Are you looking for a new job and want to know how to write a rirekisho (履歴書), a Japanese resume? We’ve got you covered! Use our downloadable template and writing guide in this article to prepare your rirekisho and get hired in no time!
How to get started with rirekisho! Download the template and write a Japanese resume
In Japan you generally need two documents to apply for a job:
① A Japanese resume (rirekisho 履歴書) which shows your basic (name, date of birth, address etc.) and background (education, work experience) information
② A Japanese CV (shokumu-keirekisho 職務経歴書) which describes your past work experience and skills in detail
Your Japanese resume is used to give a quick summary of your information for companies to understand your experiences and qualifications. It is usually the first document you have to prepare when applying for a job and gives the first impression to your potential employer.
Many employers prefer handwritten resumes, but this will probably depend on the industry or type of job you are applying for. You can find blank resumes for this purpose from the convenience store. Alternatively, you can download a template to print or send digitally to your potential employer.
In this article, we will show you how to write a Japanese resume and provide you with a template to download so you can get started straight away!
Download the resume template
Click the link below to download a Japanese resume template. You can choose between Microsoft Word and a PDF version to either input digitally or print out and fill in by hand.
After you’ve downloaded the document, scroll down below to find out how to write your Japanese resume!
How to write a Japanese resume
The Japanese resume is separated into different sections. First, you have the basic, personal information with the photo, your name and address, and contact details. Next is the education and employment information section followed by the skills and qualification section. Fourth is the appeal point, commuting time and family information and finally the last section is the personal requests.
How to write the basic information section on a Japanese resume
Let’s take a closer look at how to fill in each box in the basic information section.
Dress professionally and take a photo to include in the resume. You can find photo booths that take pictures at the correct size, which can be easier and more professional than trying to take one yourself.
Make sure the image has been taken in the past 3 months. It should be a picture from the chest-up, facing the camera front-on.
Try to be as professional as possible. Men generally wear a dark suit with a tie, women can be a little more flexible with clothes but make sure it is professional. Don’t wear a hat, don’t sport flashy makeup.
② Resume Submission Date
Enter the date in the format [year/month/day], in which you will submit your resume. If you have written the date you created the resume instead that is only acceptable with a recent date (no 3-month-old resumes!).
③氏名 – Full Name
Enter your name in the space next to 氏名 in English or Katakana, or if you have a name that includes kanji, write the kanji. First, write your last name then your first name after a space.
Enter the reading of your name in hiragana above this is the box tagged ふりがな (furigana).
In this template “furigana” is written in hiragana (ふりがな), but if it is written in katakana (フリガナ) then you should write the reading in katakana instead.
④生年月日 – Date of birth (Age)
In the above template case you can write the date of birth in the format [year (年)/month (月)/day (日生)].
There is a space to write your current age. The kanji “満” refers to current and “才” for age. So you can write “満Age才”.
In some other templates, you may be asked to write your age in the Japanese calendar, instead of Western. In this case, you are generally asked to choose between 昭和 (Showa 1926 – 1988) and 平成 (Heisei 1989 – 2019). There are some websites that allow you to convert your age to the Japanese calendar.
⑤現住所 – Current Address
Enter your current address. If you live in Japan it’s preferable to fill in the address in kanji in the large section and the furigana in the “ふりがな” box, as we did with the name. The numbers in the address do not need furigana.
⑥連絡先 – Contact Information
As the contact information is usually the same as the current address you can write “同上” which means “same as above”.
⑦性別 – Gender
Here you can circle 男 (male) or 女 (female).
⑧電話 – Telephone number
Enter your Japanese phone number, a number that can be easily reached. If you don’t have a Japanese number and are using an overseas number, enter the country code too.
⑨メールアドレス – E-mail
Input an email address you check regularly.
⑩電話 – Telephone number
If you want to write down an alternative phone number you can do so in this section. If not then you can leave this blank or write “同上”.
How to write the education and work experience section on a Japanese resume
学歴 – Education
In the first line write and centre “学歴” to specify you will be talking about your education first.
In the education section list the name of the school and department in which you studied. Enter your education history from senior high school graduation then go onto the date you entered and graduated university and master courses etc.
“卒業” (sotsugyo) mean graduation and “入学” (nyugaku) means enrollment.
If you want to be more specific or if it is not obvious from the title you can add the country at the beginning of the school name.
If you are still in school, write “卒業見込み” (expected graduation) after the school name.
職歴 – Work History
Below your educational background write and centre “職歴” to show you will be moving on to employment history.
Write the names of the company you joined with the earliest coming first.
Start with the date you entered your first company and after the company name write “入社” (joined company). In the next line write the date you left the company with “退職” (left company) after the company name.
If you are still employed, in the next line write “現在に至る” (currently still employed).
You can continue over to the right, upper hand of the resume if you need more room.
When you have completed writing your employment history, in the next line write “以上” (end) to show there is nothing left to this section.
How to write the qualifications section on a Japanese resume
Write any licenses or qualifications you have in this field. Ensure the date is correct and the name is the official qualification name. If you do not have any qualifications, you can write 特になし(none in particular) on the first line.
How to write the hobbies, appeal points, commute time, family situation on a Japanese resume
① 志望の動機、特技、好きな学科、アピールポイント – Skills and appeal points
Make sure you fill in the 志望の動機、特技、好きな学科、アピールポイント with something that will catch the eye of the employer.
志望の動機 – motivation for applying. You can write what you think is interesting about the job here
特技 – special skills. What skill do you have that are relevant for the job? Write them here.
好きな学科 – interests.
アピールポイント – appeal points. How would you be good for the job? Appeal your skills and experiences to the company.
② 通勤時間 – Commute time
Enter how long it takes to commute to work. If it’s an hour write 約1時間, for a shorter commute of say 40 minutes you can write 約40分.
③ 扶養家族（配偶者を除く）– Number of dependents (excluding spouse)
Write here how many family members (excluding your spouse) are supported by your income. If you are family of 4 with a spouse and 2 children you support you would write 2 here. Even if your spouse is supported by your income they are not counted in this section. If your children already have jobs of their own and support themselves they will not be included here.
④ 配偶者 – Spouse and 配偶者の扶養義務 – Spouse Obligation
配偶者 – Spouse
If you are married and have a spouse, circle “有” (yes) and if not then circle “無” (no).
配偶者の扶養義務 – Spouse Obligation
Circle “有” (yes) if you are planning to support your spouse with your income. If your spouse is working circle “無” (no).
How to write the space for personal requests on a Japanese resume
The final space is the “本人希望記入欄”, the space for personal requests. Although there is a section available to write, any requests are often best discussed in the interview. If there are any requests you think are very important you can write them here but most people just write “貴社規定に従います” which means “I will comply with your company regulations”.
Are you ready to write your Japanese resume?
And that completes the Japanese resume! Do you feel prepared to get started on your resume? Even if your Japanese is flawless its always a good idea to have it checked by a friend before submitting it, especially if it’s your first time writing one.
Do you have any questions or issues filling in your Japanese resume? Let us know in the comments or on Facebook!
If you’re looking for a job, check out our jobs page: Guidable jobs.
We hope to see you there soon.
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