Labor practices

Maintaining a Favorable Working Environment

Basic Policy

Japan's working population is expected to dramatically decrease in conjunction with its aging and declining population, and there is apt to be a further increase in the number of employees, both men and women, who work while caring for children or elderly members of their family. In order for Mitsubishi Electric to survive through the tough international competition and realize sustainable growth under these circumstances, it will be essential to create a working environment where all employees can work to their full potential within their limited time.

Various initiatives are in place at Mitsubishi Electric to create a working environment where all employees can work actively while maintaining a good work-life balance.

Initiatives to Prevent Recurrence of Work-Related Issues

The Mitsubishi Electric Group has experienced work-related issues that affected employees’ lives or mental and physical health. Although the Group implemented prevention measures on each occasion, another work-related issue occurred in fiscal 2020. We took this seriously, deeply regretted that our past initiatives had not been sufficient, and determined preventive measures including new initiatives.
The Group considers the prevention of recurrence of work-related issues as its top management priority, and as a whole, makes every effort to create a work environment where all the employees can maintain mental and physical health and work actively with a sense of security. Specifically, the Group will work together to deploy a variety of measures to reform the workplace, including measures to respond to power harassment and mental health issues, to prevent long working hours and to properly manage working hours.

Item Initiatives
Workplace reforms
(measures to respond to power harassment)
(measures to respond to mental health issues)
Deployment of the Mitsubishi Electric Workplace Reform Program
  • Enhance anti-harassment education and strengthening of evaluation when assigning leaders, including managers
  • Quantitative workplace analysis through attitude survey and continuous improvement based on analysis results
  • Enhance measures to identify and address the workload and mental conditions of individuals at an early stage
  • Engage in thorough and appropriate care of employees with mental health issues (Inspect operations and thoroughly reimplement Mitsubishi Electric Return to Work Support Guidelines)
  • Enhance consultation channels (establishment of multiple channels), etc.
Measures against long working hours
  • Reduce long working hours and continue proper tracking of working hours
  • Implement appropriate health measures such as consultation by company medical advisors

Create a Work Environment Where All the Employees can Work Actively with a Sense of Security

Mitsubishi Electric will take the following measures under the Mitsubishi Electric Workplace Reform Program, aiming at creating a workplace where employees can openly communicate with one another, thorough and appropriate care of employees with mental health issues, and other goals. We particularly focus on creating a workplace with zero tolerance to power harassment.
We will strongly promote this program as a project activity under the direct responsibility of the president.
99% of Mitsubishi Electric employees, including those who work for the affiliates in Japan, attended the harassment seminars conducted in fiscal 2020 for all employees.

