Goals and Achievements of Major Initiatives
Foster and endorse the advancement of local staff overseas with the aim of advancing global management.
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|Goals for fiscal year 2021||
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|Goals for fiscal year 2021||Consider building a framework for optimizing the allocation of executives with a view to shifting to a global management system.|
|Goals for fiscal year 2020||
|Achievements in fiscal year 2020||
|Goals for fiscal year 2021||Increase the number of individuals participating in the GCD Program and practical training aimed at fostering global human resources at multiple levels to 10.|
Encourage women in the workplace with the aim of securing a diverse labor force and supporting diverse work styles.
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Promote the hiring of individuals with disabilities with the aim of securing a diverse labor force and supporting diverse work styles.
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Enhance labor productivity by promoting various measures to provide support for the physical and mental health of employees and the creation of comfortable workplaces.
|Goals for fiscal year 2020||
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|Goals for fiscal year 2021||
- Evaluations are based on self-evaluations of current progress.
Key: ★★★ = Excellent; ★★ = Satisfactory; ★ = Still needs work
Basic Approach to Human Resources Management
With the aim of being an organization that empowers all employees to reach their full potential, the DIC Group is committed to respecting human rights and eliminating all forms of discrimination and to creating a work environment that embraces diversity. The Group also strives to support a healthy work–life balance for each employee and create a work environment conducive to job satisfaction, as well as to foster human resources in markets around the world, which it recognizes as essential to ensuring sustainable corporate growth under its current medium-term management plan.
Strategies for a Stronger Management Infrastructure
In line with The DIC Way, which represents its fundamental management policy, the DIC Group has established a global human resources management framework under which Group companies in Japan, the PRC and the Asia–Pacific region are overseen by DIC, while those in North America, Europe, Central and South America, and Africa are overseen by Sun Chemical of the United States. The DIC111 medium-term management plan, which was introduced in February 2019, sets forth a strategy dubbed WING that is designed to rally the Group’s diverse human resources, a source of its competitiveness as a global organization. WING centers on four core themes, summarized as “work style revolution,” “HR infrastructure reform,” “next management selection” and “global talent development.”
WING: DIC111 Strategies for Human Resources Management
Progress in Fiscal Year 2020
Work style revolution
- Introduced leave for employees to accompany spouses overseas and short-term paid leave programs and implemented initiatives to promote telework system and awareness of flexible working options
HR infrastructure reform
- Built human resources database for management-level and higher employees in Japan, the PRC and the Asia–Pacific region
- Created global unified assessment system for employees in key positions
Next management selection
- Reinforced approach to selecting new management candidates by enhancing training for such candidates and expanded scope of human resources assessments
Global talent development
- Augmented existing development programs for global human resources by considering a method of assessing language ability, including conversational prowess
In fiscal year 2021, Work Style Revolution (WSR) 2020, which was launched in the previous fiscal year as a limited-time project to develop new work styles with the aim of boosting employee job satisfaction and productivity, was transformed into an all executive–led committee in which all employees will participate. The rapid advance of digitalization, together with the advent of COVID-19 and projections for the postpandemic “new normal,” have highlighted the need to revamp work styles to ensure job satisfaction and productivity, a task to which DIC executives have committed themselves. With the shift to a committee format, the project’s existing working groups have been realigned to create the Job Satisfaction Improvement Reform, Workplace Reform and Process Reform working groups, a framework under which executives will work as one to promote decisive measures.
Step Up Work Style Reforms to Enhance Job Satisfaction and Productivity
① Implement Reforms to Enhance Job Satisfaction
The WSR 2020 Committee—originally launched in fiscal year 2020 as a limited-time project to develop new work styles with the aim of boosting employee job satisfaction and productivity—has since been transformed into an all executive–led committee in which all employees will participate. The committee is charged with creating workplaces that embody The DIC Way by encouraging enthusiasm about taking on various challenges, evaluating performance fairly and recognizing personal value. To this end, the committee’s Job Satisfaction Enhancement Reform Working Group is spearheading the implementation of a variety measures to improve workplaces from five perspectives, namely, “diversity,” “inner branding,” “communication,” “career support” and “sense of belonging.”
One key inner branding initiative, dubbed “Dreams of the Challengers,” involves a regular series of video messages to employees from executives and other Group management leaders about experiences that gave them true job satisfaction and motivation. This has been well received as an initiative that encourages employees to really think about and feel the unique satisfaction that comes with working for DIC.
② Increase Productivity through Workplace Reforms
In January 2018, DIC launched the DIC Telework System, which is available to all employees regardless of position of workplace. In response to the emergence of COVID-19 in fiscal year 2020, the DIC Telework System’s limit of two days per week was abolished and telework encouraged wherever possible to help prevent the spread of the virus. This remains in effect in recognition of the reality of COVID-19 as a permanent part of life.
With an eye to life in a post-pandemic world, in fiscal year 2021 the Office Reform Working Group was established under the umbrella of the WSR 2020 Committee with the aim of realizing diverse work styles. To facilitate a shift to highly functional, rational new work styles, DIC embarked on various office reforms, beginning with its corporate headquarters in Tokyo. The concept behind these reforms was to incorporate advanced office design elements suitable for a facility serving as a corporate headquarters with the goal of facilitating highly autonomous work styles that enable employees to choose the workplace that they find most comfortable and which is best suited to their jobs. Moreover, by promoting efforts to go paperless, which is essential to such a flexible work environment, the Company is also encouraging smart business processes with the objective of improving one of the key intangibles that underpins the job satisfaction felt by employees. With the debut of its new corporate headquarters offices in fiscal year 2023, which will truly allow employees to choose the most appropriate location, functions and work environment, DIC also aims to further improve productivity.
Improve Engagement and Organizational Cohesiveness
In fiscal year 2021, DIC conducted a Groupwide survey as part of the WSR 2020 project’s efforts to improve engagement and organizational cohesiveness. Based on the results, the Company explored a variety of responses and resolved to implement the formalization of a system of one-on-one meetings and promotion of the taking on of business-related challenges as measures to improve engagement.
(1) Promote Communication and Use Empathy and Trust to Cultivate Solidarity
One issue highlighted by the fiscal year 2021 survey to improve engagement was a lack of communication between superiors and subordinates. In response, the Company made the decision to introduce a system of one-on-one meetings beginning in fiscal year 2022 with the aim of promoting communications between these two key groups. As well as the concrete moves necessary to establish a system of one-on-one meetings in the period under review, DIC developed a management communications training program for employees at that level, as well as training for all employees in how to conduct one-on-one meetings for subordinates as a prerequisite to higher office. In fiscal year 2022, the Company plans to further invigorate communication in-house by implementing a variety of new measures that go beyond enhancing that between managers and subordinates to focus on building the capabilities of individual employees.
(2) Advance Innovation by Encouraging Enthusiasm about Taking on Challenges
Early in fiscal year 2022, DIC substantially revamped its personnel system. This included replacing its existing qualification–based compensation system for regular employees, which is predicated on experience, with a system that emphasizes exercise of abilities, among others. The Company’s system for evaluating performance was also revised, with business goals clarified and quantified, and the weighting of performance and process amended so that performance is given more emphasis at the time of evaluation. In addition, DIC has introduced a system whereby points are added to the evaluations of both regular and management-level employees who have taken on challenges in their work.
Respect for Human Rights
The DIC Group actively supports global codes governing human rights,*1 in line with which in fiscal year 2018 it formulated the DIC Group
Human Rights Policy and began promoting related initiatives. The DIC Group Code of Business Conduct, which outlines standards that DIC
Group employees are expected to observe, lays down provisions prohibiting human rights violations and requiring respect for diversity, two
philosophies that are the foundation of the Group’s corporate activities. DIC Group employees are obliged to understand and provide written
pledges to abide by the code.
In fiscal year 2010, DIC became a signatory to the UNGC, pledging its support for the Ten Principles of the UNGC, which includes tenets regarding human rights and labor. The Company continues to implement related initiatives in all areas of its corporate activities to reinforce respect for human rights in the human resources management practices of all Group companies and prevent the occurrence of violations.
In response to the Modern Slavery Act 2015,*2 DIC is reinforcing training regarding human rights due diligence,*3 cognizant of the issue of human trafficking and the risks it poses to companies with operations in the United Kingdom. The Company also promotes awareness among DIC Group company executives and enhances corporate headquarters’ inspection and monitoring structure as part of an ongoing effort to bolster Group management capabilities.
