Temps in Prime Time

Haruko Ohmae has the sort of job skills that should get her hired immediately. She can program a computer, chop sushi, speak Russian, operate heavy equipment and (most important) pour tea. But Haruko doesn't have a full-time job. She's a part-timer—and the main character in the new hit Japanese TV show Haken no Hinkaku, which roughly translates as "the dignity of temp workers." Japan may once have enshrined lifetime corporate employment, but today nearly a third of its workforce is made up of part-timers like Haruko, as companies that cut payrolls during the recession years have been slow to add full-time...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!