Human Resource Management

1. Philosophy

(1) Policy

We, JSR Group, specify our responsibilities to employees within our management policies.

  • Evaluation and rewards based on fair standards
  • Continuous opportunities to grow by challenging themselves
  • Acceptance of the diversity of fellow colleagues and to be provided a place where all employees can work together as a team

We established 4C Course of Action for our employees consisting of Challenge, Communication, Collaboration and Cultivation.

Based on this corporate philosophy system, our human resources strategy states, "maximize value (provision) to customers and markets, linking efforts for the enhancement of corporate activity efficiency and business competitiveness and the creation of innovation, by maintaining a global perspective and strengthening dynamic and diverse human resources and organizational capabilities according to the characteristics of countries, regions, and businesses.” We have formulated the following as our ideal corporate and organizational culture, and we are advancing various measures.

JSR’s Ideal Corporate and Organizational Culture

  • By respecting diversity, equity and inclusion and having employees autonomously build their own careers, all employees are maximizing their abilities.
  • By ensuring employees and the company trust one another and growing together, employee engagement continues to increase resulting in continuous innovation.

4C Course of Action

4C Course of Action
  • CHALLENGE: All employees of JSR Group should share a common, global focus and desire to succeed. Employees should feel confident to autonomously take on new challenges, learning from successes while viewing setbacks as opportunities to learn, grow and improve.
  • COMMUNICATION: All employees should feel comfortable and confident maintaining open lines of bi-directional communication at all levels within JSR Group. Employees should strive for organizational transparency through direct conversations as the best means to share value and achieve common goals, especially in the face of growth and diversification.
  • COLLABORATION: Employees will work together in the spirit of cooperation, valuing common, corporate goals over internal or departmental barriers. Employees will also be encouraged to actively collaborate with external resources and not be bound to conventional ideas.
  • CULTIVATION: All employees will cultivate an environment that supports bi-directional communication between managers and subordinates and provides opportunities to develop together as individuals and as members of productive, supportive teams.

(2) Codes of Conduct

  • We shall ensure the fair treatment of employees, based on each person’s tasks, roles, and level of commitment.
  • We shall respect the diversity of our workforce and make efforts to create a workplace environment that enables every employee to make the best use of their abilities and to find a rewarding sense of satisfaction in their work.
  • We shall respect the human rights and diverse characteristics of all individuals, and shall not discriminate against gender, age, nationality, race, ethnic group, origin, religion, beliefs, social status, physical disability, sexual orientation, or other relevant conditions when determining employment status and/or working conditions.
  • We shall not force religion and/or belief on others.
  • We shall provide a workplace free from any harassment arising from positions of power. In addition, we will not engage in any form of sexual harassment, such as behavior and verbal comments with sexual connotations that will make others feel uncomfortable.
  • In the event that a staff member reports the violation or possible violation of the law and/or the Principles of Corporate Ethics to his / her superiors and / or internal / external hotline, we shall fully protect the said staff member’s identity and protect him or her from unfavorable treatment.

2. Advancement Structure

The Human Resources Development Department and Career Development Team take the lead on employee training. They formulate and advance company-wide training plans while working closely with others through the various personnel systems, personnel conferences held by each level of management, and other means. The person in charge of training in each division and the head of each location plan and manage implementation of specialized training specific to each department and office.

Advancement Structure

3. Increasing Employee Engagement

JSR Group believes that increasing employee engagement is the key to sustaining corporate activities and enhancing corporate value. Toward this end, based on the establishment of a culture of diversity, equity and inclusion, we are working to increase engagement by creating a comfortable and rewarding workplace, providing opportunities for employees to take on proactive challenges, build their careers, grow and play an active role.

At the same time, we have been conducting a global employee engagement survey since FY2021 to listen to the frank voices of employees, identify issues in each organization, and effectively work to create a better work environment.

Initiatives in FY2022

The global response rate, which was 82% in the first year, rose to 89% in the FY2022 survey. While the number of employees in the Elastomer Business decreased significantly due to the business transfer, the number of participants in the survey increased significantly following the expansion in the target Group companies, careful explanations and cooperation with each company, and increasing awareness among employees.

