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Social Report

Together with Our Employees

Diversity Promotion System

The Hitachi Chemical Group has made promoting diversity and inclusion one of its management strategies upon which to build a competitive edge. This is because we are aware that to be a company that offers value amid ever accelerating globalization in an ever-changing environment, it is essential that diverse human resources, regardless of their gender, nationality, age, disability, or sexual orientation, maximize their skills, ideas, and values, by bringing their skills together to create innovation and consistently produce solutions. By establishing a department at Hitachi Chemical’s Headquarters to exclusively promote diversity, the Group is actively engaging in various policies from the viewpoints including management stance and environment awareness.

In 2016, the diversity projects in which all Executive Officers participated by assuming the role of the owner were expanded in scope to include employees of foreign nationality and LGBT employees. The training program for managerial positions was updated into one designed for managing staff from diverse backgrounds. The program offers tips for managing employees with greater awareness of the issues faced by not only female staff, but also foreign-national employees, LGBT employees, and young employees, who are part of the so-called Millennium generation. Hitachi Chemical also held a seminar for human resources personnel in which an LGBT expert from the NPO Nijiiro Diversity was invited as a speaker. For foreign-national employees, a group interview was conducted to investigate their concerns, issues, and expectations for the Company.

Furthermore, the Group reviewed policies such as the reduction of long work hours and expanded use of working from home from a broader perspective and integrated them into the “Work Style Reform Project,” a company-wide project in which division heads and plant representatives participated, along with three executive officers. As part of this project, Hitachi Chemical conducted a work style workshop, in which all employees of Hitachi Chemical Group companies in Japan, who engage in back-office operations were encouraged to participate to discuss what they considered to be ideal work styles for themselves and their division.

The Group will continue to set up specific numerical goals pertaining to diversity promotion and announce them externally, so that each and every employee can attain a proper understanding of diversity promotion within the context of management strategy, and that they can reform their actions. The Group will continue to operate the plan–do–check–act (PDCA) cycle by measuring the effect of each program in a quantitative manner.

More Opportunities for Women

The Promotion of Participation by Women Act took effect in April 2016. At the Hitachi Chemical Group, Hitachi Chemical, Hitachi Chemical Automotive Products, Hitachi Chemical Techno Service, and Hitachi Chemical Electronics have disclosed required information by preparing and submitting their action plans.

In fiscal 2016, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE) selected Hitachi Chemical as a Nadeshiko Brand recipient, recognizing the Group’s outstanding efforts to promote the empowerment of women. The Group also received certification from the City of Osaka as a company playing a leading role in the empowerment of women.

Nadeshiko recipients group photo (courtesy of METI office)
Nadeshiko recipients group photo (courtesy of METI office)

Since 2016, Hitachi Chemical has set goals pertaining to: 1) the hiring ratio of newly graduated women in the engineering field, 2) the turnover rate of Sogoshoku (regular positions) male/female workers 3–7 years after entering the Company as a new graduate, 3) the proportion of female managerial positions, and 4) overtime hours, etc. The Company has implemented various measures centering around the diversity promotion project. Over 500 employees participated in the male manager seminar that focused on nurturing women subordinates and management. The follow-up survey was conducted six months after the seminar, and results showed a solid correlation toward the awareness/reform in their behaviors. The Company dispatches all women with Sogoshoku (regular positions) in their third year with the company to career design training that serves as a place for female employees to evaluate their careers early on. Furthermore, workshops held for female employees of the Hitachi Chemical Group gained a favorable review as a good place to find an immediate role model as well as establish a network between female employees. We also offer a cross-industry social event for women in Sogoshoku working in fields where women are still very rare, such as production engineering and sales. Through these types of activities, the Group sees a solid change in female employees regarding career awareness. In addition to the diversity awareness survey conducted in fiscal 2015, Hitachi Chemical in fiscal 2016 conducted individual interviews with over 350 employees including all Sogoshoku female workers and their superiors. These activities more clearly defined the challenges of promoting the empowerment of women, such as attitudes toward gender-based roles and working styles. Along with promoting awareness among mangers and women, the Company is also advancing a more flexible and friendly working environment, including a flextime system without setting core time and a telecommuting system with no limit on reasons or days. In the future, the Company aims to expand this system to the entire Hitachi Chemical Group.

Furthermore, Hitachi Chemical began recruiting more women for Sogoshoku (regular positions) in fiscal 2005. The Company has implemented measures to provide women in the engineering field—who would be directly responsible for innovation—with a concrete image of what it would be like to work at Hitachi Chemical. Such measures include having female employees share the attraction of working for a B-to-B company and their views on career when going through various life events on the company website, during office tours, and in career seminars targeting female students. As a result, the hiring ratio of newly graduated women in the engineering field rose to almost 30% for fiscal 2017, up from 11% in fiscal 2015. In addition, in fiscal 2016, women accounted for 8% of Sogoshoku, but the rate goes up to 18% for those in their 20s and 30s. The number of female managerial positions also more than quadrupled from fiscal 2011, accounting for over 3%. Hitachi Chemical will continue to diversify the human resources pool through its employment and training practices to ensure that the Company’s management policies reflect diverse values and viewpoints as more women employees engage in new product development and formulation of medium- to long-term management strategy of the Hitachi Chemical Group.

