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Office Envy

19 Mins Ago

Pasona Group's Tokyo Office

The Ranch at Pasona's headquarters in Tokyo, Japan

Every weekday, the indoor enclosure welcomes around 100 visitors and plays host to training sessions and educational seminars designed to encourage more job applicants to consider a career in farming.

It’s an important part of the agenda at Japan’s second-largest staffing firm: The country’s agricultural workforce has shrunk by 40 percent in the past two decades.

“In Tokyo, having animals is not too common.”
-Scott Sato, president of Pasona

But it also has fringe benefits for the office’s 4,000 staff, Pasona President Scott Sato told CNBC’s “Office Envy” during a tour of the company’s Tokyo headquarters.

When employees aren’t busy at their desks, they can “take a break, see some animals, watch them eat,” Sato said, adding that exposure to animals can provide a novel and “soothing” experience in the otherwise highly urbanized city.

Pasona Grace, a beauty salon at Pasona's headquarters in Tokyo, Japan

“In Tokyo, having animals is not too common. There’s only two licences that were provided in Tokyo — one for the emperor in the palace and the other one for us,” noted Sato.

However, you don’t have to be an animal fanatic to work at Pasona. Otemachi-Bokujyo farm, which opened last year, is just one of the perks available to staff whose job functions range from sales to consulting and recruitment to outsourcing.

“As a HR company, our offices have always addressed ideas for an ideal working environment”
-Aiko Umehara, spokesperson for Pasona

The approximately 538,000 square-foot building houses a beauty salon and gym, complete with personal trainers, for employees who want some physical relaxation during their workday.

Meanwhile, those looking for more of a mental challenge can take themselves for an English lesson with native speakers in the global language salon, or test out their side-hustle in the company’s public start-up incubation lounge.

The Global Salon at Pasona's headquarters in Tokyo, Japan

Elsewhere in the building is a nursery, where staff can bring their children as soon as they’re ready to return to work. Pasona claims a 100 percent return rate for new mothers, which is important for a company with a 70 percent female workforce in a country that has one of the highest female participation rates in the world.

“We were one of the first companies in Japan to have an in-house nursery and this nursery allows women to get to work as soon as the kids are old enough to come in,” Sato told CNBC Make It.

“We think it’s very important for women to have a balance between work and home, so this allows them to bring their kids to work and to have time with their kids whenever they want.”

The Cafeteria at Pasona's headquarters in Tokyo, Japan.

Pasona’s vast offering is part of its mission to create a “social work life balance,” both for those it places in external jobs, as well as the 8,682-strong international workforce it employs directly.

“As a HR company, our offices have always addressed ideas for an ideal working environment,” Pasona spokesperson Aiko Umehara told CNBC Make It via email.

“That’s why we have animals, art work [throughout] the building, live musical performances during lunch, a nursery, gym, salon, etc.”

Fortunately, though, for staff who find themselves distracted by all the facilities on offer, late workers are rewarded with free evening meals in the 500-seat canteen.

— CNBC’s Uptin Saiidi contributed to this report.

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