Mitsubishi Electric Workplace Reform Program

Action Main measures
(1) Enhance education on harassment such as power harassment, and strengthening evaluation when assigning leaders including managers 1) Enhance education on harassment and make it obligatory for all employees to attend the seminar
2) Shed light on harassment when training managers and staff in charge of education when assigning new employees and thoroughly implement more appropriate development and guidance
3) Sufficiently evaluate candidates to see if they have basic idea of labor management (such as understanding which actions constitute harassment actions) before assigning a manager or leader.
4) Remind all employees that perpetrators of power harassment will be subject to severe measures.
(2) Engage in quantitative workplace analysis through attitude surveys and ongoing improvement based on analysis results 1) Conduct attitude surveys on workplace targeting all employees and an organization diagnosis in light of the survey every year.
2) Endeavor to solve the challenges recognized during the survey, taking opinions of outside experts into consideration, and continue to improve workplace through the PDCA cycle.
(3) Enhance measures to identify and address the workload and mental condition of individuals at an early stage 1) Conduct a questionnaire survey to check the workload, workplace human relationships, stress status, and other problems of individuals every month to identify and address changes in feeling at an early stage. (This survey currently targets new employees but will target all employees in the future.)
2) Increase periodic interviews with the human resources division after assigning new employees to the workplace.
(4) Engage in thorough and appropriate care of employees with mental health issues Work-related issues tend to occur after an employee with mental health issues comes back to work. Therefore, we inspect the operation of the existing Mitsubishi Electric Return to Work Support Guidelines*1 and thoroughly re-implement the guidelines to especially focus on the care of those with mental health issues.
1) During leave of absence
The supervisor and the human resources division will carefully explain how the employee in question will be treated during a leave of absence to the relevant employee so that he or she can concentrate on the medical treatment.
For example, the supervisor and the human resources division periodically interview the relevant employee to track the situation to the extent that the treatment is not hindered.
2) When the employee comes back to work after leave of absence
Follow considerations at return to work (such as limitations on work) based on the opinions of the company medical advisor.
For example, all employees across the workplace may also share how to accept the employee who comes back.
(5) Enhance consultation channels (establishment of multiple channels), etc. 1) Start a new counseling service by an outside counselor in cases where an employee wants to consult an outside specialist face to face.
2) Start a mentor system for troubled employees to consult someone at the workplace with whom they do not have a supervisor-subordinate relationship in order to create an environment where they can easily talk about their problems.
3) Assign multiple training supporters to receive consultations from new employees, so that each employee can select someone whom he or she is comfortable with consulting.
4) Further enhance training courses that contribute to the improvement of the employees' stress management capability such as resilience education*2.
  1. *1 Created referring to the "Guidance for Supporting Workers Who Return to Work after Taking a Leave due to Mental Health Issues," published by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.
  2. *2 Training program to enhance people’s capabilities to successfully address stress and adverse circumstances and recover

Prevention of Long Working Hours and Proper Management of Working Hours

Mitsubishi Electric determined "Work Style Reforms" as an important management policy in April 2016 to create a workplace environment in which everyone can maintain physical and mental health and work in good spirits with a good work-life balance and has promoted a variety of measures that contribute to reduction in total working hours, proper management of working hours, and improvement of operational efficiency and productivity. Specifically, the Company has spread policies and raised awareness though messages from the President to employees and other activities, while establishing an environment for efficient business operation; for example, by distributing laptop PCs to all employees, enhancing online meeting facilities, and expanding the work-from-home program. Meanwhile, we have attempted to properly manage working hours in line with reality by automatically calculating working hours from objective data such as the entry/exit time and PC logon/logoff time.

We believe that these efforts have paid off to some extent. Specifically, while employees' working hours have been significantly reduced, the percentage of employees who responded that they had a good work-life balance in the employee attitude survey has increased over time. To further increase effectiveness, we will continue to promote "Work Style Reforms" in the future. We also implement in a reliable manner health measures for employees in light of properly tracked working hours.

"Work Style Reforms"

"Work Style Reforms" - To the Next Stage -

document: "Work Style Reforms" internal poster

"Work Style Reforms" internal poster

Since fiscal 2017, Mitsubishi Electric has driven "Work Style Reforms" as one of its management policies. This reform aims to transform the corporate culture to more focus on results and efficiency and to reform the job attitude to stop praising excessively long working hours and create a work environment where everyone can work actively. In fiscal 2021, we will move to the next stage and deepen the initiatives, especially focusing on work style reform and work quality improvement, with the slogan, "Kaeru! MELCO (Kaeru is a Japanese word that, depending on how it is written, means both to make changes and to go home)."

Our slogan from fiscal 2021, "Kaeru! MELCO" means that Mitsubishi Electric will change (kaeru) the work style and the way of business operations to create new value and reduce working hours so that employees can go home (kaeru) early to enrich both their business and private lives with an ultimate goal of creating a workplace where all the employees can work actively.
The activity policies under "Kaeru! MELCO" are to repeat a virtuous cycle of enriching both business and private lives by deepening workplace communication and by streamlining business operations and enhancing their quality.

The Mitsubishi Electric Group promotes creating a workplace with open communication where each employee can vigorously work, maintaining mental and physical health. The whole Group makes every effort toward this goal.

Outcome of previous activities

We started the Work Style Reforms in fiscal 2017 and have promoted a variety of measures that contribute to reductions in working hours, proper working hours management, and work quality improvement.