- The International Bill of Human Rights, comprising the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenants on Human Rights (the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights); the International Labour Organization (ILO)’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles of Rights at Work; the UN’s Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights; and the Ten Principles of the UNGC.
- Under the Modern Slavery Act 2015, an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, companies with operations in the United Kingdom must report on the existence/nonexistence of slavery, human trafficking or other critical violations of human rights in their supply chains, related risks and steps they are taking to address such practices. “Modern slavery” encompasses debt bondage, forced labor and servitude; human trafficking; and exploitation (including sexual exploitation and forced organ donation).
- Human rights due diligence is an ongoing risk management process that a company needs to follow in order to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for how it addresses its adverse human rights impacts.
Initiatives in Fiscal Year 2021
A total of 58 DIC Group companies in Japan and overseas implement voluntary human rights and labor practices inspections. In fiscal year 2021, initiatives focused on promoting awareness of the DIC Group Human Rights Policy across the Group. Having analyzed and verified the results of voluntary inspections conducted to date, the Group implemented supplementary surveys in priority areas while at the same time conducting surveys and providing guidance as necessary regarding making improvements and promoting efforts to raise awareness. In fiscal year 2021, the DIC Group conducted human rights due diligence at three Group companies in Malaysia. This confirmed the absence of issues and enabled the Group to provide guidance on points to consider in order to curb the manifestation of risks.
The DIC Group Human Rights Policy
As a member of society that recognizes the importance of respect for human rights and respects the basic human rights of all stakeholders, including its customers, suppliers and employees, the DIC Group has formulated a human rights policy. Based on this policy, DIC works to increase the human rights awareness of its executives and employees and to conduct its business activities in a manner that shows respect for human rights.
This policy, which is in accordance with global human rights codes, articulates DIC’s fundamental stance on respect for human rights.
Scope of application
This policy applies to all executives and employees of the DIC Group. The Company shall also encourage its business partners and suppliers to adhere to this policy and cooperate with them to advance respect for human rights.
Responsibility to respect human rights
The Company shall strive to fulfill its responsibility to respect human rights by ensuring that its business activities do not result in violations of the human rights of stakeholders, as well as by preventing human rights abuses in the course of its business. In the event that its business partners or suppliers cause adverse human rights impacts through their businesses, products and services, the Company—while not directly complicit—shall use its influence to encourage the responsible parties to cease the practices responsible for such impacts.
Human rights due diligence
To fulfill its responsibility in regard to respect for human rights, the Company has created a human rights due diligence system, which it shall employ on an ongoing basis to identify and address human rights risks.
Should the Company cause adverse human rights impacts or should it become evident that it has been complicit in causing such impacts, the Company shall take appropriate corrective/remedial actions in response.
Compliance with applicable laws
The Company shall comply with applicable laws in the countries and territories in which it operates. The Company shall also respect international human rights principles and work actively to promote these principles.
Disclosure and education/training
The Company shall periodically report publicly on the progress of initiatives implemented in line with this policy. To ensure the effectiveness of this policy, the Company shall also provide appropriate training to its executives and employees.
Dialogue and discussion
The Company shall engage with stakeholders regarding initiatives implemented in line with this policy by creating opportunities for dialogue and promoting discussion in good faith.
Identifying principal human rights challenges
The Company has separately identified principal human rights challenges. In line with this policy, the Company shall use due diligence as appropriate. Recognizing this as an ongoing process, the Company shall also continue to revise and amend these challenges to reflect social change, business trends and other factors.
Principal Human Rights Challenges Facing the DIC Group
Based on key global standards regarding human rights, the DIC Group has identified the following as the principal human rights challenges it faces and promotes appropriate human rights diligence in accordance with its human rights policy. The Group will review these challenges on a regular basis, taking into consideration factors such as social change and business trends.
The DIC Group prohibits all types of discrimination, harassment and other practices that undermine the dignity of any individual. Potential targets of such discrimination include Group employees, women, children, indigenous peoples, migrant workers, business partners and communities.
Prevent child labor and forced labor
The DIC Group prohibits the use of child labor, forced labor, slave labor and labor resulting from any form of human trafficking.
Respect basic labor rights
The DIC Group respects basic labor rights, including freedom of association and employees’ rights to organize and to engage in collective bargaining.
Address the issue of conflict minerals
The DIC Group prohibits the use of conflict minerals. Should any raw materials purchased from third-party suppliers be found to contain conflict minerals, the Group will respond by, among others, immediately terminating the procurement thereof.
Respect the concept of equal pay for equal work
In principle, the DIC Group provides equal pay for equal work to both male and female employees.
The DIC Group’s Human Rights Due Diligence System
The DIC Group has created a human rights due diligence system, which it employs on an ongoing basis.
Due Diligence Initiatives to Address Principal Human Rights Challenges
Promotion of supply chain due diligence by the Purchasing Department
To ensure that its extended supply chain functions in a socially responsible manner, the Company established the DIC Group Universal Purchasing Policy in 2008, based on which it also formulated purchasing management regulations and the DIC Group Sustainable Procurement Guidebook, version 3 of which was published in February 2020. Using the policy and guidelines, the Company promotes sustainable procurement, as well as advances respect for human rights and takes comprehensive steps to address human rights risks such as conflict minerals, across it s supply chain.
Initiatives to help realize a sound, viable mica mining industry in Indiat
Mica, which has a broad range of industrial applications, including coatings, cosmetics and electronics materials and cutting fluids, is mined around the world. The use of child labor in the mining of mica in India, a leading pr oducer, has been identified as a cr itical issue for users. DIC Group company Sun Chemical, which oversees the Group’s printing inks, resins and pigments for cosmetics businesses in the Americas and Europe, is a founding member of the Responsible Mica Initiative, a unique global collaboration established in February 2017 to eradicate child labor in the mica mines of India. Through participation in this initiative, materials producers and cosmetics companies around the world are working to contribute to the realization of a sound, viable mica mining industry in I ndia.
Implementation of human rights due diligence in Indonesia and Malaysia
DIC has conducted human rights due diligence in Indonesia (fiscal year 2020) and Malaysia (fiscal year 2021). This process revealed no serious violations. Guidance was provided to on points to co nsider in order to curb the manifestation of risks.
Establishment of whistle-blowing hotlines and corrective measures by the compliance team
The Company has created a channel for Group employees to report to whistle-blowing hotlines. In fiscal year 2021, the Company received 18 reports of power harassment, discrimination and other issues through this system. However, internal investigations revealed no serious violations. Appropriate corrective measures and other initiatives were implemented.
The Company has established procedures for suppliers, customers, local communities and other stakeholders to report issues by telephone or through its global website and strives to respond swiftly when comments and complaints are received. No complaints pertaining to human rights issues were received in fiscal year 2021.
Building Trust with the DIC Employees’ Union
DIC’s management and representatives of its employees’ union meet regularly with the goal of ensuring healthy industrial relations based on mutual trust. In addition, through labor–management councils and casual management conferences, DIC shares management information and its vision for the future with union representatives and encourages the frank exchange of opinions. A total of 71.7% of parent company employees belong to the DIC Employees’ Union (99.2% of eligible employees).
Diversity and Inclusion
Promoting Diversity, a Source of DIC’s Competitiveness, and Inclusion, Essential to Making Diversity a Competitive Advantage
The DIC Group actively pursues diversity by employing a broad spectrum of individuals without regard to such considerations as gender, nationality, physical limitation or age. The Group works to foster a corporate culture that draws on its understanding and respect for diversity to produce creative ideas and to incorporate the concept of diversity into management. Specifically, through the WSR 2020 Committee the Group is promoting measures to encourage communication and providing career support, thereby fostering a sense of unity through empathy and trust and creating workplaces that enhance job satisfaction for all employees. In fiscal year 2021, DIC conducted a Groupwide survey to enhance the visibility of engagement with employees. Analysis of the survey results enabled the Company to gauge the status of efforts to engage and reflect this when formulating plans for diversity initiatives in fiscal year 2022. Specifically, while to date DIC has focused on bringing diversity to the workplace, survey results reiterated the fact that inclusion is essential to further instilling awareness of diversity, as well as to improving productivity and job satisfaction. Accordingly, initiatives going forward will focus on advancing inclusion.
