We are endeavoring to create an organization that enables diverse employees to carry out "Yatte Minahare" through the promotion of diversification of characteristics that they hold and respect for their differences.
Acceleration of Diversity Promotion
To continue ceaselessly in the creation of new value in 2011, we created the Diversity Promotion Section based on our belief in the importance of actively accepting and utilizing a diverse range of human resources and personnel values irrespective of nationality, age, or other attributes. Four prioritized activity areas and five prioritized initiatives were set forth in 2012.
We established the Suntory Group Vision for the purpose of creating new value through diverse perspectives and approaches to a multicultural environment in 2017 and will promote even greater diversity throughout the entire Group.
Holding Global Human Resources Conference with Overseas Group Companies
We regularly hold Global Human Resources Conference for HR managers with the participation of overseas Group companies in order to create synergy. We set specific issues for discussion such as leadership development or training of the future key talents, and based on the theme share information and organize discussions.
In addition, we are enhancing activities such as creating English web site for recruitment, holding seminars for exchange students, and organize recruitment overseas to enhance activities globally.
Holding Ambassador Program
The Ambassador Program held from 2012 consists of two parts: in the first part, the employees of our overseas Group companies visit Japan and learn about the Suntory Group’s DNA, whereas in the second part the employees from Japan are dispatched to overseas Group companies, where they participate in workshops and other activities. As of December 2017, the total number of participating employees exceeded 800 people.
The Advancement of Female Employees
The Suntory Group is aiming to increase the ratio of female employees in managerial positions to 20% by 2025. We are conducting various initiatives in Japan by defining challenges such as the awareness and transformation of prudent actions according to the provision of deliberate career advancement opportunities and early return to a full work load for employees who are raising children to continually cultivate female managers.
Employees in their fourth year of employment participate in the so-called “The Fourth Year Training” where they are asked to reflect on their lives and careers and to think of how the work productivity can be improved. We support smooth return to work and full engagement of employees who return after maternity leave by providing safety net in the form of baby-sitter programme for those employees who are unable to use daycare facilities, or by bearing the costs of baby-sitting services when a child is sick or in case of other emergency. We organize seminars before and after the maternity leave so as to raise the awareness of employees regarding their duties and to facilitate their full and early return to standard working hours.
In addition, simultaneously with the maternity leave follow-up seminars, we provide guidance to the employees’ supervisors to enhance the support from the managers to the returning employees.
As a result, we have received positive feedback that have mid- to long-term perspective such as, “My activities have been able to contribute to the entire department and I would like to act as a role model for other employees in the same situation.” Furthermore, managers support the advancement of female employees by demonstrating that they expect their future achievements.
In addition, we are conducting a Career Cafe for Female Leaders and Facilitation of External Seminars that target employees one step away from management because deliberate career advancement opportunities should be enhanced for both awareness and skills. This has become an opportunity to build further awareness about the challenges through means such as listening to the experience of managers who act as role models and the interaction with other participants both inside and outside of the company.
We are also working to strengthen networks and stimulate change in a way employees think through the efforts of female members of our management by holding female manager forums and networking boards for all women managers.
We are also actively promoting cooperation with external parties such as the New Generation of Women in Sales College to facilitate ongoing participation over the four years since 2014 as well as Networking Events for Young Sales Women Across Various Industries in sales departments which require even further support.
Through these activities in Japan, the ratio of female employees in management positions has increased to 9.3% at the end of 2017. We are continuing to innovate working styles and change awareness to realize a company that is an easy place to work and allows our employees to succeed.
Female employment data
Number of male and female employees by Management or Non-management position
*December 31, 2017
*This is the total of Suntory Holdings Ltd. and Suntory Beverage & Food Ltd.
Promoting LGBT Activities
The Suntory Group continues to engage in LGBT activities with the aim of becoming a company where every employee can be themselves and work enthusiastically. We have launched a project team in 2016 to strengthen our LGBT initiatives. In 2017, we furthered inclusion with efforts which included the revision of employment regulations to include same sex partners in the definition for spouse, the setup of a consultation office for LGBT employees, the creation of an LGBT handbook for LGBT employees and allies as well as e-learning for all employees.
These activities have been award the highest rank of Gold in the PRIDE INDEX*1 advocated by work with Pride*2, which evaluates initiatives for sexual minorities including LGBT in the policies of organizations such as corporations and association.
*1This index is broken down into five categories: 1. Policy, 2. Representation, 3. Inspiration, 4. Development, and 5. Engagement/Empowerment. This is the first index for LGBT in Japan established in 2016.
