Working Environment

Management Approach

Inaugural Year of Work Style Reform

In order to accelerate the pace of diversity management, the Sekisui Chemical Group has positioned 2018 as its inaugural year of promoting work style reform. After first putting in place a “Statement of Work Style Reform,” the Group has initiated three reform activities. In addition to correcting long working hours by improving productivity, energies are being directed toward the creation of an invigorating and rewarding workplace.

Sekisui Chemical Group’s Statement of Work Style Reform

To empower every employee to demonstrate their personal strengths, we will transform our current work style, which requires long hours to achieve results, into a productive work style that maximizes results in a limited time. To improve productivity, the Company will introduce various management resources and enable Group-wide employees and managers to unite their knowledge and experiences. By increasing job satisfaction through the improvement of quality of work and returning the results of reform to employees, we allow diverse human resources to excel.

Three Reforms

Improving productivity is essential to maximizing results in a limited time. Wit this in mind, the Sekisui Chemical Group will push forward the three “Business,” “HR system,” and “Work environment” reforms. Both management and employees will take up the challenge of promoting reform in line with the specific issues of each business.

<Three Reforms>

Work reforms: Identify the environment to be changed regardless of existing customs, and reform the work structure

HR system reforms: Reform the HR system to improve the growth and performance of each and every employee, and expand employment support

Work environment reforms: Reform the work environment by investing so that diverse employees can work in the optimal environment

Work Style Reform Achievement Targets

As work style reform is launched, we have set targets through to fiscal 2020, in which we take up the challenge of building a workplace culture that (1) Realizes total hours worked per year to be less than 2,000 hours (2) Allow employees to take at least 120 days off (3) Maintains a paid leave take-up rate of at least 50%.

Investment in Work Style Reform

Substantial capital investment and the introduction of systems are essential to continuously realizing the effects of business and work environment reforms. With this in mind, the Sekisui Chemical Group will invest 10 billion yen over the next two years in an effort to reduce working hours Group-wide.

Regulation of Long Working HoursWork Hour Shortening Committee

To create working environment that let each and every employee work to their fullest, the Sekisui Chemical Group engages in ongoing labor-management discussions about ways to shorten work hours, to encourage employees to utilize paid days off, and to introduce flexible work styles.
As part of the work style reform activities undertaken by Sekisui Chemical in fiscal year 2017, labor and management engaged in a series of discussions with the aim of determining how different workplaces can introduce reforms that are in tune with each working environment. Based on deliberations by the Work Hour Shortening Committee, Sekisui Chemical introduced a telecommuting system in July 2017. To date, 20 employees have participated in this system. With a view to expanding use of this system, steps are being taken to foster an appropriate workplace culture. This has resulted in initiatives, such as creating an environment that will permit raising awareness within labor unions and actively promoting use of the system.

Notifications of Major HR-Related ChangesMajor Changes with Significant Effects on Employees Are Implemented After Labor-Management Meetings

Based on the proposals submitted to the labor union and feedback received from each of the union branches, Sekisui Chemical has decided to move forward with HR system revisions and large-scale organizational reforms which will entail major changes and have significant effects on employees.
The labor agreement specifies that when employees belonging to the labor union are to be seconded or transferred, the labor union is notified at least one month prior to the change and the applicable employee’s willingness to accept their new position is confirmed prior to assignment.

Provision of a health improvement systemWe Are Working to Promote Health Management to Improve Our Employees’ Health.

The Sekisui Chemical Group strives to improve its employees’ physical and mental health based on the idea that employees are valuable resources entrusted to the group by society. The group also aims to incorporate concepts from health management to bolster organizational capabilities, improve the working environment, and increase productivity.

Initiative 1. Organizational Structure

In 2015, in cooperation with the health insurance association, the Group put people responsible for, and others in charge of, health management at 222 business sites, covering the entire Group. In addition, industrial physicians and industrial nursing professionals have been assigned to head offices and major factories.

Further, in 2017, the Health Promotion Office was established in Sekisui Chemical headquarters to promote better health within the entire Group. In 2017, to assist the people responsible for, and those in charge of carrying out, health management to improve workers’ health at business sites, explanatory sessions on the Group's health management policies were held in 21 venues throughout Japan. These sessions were attended by 189 individuals from 151 companies, including affiliates.

Initiative 2. Compliance with Laws and Regulations

To comply with health and safety-related laws and regulations, we conduct surveys of the health and safety management status at all business sites on an annual basis. By monitoring the implementation and improvement rates found in these surveys, we have contributed to reliable compliance.

Initiative 3. Identification and Resolution of Health Issues

Physical: We have published “Guidelines for Determining Work-Fitness for High Risk Employees” to help implement adequate health management for those who are found to be at high risk of health issues based on analyses of health checkup data. In cooperation with the health insurance association, we are also preventing conditions from becoming more severe for those employees who are at risk of lifestyle-related diseases.
Mental: We have produced good results from conducting stress management training sessions by telephone, with emphases on newly appointed managerial staff, overseas assignees, and mid-career hires, who undergo considerable changes in the environments in which they find themselves and are expected to actively engage in their new roles within short periods.

