Updated May 29, 2024

Go in Japan – Language Guide


Japan Dev Team

Japan Dev contributor

Go, or Golang, is a programming language developed by Google in 2007. It has since carved a niche for itself globally due to its efficiency, simplicity, and robust support for concurrent programming.

If you’ve ever gone on a job hunt in Japan, you’ve probably noticed that Go is among the required, or at least favored, languages by many companies here.

This is not surprising, as Go has garnered significant traction among developers and technology companies in Japan in recent years, and it’s among the top three most popular programming languages in the country today.

So, if you want to learn more about the opportunities that being proficient in Go can bring, as well as where Go stands in Japan’s software landscape, read on.

In this post, I’ll explain how companies utilize Go and how much you can earn by getting a job as a Go engineer. I’ll also feature some of the most renowned domestic and international companies that use Go in their day-to-day operations.

Let’s first see how Go ranks among the programming languages used in Japan.

The Popularity of Go Programming Language in Japan

As I said, Go is wildly popular in Japan. 

In fact, it ranks in the third spot among the most used programming languages in the country. 

You can see how it ranks compared to some other languages in the table we’ve prepared below:

Popularity Rank

Programming Language

Median Salary



¥9.8 million



¥8.6 million



¥10.3 million



¥8.6 million



¥9.3 million



¥9 million



¥9.1 million



¥9.2 million



¥8.7 million



¥8.7 million



¥9 million



¥8.5 million



¥10.1 million



¥10.86 million



¥8.7 million



¥7.2 million

At Japan Dev, we’ve gathered plenty of company data over the years, which helped us determine which programming languages are the most popular. This is our analysis based on our current findings.

So, not only does the table above show that Golang is used heavily in Japan, but it’s also the third most popular language on our job board. So, engineers proficient in Go should generally have an easier time finding developer/IT jobs in Japan.

This wasn’t always the case, however, as Go is a fairly new language, having been created only in 2007, and its popularity in Japan is even more recent. 

This may be all thanks to smaller, younger companies and startups in the country adopting the language. That said, bigger companies have also been switching to Go, or they at least utilize it in some way in their day-to-day operations. 

So, it looks like Go is more than a fad but rather a staple in Japan's software development landscape.

That said, the question of how companies utilize Golang remains, so let’s cover that next.


Go in Practice: How Is Golang Used in Japan?

As you can tell by the table we shared above, Go is one of the most useful languages you can learn if you’re on a job hunt as a software developer in Japan. So, how exactly is it used?

According to the data we gathered over the years, Go is most popular as a backend or server-side language to support apps and web services. 

In addition to the backend use, some companies also use Golang for command-line tools.

As the language was invented by Google, many companies that use Google Cloud Platform (GCP) also use Go. 

Golang Salaries in Japan: How Much Do Go Programmers Earn?

According to our data, the median salary for Go Developer positions at Japan Dev is ¥10.3 million.

That being said, if you’re an engineer with at least some experience, you can either get grossly underpaid or get paid rather handsomely, depending on the type of company you go for. 

What you need to know about Japan’s IT industry is that companies are generally categorized under three types according to their salary ranges. 

The first category is the domestic companies that are on the more traditional side. These tend to offer average or below average salaries and are on the lower end of the salary spectrum.

In the second category are Japanese companies that have Western practices and adopted a workstyle that resembles the usual “tech office” that comes to mind today. These companies also tend to operate mostly in English to accommodate today’s globalized hiring practices and offer good salaries.

The third and final category refers to the large international companies operating in Japan. Think Google, Facebook, or any other FAANG company I talked about in this article. These, of course, have the best salaries and offer great benefits.

Our data shows that the companies that currently hire Go engineers are in the second and third categories, meaning they’re usually modern, global-minded Japanese tech companies or the large, international ones that offer big salaries. 

So, not only do Go developers here work better jobs in a more relaxed environment that allows more autonomy but they also get paid more overall.


Top Companies Using Golang in Japan

On our job board at Japan Dev, we have many open job positions for Go engineers, and many companies on our database offer jobs that require Go proficiency. 

A simple scroll through our Go jobs in Japan page will show you the sheer number of companies using it, and this is just what we have on our database. Among these are some noteworthy companies, like Mercari, Japan’s first unicorn startup company. 

On their frequently updated blog, Mercari constantly talks about using Golang, the challenges and the advantages it brings, and how it can be utilized in certain ways. 

In fact, Mercari follows Golang development closely and even sends company engineers to attend the GopherCon, the global Golang conference (see my post on tech conferences in Japan). 

Mercari isn’t the only noteworthy company that uses Go, of course. Some other notable companies that use it include:

While this is all you need to know about Go in Japan at first glance, our ultimate goal at Japan Dev is to help people find their dream jobs. So, before I conclude, I’d like to share a few tips for finding Go jobs in Japan. 

Tips For Finding a Go Job in Japan

One of the best things you can do to find jobs as a Go programmer is to frequently check our Go jobs page. We update our job board with new offers quite often, and the companies you’ll find on there are personally vetted by our team and offer the best work environments in the industry.

Other than that, you can join the Go community in Japan and attend events and meetups. For instance, Go Conference is a great place to start, as it’s held annually in English and Japanese, welcoming Go programmers of all levels, including beginners. 

You can also check out my posts on Tokyo tech meetups, Kansai region (Osaka and Kyoto) tech communities, and Fukuoka tech meetups to find even more events to attend.

Finally, another thing you can do to get your work and name out there and increase your chances of getting hired as a Go engineer is to contribute to open-source projects. Luckily, I also have a guide to Japan’s open-source community you can head on over to learn where to start.

Great Opportunities Galore: Final Word on Golang in Japan


As you can tell by now, Go is one of the most useful languages to learn if you’re looking for an engineering job in Japan.

To go over what we’ve covered:


  • Go ranks as the third most popular programming language in Japan

  • The median salary for jobs requiring Go is 10.3 million JPY annually

  • Go is most often utilized in backend development or as a server-side language to support web apps and services in Japan

  • Jobs that hire Go engineers tend to be on the higher side of the salary scale

If you want to get into Go, you can start by finding Go communities and events. You can also consider contributing to open-source projects to increase your chances of finding a Go job. 

While this is all we have on Golang, if you want to learn more about developer jobs in Japan and wonder what the average salaries are like, head over to my software developer salary guide that we’ve updated for 2024.


Japan Dev Team

This post was written by our Japan Dev editorial team.