As a result, we reduced monthly overtime hours per employee by 13% from fiscal 2017 and the percentage of employees who responded that they had a good work-life balance increased by 10% according to the employee attitude survey in fiscal 2020.

  • graph: Percentage of employees who responded that they had a good work-life balance (Employee Attitude Survey)

    Percentage of employees who responded that they had a good work-life balance (Employee Attitude Survey)

  • graph: Changes in the number of employees who worked more than 80 hours of overtime a month (including managers)

    Changes in the number of employees who worked more than 80 hours of overtime a month (including managers)

  • graph: Changes in monthly overtime hours per employee (including managers)

    Changes in monthly overtime hours per employee (including managers)

Examples of office-specific activities

  • Lectures for management personnel by external lecturers
  • Establishing conference rules (50 minutes as a rule, no meetings to be held after 5 p.m., etc.)
  • Introducing condensed work times
  • Introducing "Refresh Wednesday" to promote work-life balance

At Mitsubishi Electric, Head Office management departments play a central role in improving the quality of company-wide operations by promoting the following specific measures.

  1. Developing an IT environment
    • Introducing tablets and eliminating paper documents from executive meetings
    • Providing mobile terminals to employees in all offices who need them
    • Implementing of video conferences for meetings between remote offices and reduction of business trips
    • Realizing flexible working styles by expanding the work-from-home program
    • Promoting the use of work smartphones outside the company (schedule confirmation, verification tasks, etc.)
  2. Simplifying and reducing company-wide documents
    • Promoting initiatives for expansion of RPA
    • Simplifying documents by shortening discussion times and schedules in management meetings
    • Reducing the number of periodic reports (weekly reports, monthly reports, etc.) issued by each department
    • Reviewing report formats
  3. Promoting indirect JIT Kaizen activities
    • Promoting improvement activities suitable for each workplace through activities in small groups
    • Analyzing operations by external consultants and implementing JIT Kaizen activities company-wide

President's Forum

To accelerate the promotion of office Work Style Reforms, the "President's Forum" meeting began in February 2017 as a president-employee conversation opportunity.

The president explains to employees the objective and focus of actions surrounding Work Style Reforms, which is a key management policy, and accepts a wide range of inputs from employees such as issues they face in promoting reform and opinions and requests on corporate matters. The president will incorporate these inputs to develop more effective measures.

  • photo: President's Forum

    President's Forum

  • photo: President's Forum

VOICE (Corporate Human Resources Div. member)

photo: Hiroko Morisaki

Hiroko Morisaki
Manager
CP-Plan Promotion Center
Corporate Human Resources Div.
Mitsubishi Electric Corporation

It has been five years since the start of the activities. This initiative has so far brought results such as reductions in working hours and improvement of the way work is done through an increase in users of internal IT tools and the work from home program.

We will not limit the "Work Style Reforms" to activities to improve the operational efficiency or reduce working hours. We will deepen the initiative, focusing on work style reform and work quality improvement, and aim to create a workplace where all employees can work in good spirits.

Support for Flexible Working Styles

Development and availability of childcare and family-care programs in Japan

Mitsubishi Electric is making every effort to fully establish a work-life balance support system that more than satisfies the legal requirements, and to develop workplace conditions that allow employees to comfortably do their jobs and raise children or care for elderly family members. Our childcare leave program can be extended to the month of March following the child's first birthday (or to the first end of March following the child’s second birthday if there is a special circumstance). We also have a program that allows employees to work shorter hours when raising their children, and this program can be extended up until the end of March in the year the child graduates from elementary school. Our family-care leave program allows employees with families that meet the requirements to take a leave of absence for more than three years. It also allows employees to work shorter hours for up to three years to help them take care of their families. In addition, we have a temporary leave system for employees who wish to undergo fertility treatment to support the development of the next generation. There is also a program to provide the spouse with special paid leave (self-support leave) to use in certain circumstances such as to participate in a child's school event, a "work from home" program, as well as a re-hiring system for employees who have temporarily left the company to provide childcare and family care.