In its DIC Vision 2030 long-term management plan, DIC identifies diversity and inclusion as a key component of its personnel management platform, and vows to nurture inclusion, recognizing this as essential to making diversity a competitive advantage. As part of its ESG management initiatives, DIC has set, and discloses information regarding, quantitative targets not only for the diversity of executives and employees but also for key aspects of work–life balance such as childcare leave for male employees, which it recognizes as essential to the promotion of diversity overall. This includes establishing KPIs designed to measure diversity awareness. The Company’s DIC111 medium-term management plan, which concluded in fiscal year 2020, included ambitious targets for the percentage of the management team accounted for by women. While the absolute number of female managers has risen gradually, the percentage of management positions occupied by female employees remains below the target level. Similarly, the percentage of employees accounted for by foreign nationals remains short of the target level, hindered by the spread of COVID-19. In formulating DIC Vision 2030, DIC has reset these targets and will step up efforts to ensure their achievement by reinforcing awareness of diversity and inclusion through measures focused particularly on the later.
01Hiring Foreign Nationals
With the objective of securing talented individuals with advanced specialized capabilities, global perspectives and language capabilities, DIC actively promotes the hiring of international students completing undergraduate or graduate studies at Japanese universities, as well as Japanese and foreign nationals who are completing undergraduate studies at overseas universities or have extensive specialized experience and expertise. At present, approximately 43 foreign nationals are employed in various capacities at DIC. To support the careers of employees who are foreign nationals, DIC translates key in-house materials into English. The Company also holds networking conferences to foster ties among non-Japanese employees and provide information on the personnel system, employment conditions and efforts to improve workplace environments. DIC will continue to regularly conduct surveys of and meet directly with these employees to ensure their views and actual workplace conditions are reflected in measures implemented. In fiscal year 2022, the Company plans to also step up efforts focused on enhancing awareness of the importance of inclusion.
As someone helping to drive further diversity at DIC, I look forward to contributing to the evolution of both the Company and society.
I began looking for a job in Japan while I was working to complete my doctorate here, but not many companies were actively hiring students whose Japanese-language skills were not particularly good. DIC was one of the few keenly promoting the recruitment of students from overseas. This is truly an outstanding company, with a wide range of businesses, facilities and affiliated companies around the world. Since joining, I have been involved in the development of different products at three sites, allowing me to learn from experts with a variety of backgrounds and grow in my role. I also think DIC is one of the best companies in terms of creating work environments conducive to continuous service for female employees. I believe DIC’s diversity is what has enabled it to respond flexibly to the dramatic changes sweeping the world. For example, in addition to swiftly reinforcing measures in the workplace to prevent the spread of COVID-19, DIC also quickly embarked on the development of a variety of products with antiviral functions. As someone helping to drive further diversity at DIC, I look forward to contributing to the evolution of both the Company and society.
Color Materials Technical Division, Central Research Laboratories Thimthong Narumon
DIC is a company that evolves constantly to respond to the needs of the times.
DIC is a company that is bold in its pursuit of dreams and innovations and evolves constantly to ensure its ability to respond to the needs of the times. In recent years, we have seen a substantial increase in the number of female managers and employees who are foreign nationals, both of which are the result of practical efforts to promote diversity. Employees with diverse backgrounds, strengths and weaknesses work together to create comprehensive teams that can adapt to whatever challenging business scenarios may arise in the future. I am impressed with DIC’s commitment to diversity in all its forms, which is one factor that makes it stand out among companies that have been in business for more than a century. I am proud to be a member of the DIC family.
SC Project, Kashima Plant, DIC Corporation Siong Wan Foo
DIC’s flexible work environment enables employees to accommodate work plans.
As a new graduate, I wanted to find a job with a company that would help me grow as a citizen of the world. As an organization with bases around the world, DIC was the ideal choice. The group I was assigned to is tasked with developing PPS compounds, which are key engineering plastics used widely in automotive components. Because DIC produces PPS compounds at five sites worldwide, including in Japan, we interact frequently with colleagues and customers from overseas. Several members of our team have experience working in other countries, which makes for a lot of unique personalities. DIC has introduced a variety of working arrangements, including flextime and working at home. This creates a work environment that enables employees to, for example, adjust work hours to accommodate work plans, or use earphones at their desk when they need to concentrate, making it much more flexible than most Japanese companies. It is encouraging to see the idea of not being constrained by preconceived notions—something those of us in technical positions often hear—is gradually finding its way into efforts to reform work styles at my own workplace.
Polymer Processing Technical Group 2, DIC Corporation Sia-Er Tan
Thanks to the support of my supervisors and colleagues, I learned to really love my work.
I met a number of DIC employees at an academic conference when I was in graduate school and was really impressed by their positive attitude and broad expertise, so when I started looking for a job after graduation DIC was my first choice. My first assignment was in a department involved in developing LC products, which is completely different from my area of specialization in university and something I really did not know much about. Thanks to the support of my supervisors and colleagues, I was able to overcome any difficulties I faced and play a key role in developing products and learned to really love my work. To me, DIC’s true appeal is its willingness to entrust important tasks to young employees and the fact that I have so many colleagues I can talk to about anything, whether work-related or personal. In April of this year, I was transferred to a department involved in gravure inks development, so I am once again working hard to learn new things with the aim of quickly becoming a useful part of my new team.
Dispersion Technical Group 1, Tokyo Plant Keumhee Jang
Networking Conference for Non-Japanese Employees
In December 2020, DIC held a networking conference to foster ties among non-Japanese employees. The Company will continue to organize these conferences on a periodic basis with the idea that it may be constructive for people who feel alienated or lonely to know they have colleagues with the same concerns.
On the day of the conference, presentations were given on Japan’s public and private pension systems, as well as on frequently asked questions about DIC’s personnel system, after which the floor was opened for a free discussion. Feedback was largely positive, with participants commenting that the event had given them an understanding of pension systems and enabled them to build networks, and that they looked forward to learning about the career plans of other non-Japanese colleagues.
DIC Executives Participate in Diversity Roundtable Discussion
President and CEO Kaoru Ino and other DIC executive officers based in Japan took part in a roundtable discussion on the theme of diversity at corporate headquarters in Japan. Designed to enable participants to share information on initiatives in various departments with the aim of improving the effectiveness of initiatives going forward, the discussion was moderated by managing executive officer Masaya Nakafuji and focused on efforts to promote career opportunities for female employees and activities conducted in line with the Company’s diversity road map. During the discussion, interview seminars for female employees held by production departments and other specific initiatives were presented as case studies to illustrate the importance of creating work environments that are conducive to diverse human resources, as well as to encourage collaboration and foster a sense of solidarity among diverse employees.
02Expanding Career Opportunities for Women
In line with its commitment to promoting diversity, DIC implements a variety of initiatives to expand career opportunities for female employees. Having established a full-scale program to support employees in balancing the demands of a career and childcare in 2007, since fiscal year 2016 the Company has pushed ahead with measures to transform employee mindsets and its corporate culture, as well as to provide training designed to encourage the drive and determination of female employees and broaden the range of jobs open to women.
Creating a Framework for Initiatives
In fiscal year 2017, DIC established the position of diversity officer in each of its business units to create a framework for initiatives in each business unit that reflects the actual situation on the ground. The individual in charge of diversity for the Group and the business unit diversity officers meet periodically to exchange information, among others, with the aim of raising the standard of initiatives implemented Companywide.
Transforming Employee Mindsets and the DIC Corporate Culture
In October 2016, DIC held the Women in DIC Forum, which addressed the issue of career opportunities for female employees and welcomed female
executives from multiple DIC Group companies, at its corporate headquarters in Tokyo. Approximately 800 employees—split evenly between female
employees and male management-level employees—participated in the forum. In the first session, four female executives from overseas Group companies
gave presentations, while in the second session three female employees in senior positions in Japan joined the four speakers in a panel discussion on
pursing a rewarding career as a way to enrich one’s life. The discussion was broadcast to 14 Group sites across Japan.
As part of its efforts to change the mindsets of management-level employees, in May 2017 DIC held a conference for approximately 300 line supervisors on the meaning of diversity. The following month, the Company held a roundtable discussion that included an outside director who is board chair of an NPO and as such is well versed in diversity management.
