Working in Hiroshima

Updated 2022-12-21 15:38

Hiroshima is a miniature barometer of Japan. Be it the population distribution or economic situation, the socio-economic indicators of Hiroshima prefecture often reflect those of the entire country, hence this notion of a barometer. This got many companies to experiment with their activity there first before going nationwide while taking advantage of the idyllic geographical location of the prefecture and its capital, Hiroshima. But how does one find a job in Hiroshima? Which sectors are recruiting? 

Mapping Hiroshima

Hiroshima is the capital and the most populated city of the Hiroshima prefecture, located in the Chûgoku region. The prefecture, at the southwest of the island of Honshu (the real spelling is "Honshû"), which is the largest island of Japan, has a population of 2.7 million. The capital city lies in the southwest of the prefecture, north of the Seto Inland Sea, and has a population of 1.2 million. The other cities are much less populated, like Fukuyama, in the southeast of the prefecture, which is the second largest city with 460,930 inhabitants.

Kure, further south of Hiroshima, is third, with a population of 214,592. Slightly higher on the map, there's Higashihiroshima, which literally translates into the large island of the west, with Hiroshima meaning large island. It is home to 196,608 souls, while the rest of the prefecture cities have between 130,000 and 50,000 inhabitants. 

Some of them, like the port city of Onomichi, are known to tourists. Located on the Seto Inland Sea, in the southeast of the prefecture, a little further south of Fukuyawa, Onomichi is home to 131,170 inhabitants. The city has contributed greatly to the economic development of the prefecture. Although Onomichi is known by travelers, it remains quiet and preserved from mass tourism. Hiroshima Prefecture is not as popular as Tokyo or Kansai (Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, Kobe). (Source: Japan Bureau of Statistics)

History of Hiroshima

The name "Hiroshima" is expressed in Japanese with the characters "large, spacious" and "island", in fewer words, the "wide island". Hiroshima-shi refers to the city ("shi" for city). Hiroshima-ken designates the prefecture ("ken" for prefecture or county). Ever since its establishment in 1589, the city of Hiroshima has been taking advantage of its geographical position to become a major commercial hub today. Under the Meiji era, Hiroshima was made a strategic military port, and during that period of Japan's restructuring, the city became the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture. From that point on, Hiroshima began its industrial and economic development.

An industrial city

Hiroshima is the industrial powerhouse of the entire Chûgoku. Thanks again to its ideal geographical location, the region attracts many companies and investors. Established along the coast, they have contributed to the development of Hiroshima's port activity. Factories there produce steel, rubber, chemical products, and transport machinery. But you can also find automobile factories as well as shipyards, and in a different field, Hiroshima is one of the country's leading suppliers of needles.

The City of Peace

Hiroshima, along with Nagasaki, is mostly remembered worldwide as the city where the horrors of the first atomic bombs unfolded. The two cities cannot be dissociated from this traumatic episode of world history. The tragedy cost the lives of more than 70% of the population of Hiroshima, with 75,000 people instantly annihilated. About 250,000 others died in the following months and years. In 1949, the government passed the Hiroshima City Peace Memorial Construction Act with a funding plan to rebuild the city. Since then, Hiroshima has become the symbol of peace. It managed to erase all traces of the trauma. Today's Hiroshima looks like any other city in Japan, and the only ruins preserved are those of the dome in the Peace Memorial Park.

Hiroshima's economy

"Miniature Japan", "National Barometer", and "Large-Scale Hub", Hiroshima Prefecture has many nicknames that reflect its status as a prime location for high-end industrial production. This can be ascertained in almost every field: automotive, electronics, fishing, sports equipment, and even in the film sector.

Heavy industries

In the city of Hiroshima, automobile production is king. The aerospace sector and shipbuilding complete the podium. Around them are a myriad of industrial equipment and transportation corporations as well as steel production, electronics, rubber, and chemical companies. Not surprisingly, the history of the city is strongly connected to the sea. The oldest dock in Japan was originally built there in the 19th century. The city's expertise in shipbuilding is well-established and is highly sought by companies. They also know that they will have no trouble finding qualified employees on-site. This is an opportunity to be seized by foreigners working in these specialized fields.


Thanks to its heavy industry, the entire Hiroshima prefecture has experienced sustained development. However, pollution generated by this sector is becoming an ever-growing worrying issue and ultimately calls for immediate actions to deal with climate change. To protect the Seto Inland Sea and the land, the prefecture has launched a vast clean-up operation. It has gathered the support of major companies in the environmental sector to provide equipment that is more respectful of nature and uses less energy. These companies also work on innovations, with projects to fight pollution, clean up water and reinstate soils, etc. Hiroshima prefecture is said to be one of the most prolific in this regard. Once again, expatriates who are skilled in this domain, like engineers in sustainable development and the environment, can easily find a job in their field.


Hiroshima prefecture is the leading oyster producer in Japan. It is part of a thriving aquaculture activity but is threatened by pollution and climate change that are the result of human activities. This complex problem is similar to that of pollution caused by heavy industries, which are the driving force of the Japanese economy. In the face of the environmental challenge, there is definitely the urgency to take relevant actions. As such, the prefecture has created a research agency to ensure the sound development of fishing and aquaculture while preserving the environment.


Most sports equipment manufacturers in Japan concentrate in Hiroshima. In this prefecture, sports are an important part of people's life, especially when it comes to baseball. Basketball and soccer also have their enthusiasts, and many professional athletes are based in Hiroshima.
Such overall activity results in the creation of jobs in various fields, namely in sportswear and sports equipment design, equipment manufacturing, project and quality control management solutions, environment-friendly materials development, and, of course, professional sports. Actually, the city and the prefecture are making investments to attract world-class sports competitions.