Number of Female Managerial Positions
FY 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Managerial positions
(Manager or higher)
Number of female 10 13 14 22 csr_check25
Proportion of female (%) 1.8 1.9 2.0 2.7 csr_check3.1
Assistant manager
(Assistant managers)
Number of female 11 15 21 18 csr_check18
Proportion of female (%) 2.2 2.6 3.8 2.9 csr_check2.6

Note: Values for the Company alone.

Ratios of basic salary and total remuneration of female employees to those of male employees (in managerial positions only)
Basic salary ratio (female/male) Total remuneration ratio (female/male)
96.4% 94.1%

* Male and female employees are compensated equally and the differences are accounted for by age and rank distributions.

A diversity-promotion project event

Hiring of Foreign Nationals

Hitachi Chemical hires and offers equal employment terms and conditions to all people of all nationalities.

The Company actively participates in career forums for foreign students held in Japan and overseas to obtain skilled human resources. Foreign nationals accounted for approximately 7% of the Company’s new recruits in fiscal 2016. To keep up with rapid globalization of the business environment, the Company will continue actively hiring a diverse range of talents.

In cases where foreign nationals need work permits or employment visas to work for the Company, the Company provides the necessary support with documentation, etc.

Additionally, the Hitachi Chemical Group is committed to employee development regardless of nationality, offering equal training opportunities and performance evaluations.

Promoting Employment of Disabled People

The Hitachi Chemical Group provides opportunities for people with disabilities to participate in society by expanding the range of occupations available to employees with disabilities and improving facilities for them.

In fiscal 2016, employees with disabilities accounted for 2.45% on a domestic consolidated basis (targeting 13 companies with over 50 employees) and 2.25% on a non-consolidated basis. Both of these ratios exceeded the Japanese legal requirement. We remain committed to help people with disabilities find employment at Group companies, and aim to enhance information sharing in this regard.

Employment Ratio of Disabled People (%)
FY 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Japan, consolidated 2.18 2.27 2.39 2.44 2.45
Non-consolidated 2.02 2.06 2.09 2.16 2.25

Promoting Wider Opportunities for Re-employed Workers

In 2001, Hitachi Chemical established a Senior Employment System designed to offer extended employment to those over 60 years of age. It provides opportunities to continue applying their substantial experience and skills after reaching retirement age, and addresses changing social conditions such as the falling birth rate, aging population, and raising the age for receiving pensions, giving people the option to continue working until they receive their pensions.

Under the system, a person is reemployed if he/she wishes at the mandatory retirement age of 60 and agrees to the conditions set out by the Company. Re-employed employees may continue working until the age of 65 in accordance with the Employment for Senior Citizens Law. As of the end of March 2017, 158 employees were employed under this system.

Initiative Toward Stabilizing the Workforce

At Hitachi Chemical, we provide fair and impartial personnel assessment, career development support, and various opportunities for dialogue with the aim of stabilizing our workforce.

Although the gap is closing, at Hitachi Chemical the turnover rate of women in Sogoshoku (regular positions) is still high when compared to men. The difference in turnover rates is attributed to such factors as the lack of role models due to a small number of women in management positions, the lack of communication with their superiors, and the insufficient educational opportunities needed for career advancement of women in Sogoshoku.

The Company has implemented various measures that support the career development of women in Sogoshoku to stabilize the female workforce. One such measure is career training for women in Sogoshoku being implemented according to the post, and the training is serving as an opportunity for women to reflect on their career and think about their future. Furthermore, the Company has set up the opportunity for women to be able to discuss their mid-term careers with their superior. In addition, under the policy that the foundation of career development is built through a growth seen in daily work, the female employees can decide their quarterly/annual goals under mutual agreement with their superior.

Aside from this, to effectively execute the career support of female employees, the Company has also implemented coaching to reform the awareness of male managers by incorporating communication exercises that are guided by an instructor. The Company believes that by respecting the background and career design of each individual, these initiatives will contribute toward the stabilization of not only female employees, but also all employees.

Inspiring the Diversity Mindset

Hitachi Chemical positions diversity as a management strategy to give us a competitive edge and communicates its initiatives inside and outside the Company to nurture a diversity mindset.

In fiscal 2016, Hitachi Chemical joined the IkuBoss Alliance to develop superiors who are able to train their staff and achieve organizational goals while respecting the personal lives of their staff and enjoying life themselves. Other changes include the presence of managers who are women, foreign nationals, or persons with disabilities, as well as the “free address” movement that began at not only the head office, but also the Development Division. Based on the results of the campaign for childcare leave for male employees undertaken in fiscal 2015, Hitachi Chemical now offers five days of paid leave for childcare. Along with spousal maternity leave, the Company strives to create a work environment that facilitates men’s participation in childcare. In fiscal 2016, Hitachi Chemical introduced a new flexible work hours system. Used by not only employees but also executive officers, the system is contributing to the extensive use of the work-from-home system that imposes no restrictions in terms of reason or number of days.

Furthermore, at the work style workshop participated in by office workers across the Group, participants made over 700 proposals for achieving an “ideal work style.” When the President of Hitachi Chemical discussed the importance of work style reform in his own words on his intranet message site on two occasions, the site was accessed over 10,000 times and was flooded with comments by employees. This indicated the high level of interest in work style reform among senior executives and employees alike, and resulted in the establishment of an organization exclusively dedicated to work style reform for fiscal 2017.

Based on ideas that are adaptable and free from conventional thinking, the Company will promote a workplace that facilitates innovation by steering its way to a new work style.

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