In May 2018, DIC staged a diversity-related event for executives and managers overseeing female employees at its corporate headquarters in Tokyo. The event, which was attended by approximately 300 individuals from 16 sites across Japan, was divided into two parts. The first was a lecture titled “Diversity Is a Strategy,” which was given by Yosuke Yagi, CEO of People First, Ltd., whose career includes stints as a human resources manager for General Electric Japan Ltd. and executive officer and executive vice president of LIXIL Group Corporation. Mr. Yagi’s lecture touched on a variety of points, including tips for bringing out the best from people and organizations that he actually put into practice at LIXIL and about unconscious biases that impede the careers of female employees. The second part of the event was a discussion between Mr. Yagi and DIC president and CEO Kaoru Ino titled “Diversity at DIC: The Next Challenge,” which was moderated by Yukio Ishizuka of Nikkei Inc. In addition to an exchange of views on the results of DIC’s diversity awareness survey, the participants looked at the direction of efforts to promote diversity at DIC by examining employees’ understanding and gaps in awareness between female and male employees, and introducing case studies from other companies.
In September 2019, an executive roundtable was held during which reports on developments and achievements from 2016 through 2019 were given and future diversity promotion activities were discussed. Department-specific activities reported on included a networking meeting held for female employees and an interview with newly appointed female managers in the Production Planning Department, which has a lower percentage of female employees than other departments.
President and CEO Kaoru Ino and W-LDP Participants Hold Lunchtime Roundtable Discussion
In May 2019, DIC president and CEO Kaoru Ino participated in DIC’s Woman Leader Development Program (W-LDP) lunchtime roundtable discussion. In addition to a presentation by Mr. Ino on DIC’s efforts to promote diversity, the event featured a discussion that covered a variety of matters, including modifying work environments to accommodate aging societies with declining birthrates and an increasing number of two-income households, approaches to helping the next generation of employees balance childcare and their career, and what is lacking in DIC’s current efforts to promote diversity. Participants reacted positively, commenting that the event had been a valuable opportunity to learn what senior management is thinking and to gain a proper understanding of the Company’s diversity promotion program.
The Expanding Scope of Positions for Female Employees
Since first assigning four female employees to line shift jobs at the Chiba Plant in 2008, DIC has gradually increased the number of female employees in production and utility control groups across Japan. At present, there are 30 female employees—including five performing shift jobs— on 14 production lines at seven sites.
DIC Recognized as Nadeshiko Brand for Fiscal Year 2020, Earning Selection for the Third Consecutive Year
In recognition of its superb achievement in expanding career opportunities for women, DIC was selected as a Nadeshiko Brand for fiscal year 2020, the third time it was honored under this program, which is sponsored by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE).
The Nadeshiko Brand initiative aims to introduce TSE-listed companies judged to be outstanding in terms of efforts to empower women in the workplace as attractive stocks for investors who emphasize medium- to long-term improvements in corporate value with the objective of accelerating such efforts. The initiative assesses approximately 3,600 companies across all TSE sections based on what they do to promote diversity-conscious management and on their disclosure of related information, and selects Nadeshiko brands in each industry category. In fiscal year 2020, 45 companies were selected as Nadeshiko brands, including four from the chemicals sector.
What I learned through participation in a J-Win program designed to advance career opportunities for women.
I participated in a 23-person working group organized on the theme of collaboration among companies with the goal of group members fortifying knowledge and experience through a variety of activities, including document studies, visits to various companies and the examination of case studies. To me, the most exhausting part was the discussing of matters until every member was satisfied. As individuals with nothing in common other than the fact that we are female and businesspeople, I think we all found team building and the alignment of goals difficult. The opportunity to share information with people from different companies and systems was stimulating and provided an opportunity to reflect on one’s own company. Participation in this working group also enabled me to build a network of contacts that I will always value. Going forward, the challenge will be to transform this important experience and the connections I made into something that effectively benefits DIC.
Publicity Manager, PR Group, Corporate Communications Department Yukie Yano
03Advancing the Employment of Individuals with Disabilities
DIC is committed to creating inclusive work environments that help individuals with disabilities enjoy active and fulfilling careers. One initiative is an internship program, organized in collaboration with special needs schools, that is designed to transition into full-time employment. In fiscal year 2021, both regular hiring in April as well as needs-based hiring at individual sites met with success. As of December 31, 2021, individuals with disabilities accounted for 2.6% of DIC’s total labor force, noticeably above Japan’s legally mandated quota of 2.3%. Going forward, DIC will continue working with the Japanese government’s Hello Work public employment offices, as well as with special needs schools and organizations that promote the hiring of individuals with disabilities, and will take further steps to enhance work environments to increase workplace accessibility.
I look forward to sharing the basic principles of safe workplace conduct that I have learned with new employees and interns.
I joined DIC Estate in April 2020 and was assigned to the Business Support Department. However, as COVID-19 spread, normal operations in the mailroom became increasingly challenging. Nonetheless, despite feeling somewhat uneasy about the future each time an increase in infections was reported, we have continued to collect and deliver mail, as well as to coordinate courier services. In this environment, I have tried to keep two things in mind. The fi rst is to be sure to always greet colleagues with a smile and a cheerful greeting. The words of gratitude from colleagues in response are a great encouragement. The second is to employ “pointing and calling,” that is, gesturing and verbalizing important indicators, which is a key principle of workplace conduct for avoiding mistakes that helps ensure the accurate sorting and delivering of internal and regular mail. This means carefully checking the name and department or company of the sender and receiver, and the address for each piece of mail, taking responsibility for preventing erroneous or delayed deliveries.
My goal going forward is to properly convey to new employees and trainees what I have learned over the past year about basic principles of safe workplace conduct. I will also continue observing these principles in my own work.
Business Support Department, DIC Estate Co., Ltd. Ryosuke Maruyama
Words of gratitude from colleagues are a great encouragement and give me a sense of satisfaction.
I joined DIC Estate on April 3, 2017, and was assigned to the mail room, which is part of the Business Support Department. My responsibilities include collecting and delivering mail, coordinating courier services and maintaining employee-use tea dispensers. Each requires paying close attention to key priorities. When collecting and delivering interoffice and regular mail, we need to ensure that each item is delivered to the appropriate department not only correctly but also safely. In coordinating courier services, we must ensure packages can be carried safely by keeping a close eye on weight and number. When maintaining tea dispensers, it is important not to miss water droplets and dirt so that the machines are always pristine. Words of gratitude from colleagues when I am at work are a great encouragement and give me a sense of satisfaction in doing a good job. My goal is to be like the mail room team leaders, that is, someone who can discern what needs to be done and act swiftly and who is thoughtful and considerate of everyone around them.
Business Support Department, DIC Estate Co., Ltd. Ryo Nakagawa
The kind voices of other employees and DIC executives give me a sense of pride in my job.
I joined DIC Estate in February 2017. My responsibilities are primarily the preparation and serving of tea to guests and the maintenance of employee-use tea dispensers situated on each floor of the DIC Building in Nihonbashi. Maintenance of the tea dispensers includes cleaning the drip trays and filters and replenishing supplies of tea and sugar. I prepare and serve tea to guests in the executive reception room on the third floor and clean up after the guests have left. Other employees always thank me for keeping the employee-use tea dispensers clean. DIC executives tell me that guests compliment my proper tea serving etiquette. Compliments like these give me a sense of pride in my job. I will continue working to keep the tea dispensers in tip-top shape for my colleagues, as well as to further improve my ability to prepare and serve delicious tea that pleases guests.
Business Support Department, DIC Estate Co., Ltd. Akari Tanaka
Tokyoto Business Service Reports on the DIC Group
In 2020, DIC and DIC Estate were profi led by Tokyoto Business Service Co., Ltd. on its corporate website. The company is a civic-sector entity in which the Tokyo metropolitan government has a 49% stake. In addition to featuring the DIC Group’s active efforts to hire individuals with disabilities, the website report took a look at the mail collection and fl oor-by-fl oor delivery, courier service coordination and tea dispenser maintenance services at DIC’s corporate headquarters in Tokyo provided by DIC Estate employees. Filming and interviews were conducted on-site to show employees with disabilities on the job.
04Reemployment after Retirement and Support for Retirement Planning
DIC has deployed a system that facilitates the reemployment until age 65 of individuals reaching retirement age (60) and wishing to remain with the organization. With available options including full-time work, short-time work and work sharing, this system enables reemployed individuals to maximize their experience and make full use of their accumulated technological capabilities and specialized expertise, thereby contributing to sustainable growth for the DIC Group and the training of subsequent generations.
DIC also offers classes for employees within a year of retirement that helps them prepare for life after their careers. These classes provide assistance with retirement planning and education regarding the national pension system, as well as offer retirement lifestyle simulations.
