Mun-Su Park, a South Korean 밤 알바 university student, details the personal, negative experiences she had working part-time jobs in Japan. Part-time jobs are unusually common in Japan, with many students working at a part-time job to earn supplementary income. Japan has a few unique characteristics that determine their part-time jobs; unsurprisingly, some students go as far as to solely rely on part-time jobs for their economic livelihood.
Keeping in mind that not every part-time job overburdens their employees, there is still a strong work culture in Japan, one which can be seen as more rigid than some other cultures. The cozy nature which makes part-time jobs so appealing to begin with is essentially a key reason behind this grim reality; societal discourse about how to safeguard students and foreigners alike, whilst maintaining a flexible work force, is greatly needed in Japan today. Unfair treatment experienced at part-time jobs includes lack of guaranteed time off and meal expenses, employers arbitrarily adjusting contractual hours, a refusal to draw up employment contracts, and lower pay. While part-time jobs are seen as an additional source of income with little obligation, recent surveys have found many South Korean part-timers working over 40 hours a week, with part-time jobs being the main source of income.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development defines part-time work as persons employed–either employees or self-employed–who usually work less than 30 hours a week at a full-time job. Thus, all full-time workers working more than 15 hours a week should be provided, on average, with a paid vacation each week, and an appropriate weekly vacation pay. The weekly holiday allowance does not apply for workers who have fixed hours less than 15 hours a week.
Workers on holiday visas are not restricted to how many hours they may work during a week. Some companies are aware of this, and can require working holiday visa holders to work significantly more hours because of it.
If you would like to focus more on working experience and less on studying, then going to Korea with a working holiday visa is a better choice. If you are in South Korea studying Korean (on a D-4 visa) or are actually enrolled at university (on a D-2 visa), then you have the option of working in Korea on a part-time basis. As with any international job search, one of the best ways to find work in South Korea as a foreigner is to be in the country already. If you came to South Korea intending to learn Korean, then after your first six months, you will be eligible to begin working on a part-time basis.
Once you pass six months, you can visit the office at your school, who will give you relevant information about documents that you need to get in order to work part-time in Korea. As with any cover letter, Korean recruiters will want to know more concrete details about your work history and qualifications that make you a great candidate for the role to which you are applying. Keep in mind that Korean applicants will usually also discuss their professional growth, their education, personality, and why they want the job for which they are applying.
It is possible to find jobs that are language-neutral that do not require Korean, but employers will be more favourable toward applicants who are fluent in Korean (and/or interested in learning) because this will help them more fully integrate with coworkers and work culture. In addition to networking with Korean domestics, it is also a good idea to network with other expats, since they will be more familiar with what it is like to work in Korea as a foreigner.
Itas not clear if part-time jobs are voluntary, or part-time jobs are the way Korean young people are not finding alternatives to full-time jobs, since data is lacking. Foreign students may also be able to find part-time jobs if they possess special labor permits issued by the government known as Shakugan katsudo kyoka. It is required, and is why some language schools advise students to wait several months before starting looking for part-time jobs, particularly if they are total beginners. Every year, we witness international students being forced out of Japan as they cannot prolong the time of permitted residence in the country because they are working part-time and neglecting their studies.
That is, students who are working the full 28 hours a day in addition to their full-time language studies often have their studies impacted. For Korean language students, the maximum amount of hours worked per week is 20 hours (if you are at least TOPIK I level 2), so make sure not to go over this limit too much. The job participation rate among Korean youth is also lower, as many are involved in informal learning or spending long hours studying for entrance exams for companies, accounting for 4.4% of all people aged 15-29 years old in 2017. In 2017, only 15.9% of young workers in Korea were non-full-time, while the latest OECD average is 22.8%.
In 2015, employed young people aged 20-24 years in other OECD countries held jobs an average of 1.8 years, double that in Korea.3 However, when in their late 20s, both Koreans and all OECD youths had employment rates of 2.1 years. Despite a prolonged search, many younger Koreans do not remain at their first jobs long. In an analysis for their members of a Paris-based organization, Part-Time Workers, the group found that as of 2020, 15.37 percent of all employed Koreans aged 15 and older had a part-time status.
From the perspective of foreign workers, the foreign work permit system is also one which would allow them to work in companies designated by them within certain periods by getting work permits from Korea.