Initiative 4. Initiatives Geared Toward Work Style Reform

Since 2016, stress checks have been performed for all Sekisui Chemical Group employees every June. The purpose of these stress checks is to help employees understand their individual stress levels and prevent mental distress, as well as to create workplaces that facilitate work through the improvement of working environment by aggregating and analyzing individual stress values in each department (organizational checkups). Because of efforts to share the purpose and importance placed on these stress tests and to recommend that employees undergo the tests, the rate of undergoing the tests went up by around 10% in fiscal year 2017.

Initiative 5. Population Approaches (Initiatives Without Limits on the Intended Targets)

We have made it so that those who wish to may receive counseling or attend group education, such as listening-focused academy programs, run by in-house industrial counselors and external clinical psychologists.

Major Initiatives

Stress Check

The Sekisui Chemical Group strives to maximally leverage the stress checks that are provided for in law. Therefore, the Group performs these stress checks on all its employees, including those working at business sites with fewer than 50 employees. In fiscal year 2017, the Group made it a requirement to attend workshops on interpreting results in order to learn how to properly interpret population analyses; 98% of all business sites throughout the group participated.
Furthermore, as part of making population analyses mandatory, the Health Promotion Office partnered with Division Company HR departments to provide assistance to two companies with high overall health risks to create a model for offering assistance with improving the working environment at high-risk workplaces. The office also provided assistance to two companies, creating model business sites for the creation of “vibrant workplaces.”

Workshop on Accurately Interpreting Population Analyses

Stress Management Training

To allow employees to control their levels of stress on their own, the Group offers telephone-based stress management training (“Mindbics”) for newly appointed managerial staff, overseas assignees, and mid-career hires, who undergo considerable changes in the environments in which they find themselves and are expected to actively engage in their new roles within short periods. This training is based on cognitive-behavioral therapy, whose high degree of effectiveness has been proven. The use of telephone-based training allows employees to enroll in the sessions from home and while away on business trips and otherwise reduces the burden on enrollees and facilitates their participation in the training sessions even when they are busy. Each year, around 400 employees participate in the sessions, which are considered required training at the Sekisui Chemical Group.

Features of the Training Program

Telephone-Based Stress-Management Training that Can Be Held Even in Far-Flung Locations

External EvaluationsRecognized as a 2018 Certified Health and Productivity Management Organization

Sekisui Chemical was recognized for its company-wide efforts to resolve issues relating to the health of its employees and was certified*3 as a Health and Productivity Management Organization by both the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and the Nippon Kenko Kaigi*2, which runs the Health and Productivity Management Organization Recognition Program*1, for the second year in a row. Five Sekisui Chemical Group companies*4 actively engaged in health management also received this certification for their efforts.

Recognized as a 2018 Certified Health and Productivity Management Organization
  • *1
    The “Health and Productivity Management Organization Recognition Program” awards large companies, small- and medium-sized business, and other corporations that practice health management especially well through initiatives tailored to local health issues and initiatives for improving health promoted by the Nippon Kenko Kaigi.
  • *2
    The Nippon Kenko Kaigi is an operation organized to allow effective action to be taken based on comprehensive support from government for expanding the healthy lifespans and offering adequate medical treatment to all people in Japan, undertaken in partnership with private-sector organizations and in a country with a declining birth rate and a rapidly aging population.
  • *3
    Sekisui Chemical was recognized in the large enterprise category (“White 500”).
Companies receiving certification Name of company certified together with the Company described on the left
Sekisui Chemical Co., Ltd. Tokyo Sekisuiheim Co., Ltd.
Tokyo Sekisui Famis Co., Ltd.
Sekisui Medical Co., Ltd.
Ritto Sekisui Industry Co., Ltd.
Kyushu Sekisui Industry Co., Ltd.
  • From the list of corporations certified as 2018 Health and Productivity Management Organizations in the Large Enterprises (“White 500”) category
Performance Data

Amount of Overtime Work (Sekisui Chemical)

  FY2015 FY2016 FY2017
Monthly average per employee (hours) 17.5 19.2 19.9

Paid Vacation Day Utilization Rate (Sekisui Chemical)

  FY2015 FY2016 FY2017
Average per employee (%) (Excluding managers) 46.4 45.9 51.1

Average Number of Paid Vacation Days Taken

  FY2015 FY2016 FY2017
Average per employee (days) (Excluding managers) 8.8 8.7 9.6

Stress-Check Implementation Rate

  FY2016 FY2017
Implementation Rate(%) 72.0 81.9
  • Note: Scope: Companies that are members of the Sekisui Health Insurance Association (including some affiliates)