Work Style Revolution Initiatives that Support a Healthy Work–Life Balance
DIC views a healthy work–life balance as essential to both self-realization and sustainable corporate growth. Accordingly, from the standpoint of corporate health management,* the Company continues to expand systems intended to facilitate such a balance.
In response to falling birthrates and lengthening life spans, the Japanese government has launched a drive to promote work style revolution, in line with its belief that positive workplaces lead to higher productivity, with the aim of helping individuals balance the demands of a career and childcare or nursing care and improving productivity. Since well before this, DIC has promoted initiatives aimed at enabling all employees to realize both a satisfying work life and a fulfilling life outside work.
- An approach to employee health management that emphasizes a corporate management perspective and the implementation * of strategic measures.
01Enhancing Programs that Help Employees Balance the Demands of Work and Home
In 1986, DIC blazed a trail for chemicals manufacturers in Japan by implementing a childcare leave program. Since establishing a program to support employees in balancing the demands of a career and childcare in 2007, the Company has continued promoting measures that make it easier for employees to make use thereof. In fiscal year 2008, DIC acquired the Kurumin Mark, which recognizes companies that promote initiatives designed to assist employees in raising children. The Company has also deployed a system that gives regular employees the option to accept or refuse transfers requiring relocation and, since 2012, a system that allows management-level employees to limit the locations to which they will accept transfers, making it easier for individuals who are unable to accept transfers that involve relocation because of childbirth, childcare, nursing care or other responsibilities.
Promoting Measures to Retain Employees with Nursing Care Responsibilities
In Japan, one of the social ramifications of falling birthrates and lengthening life spans is an increase in the number of people requiring
nursing care, as a result of which more people find themselves having to leave their jobs to take care of family members.
Steps taken by the government to help address these issues include revising the Child Care and Family Care Law in 2016 to make it easier for individuals to take leave or time off and increasing benefits for temporary absences from work. To encourage use and promote knowledge of its related leave programs, in June 2017 DIC began distributing the Childcare and Nursing Care Handbook. DIC has also revised the rules of these programs, including making it possible to break up nursing care leave, as well as to extend the period over which they may shorten their workday from one year to three years, thereby making them easier for employees to use.
Major Expansion of the Flextime System
To facilitate flexible work styles, in fiscal year 2017 DIC resolved to significantly expand its flextime system and in April 2018 made the system applicable to all areas of operations other than production floors. The system makes it possible for employees to determine the time at which they end their working day to the extent that it does not hinder business efficiency, as well as to simultaneously make use of telework, with the goal of promoting the independent execution of duties and enhancing self-management capabilities.
In fiscal year 2016, DIC began exploring the potential of telework, a flexible work arrangement that enables employees to work from home or another remote
location using information and communications technologies (ICT), thus eliminating the time and location constraints of traditional work arrangements. The
following year, employees and management conducted extensive talks to iron out details. After analyzing and evaluating the results of a trial involving 57
employees, in January 2018 the Company launched the DIC Telework System, which is available to all employees regardless of position or workplace.
In response to the emergence of COVID-19 in January 2020, the DIC Telework System’s limit of two days per week was abolished and telework implemented in principle for the entire DIC Group in Japan to help prevent the further spread of the virus. When Japan’s first state of emergency was declared in April, more than 90% of Group office workers, centering on those in sales and management-related departments, were able to continue performing their jobs without commuting to their normal place of work. This was maintained even after the state of emergency was lifted, in recognition of the reality of COVID-19 as a permanent part of life.
Looking ahead, DIC will continue to create systems that make it possible for employees to choose a work style that suits the type of work they do, as well as their own personal needs, with the aim of helping encourage a healthy work–life balance. The Company will also further promote the independent execution of duties to reinforce self-management capabilities, thereby accelerating efforts to galvanize employees and encouraging them to give full play to their creativity.
Thanks to the new telecommuting system, both my professional and private life are more fulfilling.
The way salespeople work has changed from back in the day and responsibilities other than visiting customers continue to increase. In addition to dealing with internal paperwork, I have to deal with environmental and legal/regulatory inquiries, so one or two days each week are taken up with deskwork. More than a few of these tasks are conducive to telecommuting. Like most other salespeople, I also work when I have a free moment between business trips and when I’m out of the office. Telecommuting allows me focus before I leave for a business trip or when I get home, so I’m able to be much more efficient. I look forward making further use of the telecommuting system to achieve a work–life balance that suits me and helps ensure a more fulfilling professional and private life.
Manager, Tokyo EP Sales Group, Composite Material Products Division Takuro Mikami
Establishment of a System to Help Employees Balance Medical Treatment and Work
In January 2020, DIC introduced a system to support employees undergoing medical treatment who wish to continue working. To guarantee this system functions effectively, the Company formulated guidelines to ensure employees making use of this system receive the ongoing support necessary to balance medical treatment and work through jobrelated accommodations and considerations.
Programs that Help Employees Balance the Demands of Work and Home
|Childcare Leave Program||The maximum length of leave is until the child reaches the age of 2 years and 6 months, which is one year longer than the legally mandated leave period.|
|Paid leave programs for pregnancy and childcare||Outpatient care leave: Employees can take leave for outpatient care, including regular medical examinations and
|Special maternity protection leave: Female employees take up to 10 days of special leave during pregnancy or the
year after giving birth to protect the health of both mother and child.
|Leave to Assist with Parenting Program: Male employees can take five consecutive days of paid leave during the
eight weeks following their child’s birth to assist with parenting.
|Pediatric nursing care leave: Employees can take leave to provide nursing care for a child until the end of the child’s
third year of elementary school, which is beyond what is mandated by law. This includes
up to five days of paid leave per fiscal year.
|Childcare While Working Program||Employees can shorten their workday by up to three hours until the end of a child’s third year of elementary school.
Employees can also stagger their working hours to accommodate childcare schedules.
|Economic support system||This system enables employees on unpaid childcare leave to borrow a portion of their bonuses in advance to pay for, among others, fertility treatment or infant care facility fees.|
|Return to previous (or equivalent) position||Employees returning from childcare leave must be allowed to return to their previous position or to a position equivalent thereto.|
|Information sharing to
promote program participation
|DIC’s views on support for work and childcare balance, as well as a guide to its various available systems and how to make use of them, are posted on the Company’s website and intranet.|
|Nursing care leave system||Employees can take such leave for up to one year, exceeding the statutory maximum of 93 days. As of January 2018, employees may also break up leave without restriction.|
|Nursing Care While Working Program||Employees not wishing to take leave while providing nursing care can shorten their workday by up to two hours for a maximum period of three years. As of January 2018, employees may also request to be excused from doing overtime without restriction.|
|Leave to accompany spouse overseas||Employees can take leave in the form of a temporary overseas assignment to accompany a spouse who is scheduled to be abroad for more than one year. The period of the leave must be more than one year, with a maximum length of three years. Employees may make use of this system once during their careers.|
|Relocation limitation system||Management-level employees may limit the locations to which they will accept transfers that involve relocating because of childbirth, childcare, nursing care or other responsibilities.|
|System to help employees balance medical treatment and work||Employees undergoing medical treatment who wish to keep working can access necessary support in the form of job-related accommodations and considerations.|
|Half-day and hourly annual paid
|Employees make take annual paid leave in half-day units. They may also take up to five days of annual paid leave in one-hour units.|
|Saved paid leave system||Expiring annual paid leave can be saved for up to 30 days and used for a variety of purposes, including injuly or illness, nursing care for a family member, care for a sick child and fertility treatment|
Use of the Childcare Leave and Leave to Assist with Parenting Programs
Owing to the introduction of various programs to help employees in balancing the demands of work and home and the creation of an environment that encourages employees
to take advantage of such thereof, the percentage of DIC employees who return to work after making use of the Childcare Leave Program is currently 100%. In addition, the
number of individuals using the Leave to Assist with Parenting Program, which enables male employees to take time off in the weeks after the birth of a child to assist their
partner, has risen.
