Quality Issues

Basic Concept

We, SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group, consider CS & Quality as our central concept of management and will consistently promote innovation to maintain the quality of products throughout all of our business activities, continuously provide value (goods and services) that meets customer expectations, strive to constantly become the first choice of customers, and develop and grow with the customer over the long time. In order to achieve these established goals, we are prioritizing the need to strengthen basic quality while adhering strictly to quality compliance based on the understanding that manufacturing at the frontline underpins quality.

Preventing Defects, Strengthening Daily Management, and Reducing Quality Irregularities

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group considers customer feedback as a precious management resource and strives to promote innovation in the quality of products, the quality of people and the quality of systems based on the motto: We consider customer feedback as the beginning of our manufacturing. Furthermore, we contribute to the realization of a safe and affluent society by continuously providing our customers and their communities with new value.
SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group emphasizes quality compliance. By continuously working to reinforce the foundation that supports quality by preventing the occurrence of defects and strengthening daily management, we are developing a culture that prioritizes quality while eliminating irregularities. Surmising that quality irregularities can occur as a result of the insufficient allocation of resources in such areas as quality and organizational systems, as well as various types of both external and internal pressure, the Group set about eradicating the root causes of risk. To this end, we have engaged in efforts to revise organizational systems, digitalize and reinforce quality data, provide quality compliance training, and strengthen reviews of new business from 2020.

CS & Quality Current Medium-term Plan

  • 15-04

Roadmap for CS & Quality Management Initiatives


Under the current Medium-term Management Plan, we set zero occurrences of major quality issues as a KPI and promoted quality activities with the goal of preventing or minimizing the impact of serious incidents on corporate value.
While there were no instances that could be categorized as Group-wide serious incidents, there were two major quality issues as defined by individual divisional company standards in fiscal 2022. The results of the major implementation measures are as follows.

Major Implementation Measures Management Indicators Current Medium-term Management Plan Final Fiscal Year (FY2022) Targets Fiscal 2022 Results
Preventing the Occurrence of Serious Quality-related Problems The rate of application of development risk prevention methods (number of themes for implementation of methods to prevent development risk/number of development themes)* 100% 100%
  • When using methods to prevent development risk at the product development stage.

Holding meetings of the CS & Quality Subcommittee that reports to the Sustainability Committee

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group deliberates on and determines all financial and non-financial initiatives and policies through its Board of Directors.
We maintain a CS & Quality Subcommittee, which reports to the Company’s Sustainability Committee. Both the Sustainability Committee and CS & Quality Subcommittee meet twice a year to deliberate on non-financial CS & Quality issues. In fiscal 2022, meetings of the CS & Quality Subcommittee were held twice, in October and March.

  • 15-03

CS & Quality Management Promotion System

Building Quality Assurance Systems That Reflect Business Characteristics

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group has built quality assurance systems that extend across all processes, from product development to design, production, and sales.
We have developed a quality assurance system for each process and promote standards-based controls on a daily basis. At the same time, we recognize that it is the field of manufacturing development that supports quality. Accordingly, we focus our efforts on promoting production activity innovation. In developing products and making improvements to quality, we undertake strict design screening from a variety of perspectives, such as those of quality assurance and safety.
In addition, we have established a system that enables maintenance and management of after-sale services for customers.

  • 09-39
Major Initiatives

Initiatives to Prevent Quality Data Irregularities and Falsification

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group put into place a system and framework for the thorough prevention of data irregularities and falsification based on the CS & Quality Medium-term Plan, which was launched in fiscal 2020.
In fiscal 2022, SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group focused mainly on securing the reliability and transparency of data, particularly regarding product inspections and the drafting of reports in order to ensure that the specifications agreed upon with our customers are observed. In addition, we are developing systems, as well as revamping and deploying daily management work, to make data input errors and falsification impossible. Moreover, we are focusing our efforts on digitizing inspection data while applying this data to help improve operations.
SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group will continue to strengthen internal quality control and to provide quality compliance training to ensure that the Group reinforces its awareness toward compliance. Through these means, we will enhance our quality assurance capabilities and extinguishing any potential for fraud.

