A rirekisho (履歴書) is a Japanese style resume (or curriculum vitae). Traditionally, a blank rirekisho is purchased and handwritten. There are a couple of different types of rirekisho available: for part-time positions, for full-time employment after graduation, and for people changing jobs or careers. Almost all types of resume use the standards defined by JIS.
Making a resume
If you want to make a Japanese resume, it is best to start early. First of all, exactly what to write is confusing even if you know the Japanese, so you will probably want to enlist Japanese friends or colleagues to proofread. And second, whereas most Japanese people write their resumes by hand, many ALTs can't write kanji very well, so you may want to create our resumes on the computer (Ideally, a handwritten resume is best!). If you can't find a template online — or even if you can — it is a decent idea to go to a bookstore, buy a blank rirekisho, and mimic that formatting in Microsoft Excel or Office. One good thing about starting early is that most of your resume stays the same over time. Here is a great post on how to write your rirekisho. If you do decide to handwrite your resume and are not confident in your writing skills, I recommend having a Japanese friend or colleague write the resume in very light pencil, so you can trace over their writing.
- Sample Rirekisho.xls (MS Excel file)
Differences to a western Resume
Because of differing labor laws, Japanese may ask prospective employees questions that would not be allowed in a western country. For example, it is not uncommon for Japanese employers to require applicants to provide full color photos and answer information about their marital status.
|Leaving JET Checklist|
|Finances||Pension Refund • Pension book • Selling your stuff • Return tickets • Shipping items home|
|Career||Returners Checklist • Preparing your resume • Preparing your Japanese resume • Working in Japan|
|After Leaving||Reverse culture shock|