In addition, based on the results of the first year, we improved the survey content and decreased the number of questions to rebuild the foundation for continuous improvement of employee engagement in the future.

An analysis of the overall survey results revealed positive aspects of the Group, such as business execution (delegation of authority/business processes), expectations for innovation, and respect for individuals, and we reaffirmed that these are the strengths of the Group.

On the other hand, in order to continuously increase employee engagement going forward, we found that there are two common global issues: first, making employees feel the company has a promising future and second, making employees feel that they can achieve their career goals at JSR.

In addition, each Group company and department shares their own scores, interprets and discusses them with all members, and formulates improvement actions using a bottom-up approach. In FY2022, we saw many initiatives related to career and company policies around the globe.

We will continue to conduct the survey on a regular basis and work to improve employee engagement by implementing continual improvements from both the top down and bottom up while carefully examining the appropriateness of such actions and reflecting them in measures.

Initiatives in Japan

In addition to common global issues, quantitative and qualitative analyses, especially in Japan, have revealed two-way communication between management and employees as an issue. After discussions at the Executive Committee, we have set the "Communication Series," in which management disseminates information on JSR Group's strategies, future policies, expectations for employees, and other issues, and exchanges opinions at dialogue meetings, as a high priority top-down action.

Going forward, we will continue to provide opportunities for communication from management and dialogue with employees to foster a sense of unity within JSR Group.

Main initiatives in Communication Series and officer dialogue
Main initiatives in Communication Series and officer dialogue

Initiatives in North America

In North America, we launched the Every Person Influences Culture (EPIC) conversation series as one of our initiatives to increase employee engagement. EPIC is an online event in which employees from various parts of JSR Group participate and discuss with management specific topics that will strengthen and support JSR Group employees so that they can reach their full potential. EPIC is a meaningful opportunity to listen to the opinions of others and learn specific actions that each individual should take in order to realize a workplace where diversity, equity and inclusion is firmly established.

4. Human Resource Development

(1) Goal of Human Resource Development and Ideal Personnel Traits

We have set the goal of human resource development as "to establish a mechanism and corporate culture in which the company and individuals grow together, and to develop human resources who can realize our corporate philosophy of Materials Innovation,” and have set “ideal personnel traits” to target.

  • Human resources able to take on the challenge of new value creation utilizing various experiences using unconventional approaches
  • Human resources who can think from a global perspective in everything they do
  • Human resources who can grow together and actively collaborate/cooperate internally and externally while emphasizing two-way communication
  • Human resources who embrace each other and different ways of thinking transcending differences in terms of gender, culture, generation and age, etc.
  • Human resources with their own career vision who can contribute to the company/society and their own self-actualization by taking action proactively.

(2) Human Resource Development Philosophy

The foundation of the company is the growth of our employees. JSR has established the following elements as its human resource development policy. The purpose is to develop human resources who are consistent with the company’s corporate philosophy and medium and long-term business objectives, increase the value of each employee through encouraging self-led career development, and enable employees to fully utilize their abilities.
1) Provide sufficient support for employees to focus on their own desire to grow and take the initiative in improving their own skills and building their careers.
2) Developing and cultivating the abilities of employees is the foundation of the company. The greatest priority is growth through work. Structured, systematic, ongoing training is provided to supplement this from a company-wide, long-term perspective.

Definition of Self-Led Career Development

Self-led Career Development Equals Proactive Career Vision and Sustainable Actions Toward Career Realization

To draw a personal work-life career vision, and to grow and increase one's value through sustained action to realize this vision and all the experiences gained from the process, for the betterment of one's life.

(3) Mechanisms and Specific Measures Relating to HR Development

Human resource development and education (training) at JSR is based on the Employee Training Guide, which specifies the training policy, training structure, and matters related to implementation.
The Employee Training Guide positions 1) on-the-job training (OJT), 2) support for self-education, and 3) off-the-job training (OFF-JT) as the three pillars of human resources development.
Based on the view that Human Resource Development = Skill & Know-How x Motivation, we work to develop both skills & know-how and the motivation & drive of human resources, and to further improve organizational capabilities.