Thanks to efforts to enhance these systems, the average years of employment for female employees has increased and continues to exceed the average for male employees.
|Fiscal year 2016||Fiscal year 2017||Fiscal year 2018||Fiscal year 2019||Fiscal year 2020||Fiscal year 2021|
|Number of employees using the Childcare Leave Program||Fiscal year 2016: 35(0)||Fiscal year 2017: 35(0)||Fiscal year 2018: 21(4)||Fiscal year 2019: 28(4)||Fiscal year 2020: 22(3)||Fiscal year 2021: 25(4)|
|Number of employees using the Leave to Assist with Parenting Program||Fiscal year 2016: 62||Fiscal year 2017: 77||Fiscal year 2018: 81||Fiscal year 2019: 86||Fiscal year 2020: 84||Fiscal year 2020: 77|
Note: Figures in parentheses are the number of male employees included in the total number of employees using the Childcare Leave Program.
Balancing a career and childcare is a challenge, but I feel happy and fulfilled.
When I first joined DIC as a salesperson, I was a bit taken aback by the attention given to the fact that I am a woman, but it was never uncomfortable in any way. The biggest test came after I became pregnant, had my baby and then returned to work after taking maternity leave and childcare leave. First, there were all the unexpected and bewildering changes that come with pregnancy. Then I was up to my ears looking after a new baby, a situation that was compounded by anxiousness about being away from work for so long. Since coming back to work, the limits of being a working mother have been a source of some pressure, but everyone in my department and family has been really encouraging. Balancing a career and childcare is certainly a challenge, but it’s one I took on readily and I feel happy and fulfilled in both roles. I’m really grateful to have such support, and I will continue to do my very best both at work and at home.
Advanced Technology Marketing Dept. Naoko Nakajima
02Reducing Extreme Overwork and Encouraging Employees to Take Annual Paid Leave
DIC has deployed an electronic system to manage on-site hours, working hours and approved overtime hours. As a measure to prevent extreme overwork, if
an employee appears likely to exceed the agreed-upon overtime limit (70 hours/month), their supervisor and the senior executive in charge are automatically
notified. The supervisor is required to submit a report outlining the employee’s work responsibilities and factors behind the excessive hours and presenting
specific measures to ameliorate the situation, which is also shared with the DIC Employees’ Union, a process designed to curb and reduce excessively long
In addition, the Company has instituted a mandatory Groupwide “no overtime day” every Wednesday and on payday, which in Japan is once a month at month-end, in a bid to encourage efficient work practices and further bolster productivity. (Sites can change these days as appropriate.) Employees are also encouraged to take annual paid leave, with sites recommending appropriate timing for leave and having employees plan dates for such leave.
Average Monthly Overtime Hours Worked and Annual Paid Leave Taken
|Fiscal year 2015||Fiscal year 2016||Fiscal year 2017||Fiscal year 2018||Fiscal year 2019||Fiscal year 2020|
|Average monthly overtime hours worked per employee||Fiscal year 2015：12.1 hours||Fiscal year 2016：12.3 hours||Fiscal year 2017：12.2 hours||Fiscal year 2018：12.0 hours||Fiscal year 2019：10.8 hours||Fiscal year 2020：10.1 hours|
|Average annual paid leave granted||Fiscal year 2015：18.8 days||Fiscal year 2016：19.1 days||Fiscal year 2017：18.8 days||Fiscal year 2018：18.6 days||Fiscal year 2019：18.7 days||Fiscal year 2020：18.7 days|
|Average annual paid leave used||Fiscal year 2015：11.2 days||Fiscal year 2016：12.0 days||Fiscal year 2017：12.0 days||Fiscal year 2018：12.5 days||Fiscal year 2019：13.3 days||Fiscal year 2020：11.8 days|
|Usage rate for annual paid leave||Fiscal year 2015：59.6％||Fiscal year 2016：62.8％||Fiscal year 2017：63.8％||Fiscal year 2018：67.2％||Fiscal year 2019：70.9％||Fiscal year 2020：63.1％|
Measures to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19
Between February 17 and December 31, 2020, a total of 20 internal notifications were sent under the heading “Measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.” Efforts ranged from promoting internal initiatives to prevent infection to detailed instructions regarding individual employee behavior.
Human Resources Infrastructure Reform
With the rapid expansion of its global operations, DIC recognizes that securing and fostering human resources around the world and creating an
environment that encourages cross-border career advancement and mobility is essential to increasing corporate value. To these ends, since fiscal year
2015 the Company has sought to develop harmonized promotion, personnel evaluation and remuneration systems, the cornerstone of the global human
resources management framework for overseas DIC Group companies under its jurisdiction. In January 2018, DIC and DIC Graphics unified qualification
standards for its approximately 1,300 management-level (i.e., manager and above) employees, replacing traditional ability-based standards with role-based
standards. As a consequence, consistent duty- and role-based standards are now used for the majority of such employees in the Americas and Europe, the
Asia–Pacific region, the PRC and Japan.
The Group has also integrated its evaluation systems for Group company presidents and other executives in Japan and overseas with the goal of encouraging management approaches that are optimal for the Group as a whole from both a medium- and a long-term perspective. In addition, the Group has integrated its global personnel policies to ensure that remuneration is in keeping with local market levels and individual job responsibilities.
Under DIC111, in fiscal year 2019 the Group began advancing efforts to consolidate employee qualification systems worldwide, unify assessment standards and formats for management-level employees, and develop an IT system to facilitate the construction of a global human resources platform. Through such efforts, the Company will strive to realize consistent Groupwide global human resources and personnel management systems.
Securing and Fostering Human Resources
01Ensuring Fair and Consistent Treatment
To ensure that the efforts and achievements of all employees are reflected appropriately in their treatment, DIC has consolidated its numerous
employee qualification systems irrespective of job classification and educational credentials. The selection of employees to recommend for
qualification is done through screening based on objective standards, thereby guaranteeing equal opportunities for promotion to all motivated,
Remuneration and personnel evaluation systems designed to enhance job satisfaction and ensure that individual employees’ abilities and achievements are assessed appropriately and reflected in a timely manner. Of note, the Company has introduced MBO—a goalsetting management tool that promotes both corporate growth and employee development—into its personnel evaluation system. Results of individual evaluations are fed back in full to employees, including reasoning behind determination, in a transparent process that ensures employees are largely satisfied with evaluation results.
02Establishment of the Next Management Selection Process
In line with a strategy outlined in DIC111 to establish a process for selecting the next management team, in fiscal year 2018 the Company embarked on a trial aimed at realizing the mechanism for such a system. The Human Resources Strategy Department, created in January 2019, works to clarify qualifications for key positions, as well as to explore processes for selecting and monitoring promising human resources and for the Talent Management Committee to match candidates to positions.
03New Human Resources Development Policies and a Dramatic Overhaul of the Human Resources Development Programs
Having resolved to dramatically revamp its overall personnel configuration, looking 10 or even 20 years into the future, in fiscal year 2020 DIC discontinued its human resources development programs, with the exception of new employee training, global talent development and new manager training. The Company then commenced a process of verifying the effectiveness of its existing approach to human resources development, formulating new basic policies and creating new programs.
Principal Training Programs and Content
- The IMD is a business school based in Lausanne, Switzerland.
- Versant tests of English proficiency are used by major global corporations and government agencies around the world.
DIC chooses talented employees with the goal of systematically cultivating the leaders of the future and dispatches them to a variety of external institutions providing training in diverse areas, including liberal arts. In fiscal year 2021, the Company added the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) to its slate of selected external training institutions and dispatched its first management candidates to the Swiss school, albeit online. Moreover, the Company revised the content and target of the English-language component of its in-house training program, relaunching it as global leader communications training. DIC is also planning global leader skills training designed to impart the knowledge and skills critical to management with a view to launch in fiscal year 2022.
Global Talent Development
DIC places significant emphasis on global talent development, that is, training to improve English-language ability. Having positioned its existing global communications training program as an important part of its new configuration for fostering human resources, the Company revamped the program’s content and format and relaunched it with practical content and a focus on the short-term, intensive acquisition of global standard advanced communications skills. DIC has traditionally used TOEIC as the benchmark to evaluate English-language proficiency, but in fiscal year 2021 the Company also began using the Versant English Speaking Test to gauge speaking ability, which is particularly important in actual business situations. DIC also continued to enhance the content of the English-language study and selfdevelopment support programs.
This is what I learned as a participant in the second round of the Next Global Human Resources Development Program.