*2This organization supports the promotion and implementation of diversity management for LGBT and other sexual minorities. work with Pride aims to share information and provide opportunities for each company to actively engage in diversity promotion to help build workplaces where LGBT people can be themselves while working at Japanese companies.
Employing Persons with Disabilities
The Suntory Group is working to expand the possibilities for persons with disabilities by employing them without considering job type. We actively engage in activities such as opening special contact point for candidates with disabilities, advertising announcements for new graduate and mid-career candidates, and cooperating with Hello Work. In addition, we have advanced job development at all group companies and started Group-wide employment guidance sessions in 2012. The rate of employment for persons with disabilities as of June 1, 2015 was 2.46% at Suntory Holdings Ltd. (employing 94 persons with disabilities with 37 persons with severe disabilities) and 2.10% at Suntory Beverage & Food Ltd. (employing 34 persons with disabilities with 18 persons with severe disabilities).
We have held an internship for students who are intellectually disabled since 2014 to further promote their utilization and 14 people have entered the company over the last four years up to April 2018. The team has been further expanding the areas where it is active with the goal of putting into practice operational support as well as diversity and inclusion throughout the entire Suntory Group as the Collaborative Center as of April 2018.
Number of employees with disabilities and employment rate (as of June 1, 2017)
*SHD: Suntory Holdings Ltd.
*SBF: Suntory Beverage & Food Ltd.
Introduction of Disability Support Leave Policy
We introduced the Disability Support Leave Policy in 2013 based on our desire to create an energetic environment more able to utilize persons with disabilities. Five days a year are given as special leave to people who have a disability certificate. This policy can be used regardless of whether an employee works on a full-time or a part-time basis. A handbook has also been created and distributed to support managers supervising persons with disabilities.
We are furthering the building of an easier-to-work environment while promoting the employment of persons with disabilities now and into the future.
Extension of Retirement to Age 65
The employment needs of individuals after retirement are estimated to grow in the future due to economic reasons after policy revisions such as an increase in the age people may start receiving national pensions as well as a growing desire to continue working. The technical ability and skill that people who have reached retirement age have accumulated are valuable assets from the perspective of the company.
The Suntory Group has introduced the Extension of Retirement to Age 65 policy in April 2013 to more widely utilize the experience and high-level skills which senior-level employees have accumulated over many years in addition to responding to the employment needs of employees over the age of 60. This new policy assists employees over the age of 60 to acquire one of three certifications (expert certification, member certification, support certification) that have been newly established according to the certifications and position the person has reached by the age of 60. In addition, we have introduced an assessment of results and prudent actions based on the target management policy even for individuals over the age of 60. The items for the assessment of prudent actions are operational contribution and next generation contribution. Moreover, we are periodically holding Life Plan Seminars that review life after retirement in addition to providing opportunities to think about a senior career at Career Workshops that are always taken by employees while they are in their 50s.
We will keep tapping into the knowledge of veteran employees who have accumulated the wealth of experience over the years, and provide them with all necessary support.
Suntory Holdings Ltd. published the "Irodori" Suntory Group Diversity Correspondence Magazine for employees in Japan
The "Irodori" Suntory Group Diversity Correspondence Magazine was published for all of our employees in 2015 as a way of self-reform of the mindset of each and every employee in Japan, which is one of the five prioritized initiatives. This magazine was published for the purpose of understanding the importance of diversity and connecting to the prudent actions of individuals by introducing examples of diversity that are happening on the ground. Examples introduced up until now include "Messages from management executives", "Initiatives at sales and production sites", and "Employees with disabilities". In addition, we have held voluntary Diversity Seminars for employees. Various themes such as disability, nursing care, child rearing by men, and the LGBT community have been covered as themes for "changing working style starting from [theme]" to encourage the transition to prudent actions by individuals. We will continue to accelerate diversity awareness by periodically communicating related information throughout the company.
Evaluation from External Parties
Suntory has been reviewed as follows by external parties as a result of these initiatives.
Diversity Management Selection 100
An initiative started in 2012 by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry that evaluates and selects companies of various sizes from different industries for their initiatives in diversity management as management able to contribute to economic growth. Furthermore, it aims to promote the spread of diversity through the communication with selected companies as best practices.
2018 J-win Diversity Award Honors Suntory with the Semi-Grand Prize for Advancement and Development of Women
The Diversity Award has been held by NPO J-Win since 2008. J-Win assesses the progress of diversity and inclusion promotion on an absolute scale at each company as well as a relative evaluation of progress to present awards for the purpose of accelerating diversity and inclusion promotion in Japanese companies by commemorating companies leading diversity and inclusion policy.