Overall Image of JSR Human Resource Development Structure
Overall Image of JSR Human Resource Development Structure

(1) OJT

The greatest priority is growth through work via on-the-job training. We have produced the Seven Articles of OJT (Trainer’s Edition) and the Three Articles of OJT (Trainee’s Editions) and are using these to develop human resources through work at each workplace.

(2) Support for Self-education

We have established the following systems to support self-education:

  • Correspondence course system: Once an employee has completed a voluntary correspondence course selected from menu of 250 courses the company has selected, the company will pay roughly 50% of the course fee as a subsidy.
  • Public certification course system: The company will pay testing fees, course fees, and the cost of course texts to employees who have acquired certifications necessary for their work.
  • External training support system: The company will pay part or all of the course fees for external courses employees have taken that are necessary for their work.

(3) OFF-JT (Training)

We provide the following off-the-job training to augment on-the-job training.

Grade level-based training

Training in the common knowledge and skills considered necessary for skill qualifications or for each job grade level, from a company-wide perspective.

Job-based training

Training in the specialized knowledge and skills needed for each job for career building and to improve work efficiency.

  • Specialized skill training: For engineers and technical staff, this includes plant training in common skills, safety training, quality control training, technology management training, and R&D environmental safety training. For administrative staff, it includes external courses on management strategies, accounting, finance, and other areas.
  • Courses on handing down technological expertise: Expertise on the past business activities of JSR is shared among employees, including understanding of the past history, background on initiatives, techniques for problem identification and control, problem points, discussion of failures and tips for succeeding. We pass on the good DNA of JSR and have employees utilize it in the future business activities of each department.
Objective-based Training

For issues that should be addressed on a company-wide level, we narrow down the objectives and focus on the needs.

  • Language training: To develop language skills and the mindset for global response, we support short-term language study abroad (in English and Chinese), and hold conversation classes in English and Chinese.
  • Overseas research dispatch: Employees voluntarily perform research at universities and research institutions overseas for up to two years to improve research skills and learn challenging and innovative new technologies useful for future business creation and technological innovation.
  • Dispatch for MBA/MOT: Employees acquire MBAs and MOTs at graduate schools in Japan while working their normal jobs.
  • Life planning/management seminars: Employees around the ages of 51 to 52 have the opportunity to think about their lives after retirement by learning about the three pillars of life planning: 1) career development plan, 2) lifelong economic plan, and 3) health management.

Other training

  • Training content is the same for all domestic Group companies and the employees of domestic Group companies also participate in training conducted by JSR. JSR is working to develop human resources for the entire Group.
  • Some training is provided online, depending on the training objectives.
  • To promote the advancement of women, the Diversity Development Office provides training to managerial level employees who have female subordinates, sends them to external training (the NPO, J-Win), and provides other training opportunities. Click here for more information.
  • As part of our efforts to promote digital transformation (DX), we provide training in data science to employees who will be the next generation of leaders, training in programming to young engineers and technical staff, and an introductory course in data literacy to young administrative staff.

(4) Developing the Next Generation of Leaders

As globalization and digitalization progress, the demands made of leaders are changing. At JSR, we have been providing the “Training the next generation of leaders” course with external cooperation since 2007. This course is focused on development of the next generation of leaders. The training teaches participants established practices, the essentials of digital management, and other necessary business skills through discussions based on actual cases. Participants also expand their perspective by imagining that they are in the position of a superior, thinking about what is important from a management perspective, and outlining a vision for their own departments. Those who have taken this training include people who are already officers and the training is steadily generating diverse human resources who are equipped to look beyond the present and spur innovation themselves.

(5) Career Development Program (CDP)

As part of its nurturing and career development for young employees, JSR established and runs the Career Development Program (CDP). CDP is a job rotation program for university graduates on the management track. Since introducing the program in 1988, we have continued to improve and refine this method of training.

The program is for employees up to their 10th year with the company who are able to work for a number of different departments. This program not only produces employees with diverse and broad horizons, but also leads to increased inter-departmental communication. In terms of career development, CDP gives participants the opportunity to think about their own careers and facilitates autonomous career building for the future.

