The hiring rate for those who graduated from university this spring stood at 98 percent as of April 1, up 0.4 percentage point from a year earlier and matching the record high set two years ago, the labor and education ministries said Friday.
Meanwhile, the employment rate for new high school graduates came to 98.1 percent at the end of March, down 0.1 point.
“Companies’ need for recruits remains high,” an education ministry official said.
The hiring rate represents the proportion of new graduates who secured employment against those who sought jobs.
The rate for new university graduates was up in five of the nation’s six regions, with Hokkaido-Tohoku and Kinki rewriting their respective record highs.
Amid the coronavirus epidemic, however, informal job offers for 107 graduates had been canceled as of June 10, while the start of employment for 994 graduates had been postponed, according to the labor ministry. These cases were particularly visible in the hotel and restaurant industries.
The coronavirus crisis is also forcing airline companies to suspend recruitment activities for students set to graduate next spring.
A recent private-sector survey has shown that the hiring rate for next spring’s graduates is likely to be lower than a year before.
The government is asking business groups to conduct recruitment activities in the longer term, while closely watching the situation.
Your news needs your support
Since the early stages of the COVID-19 crisis, The Japan Times has been providing free access to crucial news on the impact of the novel coronavirus as well as practical information about how to cope with the pandemic. Please consider subscribing today so we can continue offering you up-to-date, in-depth news about Japan.