In-house language classes (社内語学クラスについて)
At e-Jan, we have a unique language class system which we are proud of. We have several language teachers and they come to the office on certain weekdays, teach a foreign language one-to-one, and each employee attends classes on a weekly basis during working hours.
Many companies reimburse a portion of the language school fee. However, we decided to have in-house classes instead. The reimbursement fee can go directly to the teachers instead of language schools, and companies can avoid paying high costs, so both teachers and the company benefit. On top of that, it is a big hassle for the student to select and arrange to go to an outside school, so it lowers the hurdle to learn a foreign language.
We started the system in May 2013, with two English teachers. After that, because of our growing globalization activities, we hired many non-Japanese employees. Now we have in-house Chinese and Japanese classes, too. Most employees take one or two classes a week, and in my case, I take an English class and a Chinese class each week.
There were many, so to say, byproducts from the in-house class system, other than employees improving their language skills. The system enables: 1) Mutual cultural experiences in private lives. 2) Understanding others from different cultural backgrounds better. 3) A break from daily tasks. 4) Stimulation to different parts of the brain and functions as refreshment. 5) Access to business terminologies through native speakers. 6) The opportunity for some teachers to become official employees. 7) Access talented people from a wider range of backgrounds, including non-Japanese speakers.
Although there is extra administrative work required to run this system, the benefits outgrow the extra work. Now we are proud to have been able to become a global player quite rapidly, and it continues to evolve on a daily basis.
Here is a comment from my ma'am teacher who kindly checked and fixed my essay yeseterday.
I will admit that I feel proud to tell people who I meet for the first time that "I'm an in-house English teacher at a Japanese IT company". I also tell them that the people are great, the environment is relaxed, friendly and flexible and that the people at the top really care about their staff. How's that for PR? Now all I need is to be able to talk IT and I can do e-Jan's PR! Anyway, the essay was great- clearly communicated and information organized nicely. As usual, we made it sound smoother (more concise), not too formal and not too casual. I'm very happy to contribute to e-Jan's growth, and I hope to be a part of it as long as possible.