[MUSAI] Localization Recruiting Ep3. How to recruit localization staff for the Korean language

2020-10-07

 

If you are planning to launch your game globally, no matter what kind of product it is, you know it needs a localization service. However, the problem is there are too many localization companies and options. You may find yourself wondering ‘how do I choose the best agencies?’ or ‘Isn’t there any other way beyond working with agencies?’

 

For those who may have the questions, we have shared the tips for the localization recruitment ranging from translators (Ep1. Who is the best for the draft translation of gaming contents? http://blog.musaistudio.com/musai-who-is-the-best-for-the-draft-translation-of-gaming-contents) to multi-languages vendors (Ep2. How to find the best localization vendors for your game http://blog.musaistudio.com/musai-localization-recruiting-ep-2-how-to-find-the-best-localization-vendors-for-your-game) in the previous articles.

 

Lastly, the topic in today’s article is for the global localization companies seeking for the Korean language resources. We will discuss what to be considered and how to recruit when you need a translation resource for the Korean language in detail.

 

Part 1. What do I have to know about the Korean localization industry?

Narrow market, not enough good resources same as the global L10n market

It seems a good way to start to understand the overall Korean localization industry before getting to the point. As you know, the scale of the localization industry worldwide is small compared to other industries. Likewise, the Korean localization market is quite narrow and it means professional translation recourses are not many either.

Furthermore, the frequent turnover in staff is a chronical issue. The staff who have careers in 2 or 3 years try to move to a new job, looking for better conditions and many of new staff less than a year tend to change their career into the different field.

The frequent amendment of the Korean labor law

There is one more thing you should know about the Korean market – the change of the labor law. The labor law in Korea is changed frequently so that you have to keep your eyes on it.

The Korean government has tried hard to improve the labor environment. As a result, the policies to protect the rights of employees have been increased such as improvement of the minimum wage, guarantee of the retirement allowance for contractors, measurement of the paid weekly holidays, etc.

Of course, these efforts are very encouraging in terms of the improvement of the labor market in Korea. The point is, as for CxO levels running a business in Korea and hiring Korean, it’s recommended to follow up closely the changes of the Korean labor law since they will have an huge influence on the overall revenue of the business as well as the labor cost per person and productivity.  

As you might know, the selling price is getting down under the tough competition among the localization agencies, on the other hand, the hourly rate of both internal and external resources is getting increased. The Korean L10n market has the same issue similarly to the global market.

The way of Koreans to deal with a reference check

If you would like to conduct a reference check, you should be aware of the unique way of Koreans dealing with it. The reference check in the Korean job market has been conducted more often than before when hiring experienced resources. However, most of Korean tend to avoid giving a negative feedback unless there are serious problems such as criminal or moral issues.

Therefore, if you want to gain more accurate information, you should categorize your questions such as adaptability, work skills, capability, etc. and make questions in detail.

 

Part 2. Let’s find out how to approach to the Korean job market!

 

  1. Human Network

When you know someone being related to the localization industry, you can ask if they have possible candidates to recommend. Connections and human network can be a good way to start before officially opening the recruitment, especially seeking for experienced staff.

 

  1. Local Recruiting Platform

Next, you can post a job description in the local recruiting platform and conduct the recruitment process officially. There are several typical recruiting platforms with high traffic in Korean job market. For examples:

These recruiting platforms can attract a large number of various applicants, but it should be considered that it will take much time to proceed the procedure for evaluation including reviewing the resume and conducting the examination.

[Photo 1] Korean recruiting platform ‘JOBKOREA’ (Source: jobkorea.co.kr)

 

  1. Recruiting Agency

If you are looking for a senior or management level, you can take advantage of recruitment firms. However, there are not many Korean recruitment agencies specialized in the localization industry.

 

  1. HR Exhibitions

It’s true that the localization industry in Korea is not preferred among job candidates to the other field, so successful recruitment from HR exhibitions may be hard to be expected. However, it can be a meaningful idea to participate in job fairs in a manner of promotion for the company.

 

  1. Job board in Universities

This is a smarter choice than using a recruiting platform. When you want someone about to graduate or fresh out of university for a new staff or intern position, consider using a job board in universities. You can advertise your company and post a job description on the bulletin board of main HR office or each college. To be specific, you can go for a job board by each major such as college of English, Chinese, and Japanese, and even Korean if the target language you are looking for is Korean.

 

  1. Online Community

First, there are online communities offering a space to share information and career advice related to the localization industry from translation to voiceover. For example, ‘Naver.com’ or ‘Daum.net’, famous portal sites in Korea, have big communities such as ‘Translation Love’ http://cafe.daum.net/translation and you can either look through possible candidates or write a job posting.

[Photo 2] ‘Translation Love’, the Korean online community about the translation field (Source: cafe.daum.net/translation)

In the case you want someone for a certain game, forums and online communities of the game can be useful. However, it is recommended to use the communities only to find a tester or someone who can give advice. It’s hard to find possible candidates qualified for a professional translator and reviewer.

 

  1. Merge & Acquisitions

In terms of the strategical method, you can consider merge & acquisitions. It has been known as the most common and fastest way when global MLVs need a office in Korea. However, the agreement regarding M&A conditions such as corporate valuation, debt acquisition, etc. between companies is challenging so it fails to ignite often.

 

  1. Government Support

In the case of international enterprises, it is suggested to apply to the Korean governmental programs targeting foreign companies and gain supports for the business. Various policies are carried out by both central and local governments of Korea to attract foreign companies in the purpose of job creation, even though it’s not directly related to the recruitment.

Besides, there is a diversity of supporting programs for domestic companies depends on the type of recruitment. For instance, there are different programs run by each authority according to the employment type or the ages of applicants, so constant monitoring and applying will lead to the reduction of the labor expense.

‘WelCon’, Content Export Marketing Platform (Source: welcon.kocca.kr)

 

As we mentioned above, the localization industry has a smaller scale than other industry so the established guide or record to work from rarely exist. If you have craved for them for a while, hope this article could give you a brief snippet of the Korean localization market.  

 

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