Updated June 3, 2024

Node.js in Japan - Language Guide

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Japan Dev Team

Japan Dev contributor

Created by Ryan Dahl in 2009, Node.js has become a popular choice for developers due to its non-blocking, event-driven architecture. The technology, or framework, is especially known for the efficiency of its JavaScript runtime.

Over the years, Node.js has also found a strong following in Japan, although its adoption initially lagged behind the US. So, using real numbers and data, let’s explore the current landscape of Node.js development in the country and see just how popular it is.

I’ll also talk about the career prospects for Node.js developers and highlight a few companies that openly use Node.js in their daily operations.

And if you’re looking for a job here, I’ll share my tips on finding Node.js jobs in Japan as well. 

Let’s first see how popular Node.js is in Japan.

No need to beat around the bush, Node.js is a very popular language in Japan.

Yes, its adoption may have started a bit late here, but as it’s been taking the JavaScript world by storm for quite some time now, it has finally caught on in recent years and has quickly climbed in popularity.

Today, it may not exactly be the number one most sought-after skill, but according to our findings, it’s considerably popular in Japan. 

Since we have been gathering quite a bit of data over the years from countless job listings, we've been able to figure out just how frequently Node.js pops up on the job listings featured on our job board.

According to our data, Node.js is currently the 12th most popular programming language or framework in Japan. Here’s a full list with all of the other popular languages and frameworks:

Popularity Rank

Programming Language

Median Salary

#1

Python

¥9.8 million

#2

Java

¥8.6 million

#3

Go

¥10.3 million

#4

Javascript

¥8.6 million

#5

C++

¥9.3 million

#6

Typescript

¥9 million

#7

Kotlin

¥9.1 million

#8

Ruby

¥9.2 million

#9

PHP

¥8.7 million

#10

Swift

¥8.7 million

#11

React

¥9 million

#12

Node.js

¥8.5 million

#13

R

¥10.1 million

#14

Scala

¥10.86 million

#15

Vue.js

¥8.7 million

#16

Objective-C

¥7.2 million

#17

Rust

¥8.5 million

As you can see, the language ranks right behind other big names like React and PHP.  This is mainly because it’s especially common among cutting-edge startups nowadays.

So, if it’s among our top programming technologies list, you may be asking how well it pays to be a Node.js developer in Japan. Let’s get into it.

How Is Node.js Used in Japan?

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Despite ranking as the 12th most popular technology, Node.js is a JavaScript runtime environment, making its use essentially tied to JavaScript development. 

Besides, JavaScript is the 4th most popular language in Japan according to our list, and a vast majority of companies in Japan running JavaScript on their servers also use Node.js. This is a major reason why the technology is deemed so popular here.

Generally, Node.js is primarily used to run server-side (backend) JavaScript code. 

Before it came out, JavaScript was mostly used for front-end development, but the emergence of Node.js has made it possible to use it efficiently in server-side applications as well, which is a partial reason why it’s especially catching on among cutting-edge startups. 

So, if it’s so popular, how well does a Node.js job pay in Japan? Let’s find out.

Node.js Salaries in Japan: How Much Do Node.js Developers Earn?

Before discussing salaries and benefits, you should know that tech companies in Japan can be categorized into three distinct types. 

First, we have traditional Japanese companies that tend to stick with the old ways, have the lower pay, and offer little extra benefits. Even taking sick days might become an issue at these companies, as it’s not a legal requirement in Japan.

However, the other two types of companies, which are Japanese companies with modern practices that mainly comprise startups and international companies with operations in Japan, pay considerably more and offer the best benefits.

As I mentioned, currently, Node.js is mostly popular among startups and cutting-edge companies, which means that it’s in a good spot in terms of pay. Even our data suggest that Node.js developers earn an annual median salary of ¥8.5M in Japan, which is close to the average salaries of Java and JavaScript, both of which rank in the top five.

So, what companies are using Node.js in practice? I’ll share a few examples.

Top Companies Using Node.js in Japan

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Being the 12th most popular technology on our list, Node.js is used by companies in various industries in Japan. Naturally, many companies on our job board use it as well, so let’s look at a noteworthy few.

  • Cogent Labs: A cutting-edge, productivity-focused startup, Cogent Labs utilizes the power of AI to provide DX and document processing software as a service. The company hires Node.js engineers.

  • Fujitsu Launchpad: This Tokyo-based startup was launched in 2022 with a mission to build brilliant new tech ventures from the ground up. Fujitsu Launchpad uses Node.js to power their venture incubation operations, and they’re currently hiring new Node.js programmers to expand their skillful team.

  • Kraken Technologies: Kraken Technologies is a company that promotes the use and implementation of green energy, and is part of the Octopus Energy Group from the UK. The company uses Node.js to deliver its reusable energy solutions.

  • Scene: A startup that brings the manufacturing industry and tech together, Scene creates applications for 3D design and tracking design processes. The company’s use of Node.js allows a smoother and faster development experience.

  • NearMe: A ride-sharing company on a mission to reduce waste in society, NearMe offers an app that provides rides, airport transfers, and schedules drop-offs. The company is another known user of Node.js.

All the above are great, innovative businesses in their respective fields, but there are many more companies out there using Node.js in Japan. So, let’s see how you can find them.

Finding Node.js Jobs in Japan: A Few Tips

For starters, you want to check our Node.js jobs page frequently. Here at Japan Dev, we go through a detailed process of vetting companies and only feature the ones with the best, modern practices. We update our jobs regularly too, so I recommend checking back every once in a while.

Alternatively, you can also find Node.js jobs by joining the community here. This may seem like a less direct route, but attending conferences, meetups, or workshops is a great way to network organically, which can open up unexpected opportunities. 

I have a guide to Japan’s best tech conferences, but you can also check out my regional tech events guides for Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and Fukuoka.

Other than attending events, another way to join the Node.js community in Japan is to contribute to open-source projects. If you’re new to the open-source space, my guide to Japan’s open-source community is a great resource for getting started.

Finally, if you’ve yet to learn Node.js and have decided to do so after reading about the career prospects I mentioned here, you may be looking for a fast track to become proficient and get hired. For this, I recommend checking out my best coding bootcamps in Tokyo guide, where I also answered some of your burning questions on the topic.

Concluding Words on Node.js in Japan

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To sum things up and conclude our guide to Node.js in Japan – if you’re looking for a job as a developer here, learning Node.js is worth your time.

It may not be topping the charts, but it certainly has its use cases, as well as many loyal subscribers in Japan’s tech landscape. After all, our findings have shown that:

  • Node.js is the 12th most popular programming language or technology in Japan

  • The average annual salary of a Node.js developer in Japan is ¥8.5M

  • Node.js is most commonly used to run server-side JavaScript code, and nearly all companies using JavaScript and TypeScript use it

So, if you have Node.js experience, rest assured you’ll find a good job to your liking here. Be sure to check our Node.js jobs page frequently, and if you’re looking for a general guide on finding a job in Japan, read my post on finding a job as a software developer in Japan after this.

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Japan Dev Team

This post was written by our Japan Dev editorial team.