Language Culture at Mercari
At Mercari, we have a diverse workforce with many different backgrounds. We have a variety of native languages, but Japanese and English are most commonly used in our work. The need to communicate in English is increasing, and more and more of our members are learning English every year. We offer a wide range of language learning programs to help our members perform at their best, tailored to our business needs. In addition to English, we also offer a Japanese language learning program to help non-native Japanese speakers feel more comfortable living and working in Japan.
Another unique feature is our Yasashii (Easy and Kind) Communication program. This is a program that focuses on the essence of communication, where people can come together and understand each other’s challenges, rather than expecting everyone to be able to speak perfect English or Japanese. We believe that it is an important value of our language culture that we never lose sight of the essence of understanding each other, rather than just providing language education and support.
It’s about empathy, understanding each others’ challenges and building bridges to support communication.
Language Level Criteria
We use three language levels in our recruitment process based on the CEFR(*): Basic (CEFR – A2), Independent (CEFR – B2), and Proficient (CEFR – C1).
|Level||Definition||Can-Do Statements for English and Japanese|
(CEFR – A2)
|Can communicate basic information in your area of expertise with support/accommodation from the other party||
(CEFR – B2)
|Can exchange complex information in your area of expertise with limited support/accommodation from the other party||
(CEFR – C1)
|Can independently exchange complex information inside and outside your area of expertise without support/accommodation from the other party||
*Clickherefor more information about CEFR (External Link: Council of Europe)
Language Learning Programs
With its dedicated in-house Language Education Team (LET), Mercari offers both English and Japanese programs to support our members in their learning.
Japanese Learning Program
|Japanese Group Lesson
|This is an original lesson program that teaches Japanese through situations that members of the Mercari group often encounter inside and outside the company. The program was developed by observing the behavior and needs of members in order to acquire the skills needed to live in Japan and communicate effectively with other members. One of the features of this program is that learners can quickly acquire conversational skills that they can actually use. This course is designed for members with Japanese CEFR – Pre-A1 to A2.|
|Japanese Coaching Program
|This is an original language coaching program that aims to help Merpay members who need Japanese for their work to reach Japanese CEFR – B2 or higher. The program focuses on improving speaking skills, and the participating members set their own goals as well as create and implement their own learning plans.|
English Learning Program
|English Program||This program aims to help members who need English for their work reach CEFR-B2. The program is being implemented to enable members to communicate effectively and become globally active talent at Mercari. The target for this program are members who are B1 and below, who are assigned to a position for which English education is prioritized, and who can commit to studying 5 or more hours per week.|
|Independent Speaking Program||This is an original program designed to help English learners of B1 and above improve their English speaking skills independently. The program is designed to support employees develop long-term study habits by planning and implementing plans independently without relying on a trainer or coach. The program targets members who have achieved CEFR – B1 or above in English, and they are expected to actively seek feedback from the trainer and share information with other learners.|
Online English Conversation
|Employees can take English conversation lessons anytime, anywhere from their computer, smartphone or tablet through this external service. All members working in the Mercari group are eligible for this service.|
English & Japanese Program
|Yasashii (Easy and Kind) Communication||This is an original training program that aims to help participants learn what makes English difficult for English learners as well as what parts of Japanese are difficult for Japanese learners, with the goal of finding new ways of communicating that are easier to understand. The aim is to create an inclusive communication environment where everyone can participate in discussions and where language is not a barrier to expressing one’s own opinions and understanding the opinions of others. We do not expect participants to be able to speak perfect English or Japanese, but rather to value the essence of communication, which is to understand each other, and to find communication best practices. By sharing the struggles and difficulties of language learning, we can and deepen mutual understanding. The target for this training is teams that have English/Japanese learners and native speakers.|
|Mercari English /
Japanese Communication Test
|These are the English and Japanese speaking tests for members working in the Mercari group. The tests are designed to measure speaking ability, which is the key focus at Mercari. The tests are scored based on the CEFR assessment method used in many languages. Please note that the tests are applicable to members whose native language is not English and Japanese, respectively.|
|English Study /
Japanese Study Consultation
|We have a contact point where you can consult with LET about language learning methods, including how to plan your studies and set goals. We do this in order to provide an effective approach to individual learning goals and issues. The consultation is provided by a member who specializes in language education. As a result, LET is able to provide suggestions on language learning methods based on an understanding of the individual team environment and work content. All members are eligible for this program.|
|Native English /
|These services provide proofreading and editing of materials used in presentations or other external-facing events. The feedback ensures that the information is conveyed correctly to the audience. This service is open to all members in the group.|
|Chat Lunch (currently on hold)||This is a program where Mercari members can practice the language they are learning over a meal. The program provides an opportunity to practice in a stress-free environment as a supplement to English and Japanese lessons. All members are eligible for this program.|
Mercari’s Japanese/English vocabulary list for engineers
LET created a list of vocabulary words frequently used by engineers after observing meetings in the company. It’s a great study tool for both Japanese and English learners to use thanks to the example sentences that show how the words are used in context.
Voice of Members
How a Mercari EM who says “I was not good at English” joined a language learning program and gained confidence
When regular vocabulary books are not enough: Engineer Vocabulary List for Mercari & Merpay
Language Education Team Activities
Using Yasashii (Easy & Kind) Tips to Communicate Better while Working From Home
Mercari’s unique language support: Creating inclusive communication where Japanese speakers and English speakers can meet halfway