To consider transfers under CDP, CDP Committee members individually interview employees who will enter CDP before discussing individual rotation plans at a general CDP meeting, which are also based on a comprehensive view toward the employee’s desires and aptitude. The Human Resources Department runs the CDP Committee, and each General Manager is a committee member.

(6) Self-evaluation System

We established a self-evaluation system in which individuals report frankly on how they view the status of the work they are currently responsible for and their future vision and career ambitions for themselves. This system plays a role in the career development of participating employees and increasing engagement. Skill development objectives are set for the coming year through discussion between the individual and his or her superior based on feedback from wage assessment results, skill development results during the past year, and the individual’s self-evaluation. As a result, using this system, we conduct systematic and efficient skill development to achieve self-realization, skill improvement, and autonomous career development, as well as human resource development that is important for both the individual and the company.

(7) Training Programs

JSR conducts a variety of training programs to raise the skills of its employees.
The total annual training time and education cost per JSR employee was as follows.

  2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total training time (hr) 49,671 64,334 43,624 34,591 17,828
Training time per person (hr) 14.7 18.7 12.4 10.1 8.3
Total cost of education/training (thousand yen) 108,189 148,711 115,513 120,628 102,612
Education/training cost per person (yen) 32,037 43,130 32,900 35,148 47,616

Note: This total was calculated by including technology and skill training, stratified training programs, and other training organized by human resources departments. It therefore does not include hours spent in education provided independently by departments or external education. Additionally, it does not include educational hours based on e-Learning.

The status on providing core training is shown below.

Training Total number of participants (people) Total hours of training (hr) Cost of education/training (thousand yen) Training objectives and content
Grade level-based Education 617 10,468 60,200 We are working to provide the basic knowledge and mindset needed for each grade level in JSR (managerial level, supervisor, new employee, etc.). Along with this, we are providing basic training aimed at those types of human resources that we need but are difficult to develop through the on-the-job training (OJT) in each workplace alone. More specifically, this means developing human resources who can logically state their own opinions even when among people having diverse views, lead everyone to identify the issues and arrive at a consensus from mutual debate of conflicting opinions, and guide the organization to resolution of the issues while involving those concerned.
Technical Training Common to all Plants 186 2,372 341 We provide systematic education on safety, environment, facilities, manufacturing processes, and other knowledge necessary to handle manufacturing operations at JSR, mainly for employees involved in manufacturing and technology departments and other areas of manufacturing. This does not end with learning about the topics mentioned above. One of the objectives is “T-shaped” human resource development that delves deeply into specialized knowledge and expands to related knowledge.
Miniature Plant Training and Safety Education 72 245 364 We provide experience-based, hands-on training using a miniature plant in the Yokkaichi area, and work to improve knowledge, technical skills, and sensitivity to security management. We are also working on revising the educational system diagram, creating a skill map for safety education, and establishing a safety education curriculum.
Quality Control Education 121 1,498 1,250 Employees are learning practical quality control methods through lectures on the basic philosophy on quality control, exercises using internal data, and other means. We also provide education on basic statistical methods using statistics software, gauge analysis, control chart techniques, process capability analysis, etc. to improve data analysis skills and for implementing statistical quality control.

Note: Nearly all technical training common to all plants, miniature plant training and safety education, and quality control education is conducted by internal instructors or alumni. We provide instructor training to improve the instruction techniques of these internal instructors and alumni.

We have established training centers near our Head Office and in the Yokkaichi area to create an environment that can provide continual educational support to employees. We are using these training centers to focus on further refining our strengths in technology and developing human resources by passing on technical skills at manufacturing sites and expanding employee education programs.

Yokkaichi Training Center
Yokkaichi Training Center
Miniature Plant in Yokkaichi Training Center
Miniature Plant in Yokkaichi Training Center
Head Office Training Center (JSR Roppongi Club)
Head Office Training Center (JSR Roppongi Club)

The following types of original educational programs and symposiums are also held at domestic Group companies.

Techno-UMG Co., Ltd.: Short-term study abroad in the U.S.