The film industry

And why not work in the motion picture industry? In March 2022, an adaptation of Haruki Murakami's novel of the same name, Drive My Car, won the 79th Golden Globe Award. The year before, the film won the Best Screenplay Award at the 74th Cannes Film Festival. It was a consecration not only for the director Ryusuke Hamaguchi and his team but also for the city of Hiroshima, a full-fledged protagonist of the film. The city seized the opportunity of the success of Drive my Car to boast that many film shoots are made in Hiroshima. The city is also home to many studios related to the world of films, TV, advertising, and graphics.

Major companies in Hiroshima City 

Automotive Industry

In Hiroshima, the automotive industry can count on Mazda Motor Corporation. With Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, both located in Naka in the Hiroshima Prefecture, they are the two regional industrial giants that are considered to be the perfect magnets for both local and foreign talent. They also attract large innovation companies like Kumahira, a leader in safes for financial institutions or Asukanet, a specialist in 3D technology.

Sustainable development

On the environmental side, MHI Solutions Technologies and Tsuneishi Kamtecs Corporation are innovating in renewable energy and pollution control.


Hiroshima is home to major sports equipment manufacturers like Molten Corporation, Mikasa Corporation and Hakuhodo Company.

Motion picture industry

The Hiroshima Film Commission is on a thriving hiring spree. The announcements are only available on their Japanese website, hence the need to learn the language. Other studios there offer very interesting opportunities, namely in advertising with companies like BuzzCrow, or in multimedia with Lab.751.

How to look for a job in Hiroshima


To find a job in the city of Hiroshima, check out the general and specialized websites that are relevant to your sector. If the company has its own website, find out if it is possible to apply directly online. The best way to kick off your search is to do it in Japanese! You will be able to find job offers that do not appear on English websites.

Career events

The prefecture regularly organizes numerous one-on-one and online events to bring job seekers and companies together. Summer in Hiroshima is a particularly busy time, with around 30 meetings, seminars and professional speed-dating events taking place around the city. If you are already in Japan, it can be a good idea to join job search groups and associations, especially those related to your sector.

Personal and professional networks

Be they your contacts from your university abroad or in Japan, friends, former colleagues, or simple word of mouth, make sure to enable all these channels when possible. Also, register on local professional social networks, private groups, self-help platforms, and so on.

Tips for finding a job in Hiroshima

Make a thorough assessment of the city

Have you already visited the city and the prefecture where it is located? Since we assume that you did not choose Hiroshima by chance, we strongly suggest that you take a first good look around.  Those who love Hiroshima talk about how some areas have a traditional and authentic feel, much more so than some areas of Kyoto City, which have been transformed by mass tourism. Find out more about the job market in Hiroshima. With the Japanese labor market being very competitive, not to mention the recent crisis, start by asking yourself some basic questions: What are your chances of finding a job? Why should employers choose you and not someone else? Your answers will be very crucial, especially in an environment where high-level diplomas play a significant role.

Look for the right fit

This article is focused on finding long-term employment in Hiroshima. This is the type of job for which you can get a Japanese work visa. This does not include odd jobs called baito in Japanese. Be sure to have a clear picture of your goals. Why did you come to live in Japan? Why Hiroshima? 

Learn the Japanese language  

It is difficult to find a job in Japan, even more so since COVID and its resulting economic crisis. Things can be even worse when you move away from the major employment pool of the capital, Tokyo. But difficult does not mean impossible. Give yourself the best chance by speaking Japanese, in addition to English and other languages. This is a definite must if you want to live and work in Hiroshima.

Language teaching

There is a common myth that says that the easiest way to get a work visa in Japan is to register as a language teacher. Actually, this is not true! Applying for a job in Japan is more challenging than it may seem. Faced with an increase in unskilled profiles, Japanese language schools have toughened their requirements. You must prove your skills and qualifications in order to be a tutor. Some of these schools require multiple interviews and tests, just like in major companies. The job specs are very tough and may not always be right for you. Besides, always keep in mind that you can only work in the position listed on your work visa. Therefore, think carefully before jumping on the first job offer. Do not go to Japan just for the sake of going to Japan.

Is Hiroshima a safe choice for expats?

Japanese and foreigners alike often worry about this issue. But the truth is obvious! Healthy centenarians are there to prove that a peaceful life is absolutely possible in Hiroshima. Global companies that have been around for decades, such as Mazda, also show that Hiroshima is a safe place to live. If that were not the case, no company would take the risk of locating in an area where employees and families would be exposed to health hazards. The horrendous image of Hiroshima being a hazardous-nuked city is long gone! 

What about radioactivity? According to experts, there are no risks on that side either. If it is true that there is still some radioactivity, its levels have nothing to do with those found in 1945 and in the years that followed. Therefore, there is no reason to fear living there. The environmental challenges in Hiroshima are just the same as those in any other city in Japan or in the world.

Enjoy your new life in the Land of The Rising Sun

You will quickly notice that everyday life in Hiroshima is similar to that of any other city, with that same routine. Since your workdays may not allow you to experience the city as you would like, it is best to travel to Hiroshima a few weeks beforehand so as to discover the city and deal with the administrative side of things before you start your job. Once you get there, take the time to adjust. Make the most of Hiroshima's sports facilities to practice or discover new activities. Visit and join cultural clubs and associations and take advantage of your new life set. Your expatriation will go even smoother.

Useful links:

Discover the city

Official Guide to Hiroshima 

Hiroshima City website (in Japanese, multilingual translation possible)

Looking for a job (links in Japanese)


Seminars, jobs dating... job fairs in Hiroshima

GaijinPot Jobs;  Daijobs (general websites)

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.