Prevention of malfunctions starting from the design and development stages

Conducting Training Focused on Preventing Quality-related Problems

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group holds a number of seminars on the theme of preventing quality problems. Development Risk Prevention Seminars aim to teach effective and efficient prevention methods. DR Reviewer Training Seminars are held to improve the skills of employees who conduct DRs*1, while QFD*2 Seminars are conducted to impart methods pertaining to the organization of information on product development.
In fiscal 2022, we continued to conduct Development Risk Prevention Seminars and QFD Seminars on an online basis.

  • DR: Design Review
  • QFD: Quality Function Deployment
  • 05-03

QFD seminar

Creating a Design Screening Platform for New Businesses

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group has created a Gate Review (GR)* platform to perform strict design screenings when new businesses are launched, which we have been operating since fiscal 2020. GR clarifies discussion points during design screenings by applying a design check sheet to highlight perspectives that should be considered during the design phase. In addition, we conduct External Expert Reviews aimed at gaining new insights from internal and external experts as a source of initial design input in such areas as new business fields and legal regulations.

  • Gate Review (GR): A continuous activity to judge whether or not to proceed to the next step (checkpoint management feature).

Constructing a global training framework for CS & Quality personnel

With the aim of enhancing the on-site manufacturing capabilities that underpin quality, the Group supports Group KAIZEN Activities.
Under the current Medium-term Management Plan, we deployed activities based on the following three pillars.

  • 1.
    Reform the quality of Group KAIZEN Activities
    The freedom of KAIZEN Activities and announcements have expanded in an out-of-the-box manner along with the spread of online presentations, which we have successfully connected to quality reform.
  • 2.
    Promote the independence of Group KAIZEN Activities
    In providing theme support, including basic education, we have steadily increased the number of business sites that are able to promote activities on their own, both in Japan and overseas.
  • 3.
    Monitor Group KAIZEN Activities
    As a first for the Group, we held the KAIZEN Exchange Session online in 2022. This session broadly invited content that we wanted to introduce and hear about from among KAIZEN themes promoted by each business site. Ultimately, five teams made presentations and held question and answer sessions with attendees, in which many individuals participated to create a meaningful exchange.
  • 05-04

Group KAIZEN Exchange Session

New image for Group KAIZEN Activities: Holding Group KAIZEN presentations in a hybrid format

In January 2023, we held the Group KAIZEN Activity presentations (Group-wide competition) in a hybrid format.
We made various adjustments including limiting the number of in-person attendees as a means of preventing the spread of COVID-19, as well as increasing the number of online attendees. Many presenting business sites, including those from three overseas regions, attended in-person at the auditorium for the first time in three years, allowing the event to come to a successful conclusion amid rousing interaction between business sites.
Many of the presentation themes during the event involved strengthening quality, leading us to recognize the height of quality awareness among every individual employee working on the front lines of each business site.

  • 05-05

Fiscal 2022 Group KAIZEN Presentations

Constructing and effectively utilizing a new QMS system

We developed an original management sheet, which we dubbed the SEKISUI Process Management Chart (SPMC), in order to strengthen our process approach when promoting certification under the 2015 ISO 9001 standard. The SPMC provides an overview of the management flows of those processes, making it an effective tool in monitoring daily management, promoting corrective action as well as internal audits, and other activities including quality education.
In fiscal 2022, we revised the curriculum, including mock audit exercises, for SPMC Internal Audit Hands-on Training, which is held on an ongoing basis, and updated the content to be more easily understood by attendees.
In addition, we prepared Guidelines for Implementing Integrated Internal Audits Using SPMC and internal audit scenario videos with voiceovers. These efforts have served to deepen the level of permeation and understanding.
Every effort will continue to be made to improve the excellence of our quality management systems.

  • 05-06
  • 05-07
  • Guidelines for
    Integrated Internal
    Audits Using SPMC

  • SPMC Internal Audit Hands-on Training

Other Initiatives

Compliance with Laws and Internal Rules for Product Safety

Having positioned product safety as the most important element of quality, SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group strives to ensure the safety of all products manufactured and sold by each Group company in order to deliver safe products to its customers. We therefore implement safety reviews at the design and development stage to ensure product safety. In addition, when a legal violation related to product safety becomes known internally or is pointed out from external sources, SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group rapidly discloses information about the incident and moves quickly to discover the cause and prevent a reoccurrence. This is also true if internal rules and standards for product safety have not been followed.
As of the end of fiscal 2022, there were two incidents where the Group violated product safety laws and regulations. Each case was reported to Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in April 2023. SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group takes each incident very seriously and will pursue prompt corrective measures while making Group-wide efforts to prevent a recurrence.

