Carmakers Are Learning Japan’s Tech Talent Doesn’t Come Cheap

Headhunter Casey Abel spent four months trying to hire a data-center architect for a Japanese automaker, including five meetings with the client — one with the top executive. In the end, the IT specialist joined an e-commerce company abroad for significantly more money. “There’s just a massive mismatch in salaries,” said Abel, managing director at recruiter HCCR K.K., who has spent as long as a year trying to land some IT candidates. “You’ve got some engineers making 20 million yen ($170,000) a year. Then you try to fit them in the traditional manufacturer-based salary structure where it should be 7 to 9 million yen.” Attracting the best information technologists is becoming increasingly important for Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co. as they seek a bigger share of…


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