Fast Retailing’s Uniqlo to turn over half of Japan part-timers into regular staff

Fast Retailing’s Uniqlo to turn over half of Japan part-timers into regular staff
Wednesday, Mar 19, 2014
TOKYO – Fast Retailing Co said on Wednesday it plans to turn just over half of its 30,000 part-timers at its Uniqlo casual clothing stores in Japan into regular staff over two to three years in a bid to secure stable employment.
Uniqlo has long suffered high turnover among part-time sales staff – a byproduct of a rigorous and lengthy training process that has helped it earn a reputation for first-rate store service.

The move by Uniqlo stands in contrast to the trend in Japan towards hiring more temporary and other irregular contract workers – a phenomenon that has pushed overall wages down and proved a hurdle for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s plan to boost consumer spending and, by extension, the economy.
Fast Retailing said it has started interviewing candidates among its part-time sales staff in Japan for 16,000 regular jobs, including those who now work irregular shifts due to childcare or other personal reasons.
With plans to add more than 100 stores domestically by the end of the decade, Uniqlo will also recruit new graduates and mid-career workers.
Uniqlo said it did not expect a big rise in labour costs because it would be saving on spending for training.
The Fast Retailing group, whose other brands include Theory, Comptoir des Cotonniers and GU, had 23,982 regular employees as of August 31, 2013.

About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (, the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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