato employees increased by about 5,200 from the previous year to reach about 202,000 as of the end of March.

As a surge in online shopping has led to a sharp increase in the number of parcels shipped via delivery providers, Yamato’s personnel have taken the brunt, forcing them to constantly work overtime.

After Yamato was found to have failed to pay in full about 47,000 workers for overtime, the company began taking a number of steps, including planning a hike in basic charges and reducing the volume of parcels it handles.

Facing a similar shortage of workers, Yamato’s rivals, including Sagawa Express Co. and Japan Post Co., are also moving to ramp up their hiring.