Ever since I joined DIC, I have felt a need for English in my work and wanted to do something about my poor English skills, but before I realized it 20 years had passed! When I was given the opportunity to participate in the second round of the Next Global Human Resources Development Program, I saw it as my last chance to study English seriously. About 80% of the 11-month program was conducted in English, so it was tough going and I spent a lot of time feeling puzzled and stressed, but under the guidance of the program’s knowledgeable, experienced and passionate instructors I not only improved my English, but also acquired key skills necessary to function in a global business environment. I found the three global communication skills assessment sessions particularly useful as they helped strengthen my English-language presentation, negotiating and communication skills. I’m proud to say that I was definitely among the most enthusiastic and studious participants! The benefits of the Next Global Human Resources Development Program were not limited to improved skills. The extremely challenging nature of training encouraged participants to commiserate. As a result, we all got to know colleagues from other departments, creating a network of program participants that will surely be a valuable asset going forward. I will continue to build on what I learned in this program, as well as to polish my English so that I am ready when the opportunity to work overseas arises.
General Manager, Performance Material CS Group, Performance Material Products Group Kengo Sakamoto
Taking part in this program expanded my horizons and reinforced m VOICE y professional drive.
As a participant in the Overseas Trainee Program, I spent fiscal year 2017 at DIC (Guangzhou). While I had been to the PRC numerous times on business, taking up a post there gave me a better understanding of how Chinese people think, as well as an appreciation of historical and cultural context, which has enabled me to communicate on a deeper level in business situations. One thing I did while I was in Guangzhou was to plan a variety of cross-department recreational activities involving both local staff and staff from Japan. This activity helped me build strong professional and personal relationships with my colleagues, as a result of which I really enjoyed working together. On my days off, I also participated in get-togethers organized to help Japanese expats in Guangzhou get to know each other. There are a lot of us in the area under similar circumstances and I found the opportunity to socialize with compatriots in various businesses, industries and positions—people I would likely never have met if we were all in Japan—extremely valuable, and it encouraged me to reflect again on myself and on the Company I represent. I really believe in the value of the Overseas Trainee Program as an initiative that expands one’s horizons. I hope that many employees are able to take advantage of this challenging and rewarding opportunity in the years ahead.
High Performance Chemicals Sales Department 1, Polymers Product Division Keisuke Saji
Diversity: What I learned in India
As a participant in the Overseas Trainee Program, I spent a year working at DIC India Ltd. At first I was taken aback by the many differences between India and Japan, including the relentless 40ºC-plus temperatures every day and the crazy traffic conditions, with six cars abreast across three lanes! Perhaps the biggest hurdles I faced on the work front were how fast Indian people speak English and the basically top-down approach. It was also difficult to get local employees—who have different assumptions when it comes to the work environment—to understand the thinking behind a Japanese-style human resources system. No matter how many times I explained the system, my colleagues would dismiss it as "not up to global standards." Roadblocks such as this were understandably frustrating. I eventually realized that the only way to promote understanding of each other was through discussion, and so I started working to improve my ability to function in English, build trust and learn to argue logically. I also tried to become more tenacious, recognizing this as crucial to earning assent because Indian people love to debate! I still have a ways to go, but after a year here I feel that I have improved in all of these areas. My experience here has also taught me that respecting diversity means not judging business practices and customs as "good" or "bad," but rather having the ability to accept differences and fill in any gaps. It is also the ability to talk to people and bring them around to your point of view on issues you simply cannot concede. I also learned anew that the old adage "no man is an island" really is true. Given the top-down approach in India, the help of your superior is essential to getting things done. Today, my colleagues and I are working as a team with the goal of identifying efficient ways to work. I really believe in the value of DIC’s Overseas Trainee Program as an initiative that will expand the horizons of young employees and contribute to the further globalization of the DIC Group. Looking ahead, I hope that many employees are able to take advantage of this challenging opportunity.
In charge of Global HR Planning, General Affairs and HR Department Yuto Fujisawa
In line with its Health Management Declaration, the DIC Group works actively to support the physical and mental health of its employees, as well as to create a work environment conducive to job satisfaction. Looking ahead, the Group will continue to promote imaginative and original health management measures, recognizing that the health of its employees is essential to the realization of sustainable growth.
Framework for Promoting Health Management
The DIC Group in Japan promotes health management through a framework that is based on collaboration with the DIC Health Insurance Society and under the supervision of the president and CEO. Going forward, the Group will step up efforts to work with related organizations and promote effective initiatives across the DIC Group.
Promoting Mental Health Care
DIC takes steps to create environments in which employees feel physically and mentally supported and works to ensure that its labor management practices comply
with relevant laws. The Company places a high priority on caring for psychological and emotional well-being and has established a comprehensive mental health
program, highlights of which include engaging an in-house occupational psychologist, promoting initiatives aimed at warding off mental health problems and extending
support to ensure a smooth return to work for employees taking leave. In particular, access to counseling provided by an occupational psychologist has had a
considerably positive impact in terms of ensuring employees get treatment and are able to return to work as quickly as possible.
DIC has also offered voluntary stress checks since fiscal year 2013 and promotes active, systematic efforts with the goal of preventing mental health disorders in accordance with related legislation passed in Japan in fiscal year 2016. DIC also conducts seminars led by an in-house physician at sites that have scored above a certain level in stress checks and offers counseling aimed at helping employees improve communications with supervisors, colleagues and family members. In December 2020, online self-care training was provided by specialists to help employees deal with anxiety and uncertainty caused by restraints on social lives and changes in work styles arising from the protracted COVID-19 pandemic, as well as to strengthen the prevention and early detection of mental health disorders. DIC will pursue the continued systematic promotion of these initiatives going forward.
DIC Earns White 500 Certification
DIC earned certification in the large enterprise category of the 2021 Health & Productivity Outstanding Entities
Recognition Program (dubbed the “White 500”), which is organized by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and
Nippon Kenko Kaigi.*1 This is the fourth consecutive year the Company has been certified under this program, which
seeks to shine a spotlight on outstanding enterprises working to advance health and productivity management, creating
an environment that ensures such enterprises gain enhanced public recognition—i.e., from employees, jobseekers,
related companies and financial institutions—as organizations that approach employee health and productivity from a
management perspective and promote strategic initiatives.
In addition to looking at whether enterprises stipulate health management in their corporate mission and disclose pertinent information, the White 500 program assesses performance based on three criteria, namely, grasp of employee health-related issues and consideration of actions, establishment of a foundation for the practical implementation of health and productivity management measures and work engagement,*2 and promotion of efforts to help ensure the physical and mental health of employees.
DIC will continue to implement measures designed to promote physical and mental health as part of its commitment to creating work environments that empower employees to reach their full potential.
- Nippon Kenko Kaigi (“Japan Health Council”) is an organization that liaises with private companies, with the full backing of the government, to put effective measures in place to prolong the healthy life expectancy of citizens and to ensure sound medical services in Japan.
- A concept used to measure employees’ mental health, work engagement is described as a positive, fulfilling work-related state of mind that is characterized by vigor, dedication and absorption. “Vigor” is taking pride and experiencing a sense of satisfaction in one’s work, “dedication” is feeling strongly involved in and focused on one’s work and “absorption” is being actively engrossed in one’s work.
Initiatives to Support Employee Health
DIC analyzes the results of employees’ annual physicals and provides assistance to employees for whom lifestyle improvements have been recommended
by providing introductions to hospitals and clinics, and individual guidance on lifestyle improvements. With the aim of promoting healthy eating, the employee
cafeteria at DIC corporate headquarters in Tokyo has introduced a new healthy cafeteria menu dubbed “DIC Irodori Care+” (“DIC Colorful Care+”). DIC’s
General Affairs and HR Department, the Healthcare Office and the company responsible for the operation of
the cafeteria collaborated to develop this menu based on the health needs of employees, as well as to devise
innovative ways of presentation, including producing distinctive signage that encourages recognition and
devising names that clearly communicate the health benefits of menu selections, such as reduced calories or
low cholesterol. DIC Irodori Care+ also makes use of familiar meal components such as kobachi (small bowl)
side dishes, transformed into a nutrient-packed “Supplement Bowl,” to promote greater awareness of food’s
role in improving overall health.
The corporate headquarters’ employee cafeteria also uses Spirulina—a noted superfood* manufactured by a DIC Group company—as a core cooking ingredient.
DIC will continue implementing measures designed to help ensure the physical and mental health of its employees as part of its commitment to creating work environments in which all employees can fully exercise their abilities.
- The term “superfood” is used to describe standard foods with an excellent balance of nutrients that provide health benefits and foods containing specific nutrients and/or ingredients good for human health.