Product Quality Disclosure and Labeling: Compliance with Laws and Internal Rules Relating to Product Information Disclosure

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group complies strictly with laws and internal rules relating to the disclosure of product quality and safety. The Group has established and confirms items to be checked regarding laws and product information disclosure at the development stage, and implements design reviews.
In fiscal 2022, there were no cases where we violated laws or internal rules related to the disclosure of product quality and safety.

Quality Assurance System in Collaboration with Suppliers

SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group engages in activities to ensure the quality of goods purchased from suppliers. For example, the Housing Company has established rules for 4M Change* management with suppliers and is building a product quality assurance system by ensuring implementation.

  • * 4M Change:
    A management method to prevent product defects and defective products from leaking into the market by controlling changes in four elements: Man, Machine, Method, and Material.

Formulating Quality Guidelines

Undertaking uniform quality control throughout the value chain—from product development to design, production, sales, and after-sales services—SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group is working to improve the level of its quality control in each process by formulating and issuing the following three guidelines.
The Development Guidelines for Strengthening Quality Assurance are aimed at preventing quality-related problems by predicting quality risks that can arise after commercialization. The Guidelines for Daily Management Activities are a collection of basic guides to routine management that must be followed in manufacturing.
The Contract / Specification Guidelines aim to reduce the risk of expanded compensation* related to product sales.

  • Expanded compensation: Customer compensation in the case of product defects that extend beyond returns and exchanges to include compensation for processing / construction / items made with these products, and other related damage.
  • 05-08
Performance Data

Fiscal 2022 Results

In fiscal 2022, there were two major quality issues (as defined by individual divisional company standards)*1. As a result, external failure costs*2 came in at 99% compared with fiscal 2016. Focusing on strengthening Group-wide quality assurance systems and on design/development processes, we will continue to promote the application of development risk prevention methods (such as QFD and DRBFM*3) to reduce external failure costs.
The rate of application of development risk prevention methods in fiscal 2022 was 100%.

  • Major quality issues: Problems related to product, technology, and service quality that could cause significant damage to customers, society, or SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group if not thoroughly resolved on an urgent basis.
  • External failure costs: Costs arising from responding to product-related complaints.
  • DRBFM: Design Review Based on Failure Mode (a preventive approach in which problems in new designs are discovered and solved by focusing on points of modification and change)

Business Sites That Have Received Third-party Certification for Their Quality Management Systems

Of the total number of Sekisui Chemical Group's production sites, 88% are ISO 9001 certified, and 99% when ISO 13485 and IATF 16949 are included.

Data Concerning Major Quality Issues

  • 09-78

Number of Major Quality Issues

Indicator Calculation Method
Major Quality Issues These refer to product and service quality issues determined by Corporate Headquarters or divisional company presidents, based on evaluations and judgments by the quality assurance manager, which could cause significant damage to customers, society, or SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group and lead to the loss of society’s trust in the Group if not thoroughly resolved on an urgent basis including:
  • 1)
    Major incidents
    • (1)
      Of the accidents that threatened user lives or lead to bodily harm, those in which the harm is serious.
    • (2)
      Product loss or destruction incidents for which there is a risk of severe or fatal user injuries
  • 2)
    Problems which have serious impacts (cause serious loss) to customers, users, or society
  • 3)
    Compliance (such as complying with related laws and regulations) problems related to product or service quality
  • 4)
    Product recall problems

Data Concerning External Failure Costs

  • 09-80

External Failure Costs

Indicator Calculation Method
External failure costs Costs arising from responding to product-related complaints

Other Data

  FY2016 FY2017 FY2018 FY2019 FY2020 FY2021 FY2022
Number of participants in the Development Risk Prevention Seminar(cumulative total) 302 418 502 555 604 657 710
Number of participants in the DR Reviewer Training Seminar (cumulative total) 166 259 283 296 349 363 363
Number of participants in the QFD Seminar (cumulative total) - - 31 90 188 251 325