This program is designed to develop human resources equipped to support global business operations overseas. The three-month program involves learning the mechanisms of company operation and management at the U.S. subsidiary while studying at a language school in the U.S.

Techno-UMG Co., Ltd.: Business Training

Techno-UMG Co., Ltd. has been conducting selective business training since FY2022. The training consists of two phases. Phase 1 involves systematically learning the management skills required for business leaders. Phase 2 utilizes what participants learned in Phase 1 to think about what will be important to the company in the future from a management perspective, identify an ideal state, and formulate the necessary business strategies to achieve it.

MEDICAL & BIOLOGICAL LABORATORIES CO., LTD.: Takato Molecular Cell Biology Symposium

This symposium has been held since 1989 and facilitates interaction with researchers who are leading global biological research. The 33rd Symposium was held in FY2022. The free-ranging discussions include presenters and participants of all generations and lead to opportunities to gain new perspectives and motivation.

5. Personnel System

(1) Rank System

Under the career-track system, we have established a skills-based qualification system that specifies qualification grades corresponding to employees’ abilities. Skill standards established for each qualification also clarify the standards for the type of human resource, ability, and treatment. For employees of higher ranks, we also apply a job rank system that establishes ranks corresponding to given duties (i.e., responsibilities in the organization and performance responsibilities).

In April 2022, we revised the personnel system for managerial level positions by establishing role-based grading system to create an environment and culture where fair treatment of diverse employees and organizations enables them to demonstrate their best performance and to ensure that JSR continues to be a company that is chosen by employees and external human resources. We also review grades in accordance with changes in the organization, and change and apply grades due to transfers as appropriate.

(2) Assessment System

We have introduced an evaluation system for all employees with indefinite employment, which leads to fair treatment, career development, and increased engagement.

We conduct assessments of abilities and results fairly and regularly by employing two systems. One is an “ability assessment system” that designates the specific behavioral characteristics of abilities required for each qualification grade in individual job categories and then assesses demonstrated abilities based on those standards. The other is an “objective management system” that assesses the degree to which a person has achieved objectives that were determined at the beginning of the fiscal year.

The ability assessment system evaluates the abilities demonstrated in the six functional categories of task definition, task execution, organizational leadership and management, creativity, interpersonal skills, and growth mindset. Because the behavioral characteristics required differ according to the job category, these six functional categories are weighted according to the job category.

In these assessments, work performance objectives (work standards) are clearly established, the performance of the objectives is monitored, and employees meet regularly with superiors to properly assess the results. This system achieves improvement in the quality of work assigned, ensures reasonable treatment, and is designed to systematically develop work skills through the day-to-day performance of work.

In addition, for managerial level employees who revised the system, we conduct evaluations according to their roles, divided into behavioral evaluations that assess process aspects and performance evaluations that assess performance aspects.

Assessment System

(3) Philosophy concerning Wages and Working Hours

JSR Group strictly complies with the legally established minimum wage of each country and region, and provides wages that are based on fair assessments of employees. JSR Group naturally strives to be legally compliant in terms of working hours. We also endeavor to provide appropriate labor management with the aim of avoiding long working hours and to help employees enjoy a proper work-life balance.
See below for data on the wage gap between men and women at JSR Corporation.

Wage Gap between Men and Women (%) ※1 ※2
Permanent employees Non-permanent employees All employees
72.1% 63.8% 71.9%
  • *1 Calculated based on the provisions of the Act on the Promotion of Women's Active Engagement in Professional Life (Act No. 64 of 2015). In addition, seconded employees are counted as employees of the dispatching organization.
  • *2 Hiring, evaluation, promotion, etc. is conducted fairly regardless of gender, nationality, age, etc. There is no difference in wages between men and women for equal work. There are differences, though, depending on the composition of the number of people by qualification.

(4) Employee Awards Program

We use various awards programs to enhance employees’ motivation.

  • Among the awards presented are the President’s Award, Production and Technology Award, Research and Development Award, Environment Distinguished Service Award, special commendations, length-of-service commendations, and “zero accidents” commendations.