Interest in Japan from J-pop idols
When I was in junior high school, I became interested in Japanese J-POP idols and got to know AKB 48. Initially, I supported JKT48, the Indonesian idol girl’s group, and later began supporting AKB48 from Japan as well. While AKB48 has a plethora of content, not all of it was translated into English. This motivated me to embark on a self-study journey to learn Japanese, aiming to better understand the contents.
To learn Japanese on my own, I initially started by comparing song lyrics. Since many JKT48 songs are Indonesian translations of AKB48’s Japanese songs, I would compare the lyrics of both versions and know, “This word means this!” I also learned a lot of Japanese by watching Japanese variety shows. After that, as my desire to learn more Japanese grew, I purchased textbooks and began studying from them. This is how I passed the JLPT N3 in my third year of high school. After entering university, I was busy studying for my major and didn’t have much time to study Japanese, but in my fourth year of university, I had more time and dedicated myself to studying Japanese again. As a result, I passed the JLPT N2 in July this year.
I also went to Japan once on a trip when I was in high school. At that time, I spent 8-10 days visiting Osaka, Kyoto, Nara and Tokyo. Wherever I went, I felt that the streets were really clean and there was not much garbage on the streets. In addition, the buses and trains in Japan are very convenient and I can go anywhere I want to go by bus or train. However, while Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, boasts a well-developed transportation network, other regions lack such infrastructure, making it necessary to own a motorcycle or car to lead a functional life. From this point of view, I felt that Japan is a wonderful country.
Job hunting through FAST OFFER International
When I was a third-year university student, my school, Bandung Institute of Technology, signed an agreement with ASIA to JAPAN, and I participated in ASIA to JAPAN’s Japanese language classes for about three months. So, I knew about ASIA to JAPAN, and when I visited their website, I saw information about FAST OFFER International, which caught my interest from the beginning.
Considering my graduation timeline, I registered in June 2023 and had a brief interview with ASIA to JAPAN staff. I cleared the interview and subsequently received offers from some Japanese companies. However, my initial interviews did not go smoothly. This was because I was not familiar with Japanese job interview practices. Although I had experience with internship interviews in Indonesia, the interview style of Japanese companies was different. I believe that Japanese companies place great emphasis on the candidate’s level of interest in the company during the interview. However, I had not done much research on the company in the beginning, and when I was asked questions about the company during the interview, I sometimes could not answer them. The interviewers advised me to conduct more thorough research on the companies, and through several interviews, I was able to understand the interview patterns better.
I then received offers from several companies again in August. The first interview with one of them was online, but the company wanted a face-to-face interview for the final interview, so I had to go to Japan for that. I was very nervous about the face-to-face interview, but the company representative was kind, which helped alleviate my anxiety.
During the interview session in September, I received offers from two companies. I was genuinely thrilled at that moment. Before this, I had failed about six interviews, which made me doubt myself. Nonetheless, I understood that if I were to give up at that point, all my previous efforts would have been in vain. Additionally, the prospect of being able to work in Japan and gain new experiences motivated me to give my best. As a result, I finally received job offers from two companies, which was truly unbelievable. Furthermore, during my high school years, I aspired to attend a university in Japan, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I was not granted permission. Thus, when I received the job offers, it felt like my long-held dream of living in Japan was finally coming true.
After accepting the job offers, I had the opportunity to visit two companies for an on-site tour. My main concern about working in Japan was related to religious practices. However, one of the companies already had a Muslim employee and had designated prayer rooms, which I found to be impressive. The abundant growth opportunities and the company’s understanding of Muslims were decisive factors in my decision to join them.
Goals after joining the company
After joining the company, my first goal is to improve my Japanese language skills. Although I can speak Japanese, my proficiency in keigo (honorific expressions) and business Japanese is still limited. Therefore, I want to enhance my Japanese by actively communicating with my team members.
I would also like to study various new technologies to work as a software engineer at the company where I have been offered a job. I also hope to obtain a qualification in cloud computing. Additionally, since I will be assigned to the research and development department, which allows me to explore various areas, I want to take on new challenges and try different things. In the process, I hope to find what I like best and get involved in that project.
Even if you face rejection, do not be disheartened
I believe some people have desired to work in Japan and have faced rejections in various job interviews. I am one of those who received many rejections. However, upon reflecting on it after receiving a job offer, I realize that it does not mean I am inadequate, but rather that those companies were not the right fit for me. Therefore, even if you face rejection, do not be disheartened. By studying Japanese and improving your interview skills, I believe you will eventually find a company that aligns with you. Keep striving!