COVID-19 Countermeasures Implemented by the Corporate Headquarters’ Employee Cafeteria
The employee cafeteria at corporate headquarters in Tokyo took a variety of steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and ensure peace of mind for users.
DIC Gives Presentation at Conference of Specifi c Meal Service Facilities
With the aim of improving the nutritional management capabilities of specifi c meal service facilities (defi ned as cafeterias or restaurants with a maximum seating capacity of 250 people), the Tokyo metropolitan government stages a conference introducing case studies of such facilities. DIC, which received a fi scal year 2019 Tokyo Metropolitan Governor’s Award for Nutritional Improvement at Specifi c Meal Service Facilities, gave a presentation on its initiatives at the February 2020 conference, held at Tomin Hall in Shinjuku, representing the 10 fi scal year 2019 award winners. DIC’s presentation, titled “Helping Improve the Health of Employees,” focused on the DIC Irodori Care+ menu introduced at the corporate headquarters’ employee cafeteria and the development of innovative healthy menu items such as “Supplement Bowl.”
The corporate headquarters’ employee cafeteria has taken a variety of steps during the COVID-19 pandemic to improve operations and prevent the spread of infection.
Our company has operated the employee cafeteria at DIC’s corporate headquarters since the opening of the new DIC Building in 2015. So far, our menu has
been well received and as of February 2020 we welcomed approximately 900 guests a day and offered seven daily menu selections, including one “healthy
set” option. However, with the emergence of COVID-19 and society’s general shift to teleworking, the number of guests at the end of March was half that of the
previous month. When the fi rst state of emergency was declared in Tokyo, the number dropped to roughly 50 a day.
Given these massive changes, we had no choice but to also cut cafeteria staff by about half. This of course was a diffi cult decision, but insofar as we have been given the responsibility of running this place, we did not have a choice. But when I see our remaining staff going about their work with a smile, I am encouraged.
Despite the harsh environment, after multiple meetings with the people responsible on the DIC side, the decision was made to keep the cafeteria open— a nod to its importance to the health and energy of DIC employees. We were also able to agree on a reduced menu of four choices, which changed daily. In addition, we implemented a number of decisive measures to prevent the spread of the pandemic.
Accurately predicting the number of meals that will be needed every day has become diffi cult using conventional metrics, but we are working to adjust fl exibly
on a daily basis by asking the Company to let us know each morning how many employees are on-site that day. This has helped us reduce food loss and
unnecessary processes as much as possible.
Thanks to the understanding and cooperation of many people, we succeeded in adjusting the format of the corporate headquarters’ employee cafeteria. We will continue to increase measures taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to ensure employees are able to dine safely and with peace of mind. We will also continue exploring new offerings that will ensure a delicious and enjoyable dining experience even with the current limited menu.
Manager, Aim Services Co., Ltd. Emi Ota
DIC Group Site Employee Cafeterias Earn Smart Meal Certification
The employee cafeterias at DIC’s corporate headquarters, Osaka Branch Office and Sakai Plant earned certification in the “Meal Program” category of the fiscal year 2018 Smart Meal Program, earning the highest possible rating of three stars. The Smart Meal Program, which is administered by a consortium of 13 academic associations, including the Japanese Society of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Japanese Society of Nutrition and Food Service Management, was established to recognize restaurants, corporate facilities and other establishments that promote the continuous provision of nutritionally balanced menu options—i.e., “smart meals”—in healthy eating environments. Under the Smart Meal Program, restaurants, corporate sites and other establishments that satisfy essential requirements, which include a menu that meets Smart Meal standards and the creation of an appropriate management system and easy-to-understand efforts to communicate benefits, and 10 or more optional conditions related to the promotion of healthy diets and eating environments, earn certification with a three-star rating. Smart Meal Program certification is divided into two classes: “Wholesome” (450–650 kcal) and “Hearty” (650–850 kcal). DIC’s corporate headquarters was certified in both classifications, while the Osaka Branch Office and the Sakai Plant were certified in the “Wholesome” class. At corporate headquarters, these efforts focus on developing menus that take into account the results of annual employee health checkups. At the Osaka Branch Office, the focus is on promoting health consciousness by providing clear, age-specific information on energy consumption, while at the Sakai Plant the emphasis is on creating menus that reflect the results of employee polls and make use of regional ingredients.
DIC Earns Tokyo Metropolitan Governor’s Award for Nutritional Improvement and Specific Meal Service Facilities
In fiscal year 2019, DIC was pleased to accept a 2019 Tokyo Metropolitan Governor’s Award for Nutritional Improvement and Specific Meal Service Facilities from governor Yuriko Koike. Each year, this program evaluates the implementation of dietary guidelines and application thereof to menu items, as well as the status of efforts to enhance nutritional management, at specified meal service facilities across Tokyo and presents governor’s awards (certificates of appreciation) to those that have contributed to improved nutrition. In most years, approximately 10 such facilities are so recognized, with hospitals and care homes dominating. Business establishments received none of the 11 awards conferred in fiscal year 2018, but accounted for three of the 10 given in fiscal year 2019. DIC’s award reflected high marks given the DIC Irodori Care+ (“DIC Colorful Care+”) menu offered at the Irodori Café on the 12th floor of the Company’s corporate headquarters, and the contribution of healthy menu items such as the nutrient-rich “Supplement Bowl” and “Colorful Deli®,” developed with attention to the color of ingredients, which prompted the Chuo-ku public health department to recommend the café for an award.
I look forward to continuing to devise distinctively DIC menu options and provide meals that support employee health.
The employee cafeteria at DIC’s corporate headquarters offers Smart Meal–standard, DIC Irodori Care+, Supplement Bowl and other healthy, nutrient-rich menu options. Our efforts to contribute to employee health also include making cafeteria meals more enjoyable by introducing new choices and organizing a variety of events. In October 2019, for example, we held a blood vessel age calculation clinic, which attracted quite a few participants. This provided an opportunity for employees to think about the importance of not only diet but also awareness of one’s own body. I look forward to continuing to support employee health by devising attractive menu options and organizing events, as well as by promoting new initiatives.
Registered dietitian, Aim Services Co., Ltd. Makoto Sanpei
Ties with Employees
The DIC Group promotes a variety of initiatives to facilitate active communication with its employees around the world.
To encourage dialogue between management and employees, the Production Management Unit held site meetings at major production facilities in Japan. In February 2021, an online site meeting was held at the Kashima Plant, with the president and vice president of DIC and the general manager of the Production Management Unit participating remotely and 13 employees from production, engineering and management departments in the site’s conference room. The meeting provided an opportunity for the frank exchange of opinions on the themes of work styles that inspire job satisfaction and what an ideal production facility would be 10 years in the future. Participants actively exchanged opinions on issues affecting manufacturing in the era of COVID-19, measures to make work more rewarding and their vision for DIC 10 years in the future. Site meetings involving management and employees were subsequently held monthly, hosted by the Chiba Plant, DIC Kyushu Polymer, the Tokyo Plant and the Komaki Plant. This initiative is expected to continue going forward.
With the objective of facilitating active global communication among employees and other stakeholders worldwide, DIC and wholly owned subsidiaries Sun Chemical in the United States, DIC (China) and DIC Asia Pacific revised The DIC Way, which represents the DIC Group’s fundamental management philosophy, to enhance understanding among DIC Group employees overseas. These companies also collaborated to produce and distribute videos and handbooks to ensure The DIC Way permeates the entire organization, as well as to encourage a sense of unity. To verify the effectiveness of these efforts, the Group expanded its annual in-house survey of global Group employees, conducted using an online survey, to include questions aimed at gauging awareness of The DIC Way.
Caravan Sustainability and Branding Workshops
Having successfully staged Caravan workshops at core DIC Group facilities in Japan as part of its overall branding program, in fiscal year 2020 DIC expanded the scope of this initiative to include overseas sites. In Greater China, where a local Corporate Communications Department was recently established, a Caravan workshop for local Group employees was staged using an e-learning format to enhance understanding of Group branding initiatives.
The DIC Group publishes a quarterly internal newsletter, DIC Plaza, with the goal of enhancing communication with DIC Group employees around the world and fostering solidarity. DIC Plaza has earned high marks for its content, which seeks to advance awareness of management policies and showcase DIC Group technologies, products, businesses, people and corporate culture, as well as for its vibrant design and use of color. The Group’s intranet is another way for DIC to share information on the activities of employees worldwide, with more than 100 such items posted annually.