Furthermore, we have made it possible for employees to take half-day absences from work to care for elderly family members or attend to a sick child, and have introduced a reduced working hour system that allows employees to work shorter hours on a certain day of every week, as one form of reducing working hours for family care.

In fiscal 2020, introduced an hourly leave system that allows employees to take up to 40 hours off from work per year. Employees will be able to take off from work on an hourly basis by using part of their annual paid vacation days when they need to care for children or elderly family members or to participate in a child's school event, etc. that do not require a one-day or half-day leave.

In fiscal 2021, we increased the number of days off that employees can take when their spouse gives birth from 5 days to 10 days. We also introduced a system where we would not transfer employees to a position requiring relocation for up to three years if that would be difficult due to their caring for family members or being treated for a chronic disease or other health condition, and a career leave system according to which employees can take leave to accompany their spouse who has been transferred overseas or to study or participate in a volunteer activity (including as a Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteer).

To raise employee awareness of these initiatives, we actively disseminate relevant information through a portal site, which features a range of information on work-life balance, such as a list of support systems for employees raising children (see chart below), and interviews with working mothers. We make this information available to employees, managers, and new hires, aiming to create an environment that is conducive to using these support systems. Along with enhancing our programs, we will work to foster a workplace culture in which employees can enrich their personal lives while advancing their careers.

graph: Work-life balance support measures related to childcare (Mitsubishi Electric)

Work-life balance support measures related to childcare (Mitsubishi Electric)
(As of April 2020)

Diamond Kids Day-care centers

To support the career development of employees raising children, Mitsubishi Electric opened Diamond Kids, an onsite day-care center, in Kamakura City, Kanagawa Prefecture and Amagasaki City, Hyogo Prefecture on October 1, 2014, with an enrollment of approximately 10 children in each center.

By providing its services in locations adjacent to a Mitsubishi Electric workplace on days and during hours corresponding to the workplace, catering to extended hours, and ensuring security measures that prevent intrusion by suspicious individuals as well as accident prevention measures, Diamond Kids offers a childcare environment that allows employees to fully concentrate on their jobs without worrying about their children. It also promotes employees' return to work after taking a leave, by accepting children all year round.

Name Diamond Kids Shonan Diamond Kids Itami
Location 5-1-1 Ofuna, Kamakura City, Kanagawa Prefecture
Within the Information Technology R&D Center
6-9-22 Tsukaguchi-honmachi, Amagasaki City, Hyogo Prefecture
Within the Mitsubishi Electric Health Insurance Association Itami General Gymnasium BRIO
Facility area Floor space: approx. 100m2
Enrollment capacity Approx. 10 children
Children's ages Ages 0 (children over 57 days old) up to enrollment in primary school
Eligibility Mitsubishi Electric employees (not restricted to women)
Operating hours 8:00 – 18:00 (extended hours up to 21:00)

Other programs

Flextime

Flextime allows employees to decide on their working hours for themselves so that they may improve their productivity and exercise creativity, and thereby achieve a good balance between their corporate life and personal life.

The program may be utilized depending on the specific duties and job performance of each employee.

Working hours are divided into "core time" and "flexible time." Core time is a band of time during which all employees must be present in the office as a rule unless special circumstances exist. Flexible time is a band of time within which employees may choose when they arrive and depart from the office in consideration of the progress of their work and fluctuations in workloads. Specific time bands are determined by each office.

Special paid leave (Self-support leave)

Employees who do not use up their annual paid vacation time by the end of the fiscal year may accumulate up to 20 days of unused vacation time and carry them over to the next fiscal year and onward.

Those who receive company approval to take more than three days off from work to recuperate from an illness, engage in family care, take part in a volunteer activity, etc., may acquire a self-support leave.

Work from home program

In pursuit of a flexible work style for efficiently performing work anywhere, we have expanded the eligible users and increased the flexibility of using the program in fiscal 2019.

From fiscal 2021, employees can use the program for reasons other than to care for children or elderly family members, such as for the purpose of improving the efficiency and productivity of work and promoting work-life balance.

Utilization status of childcare and family care programs (by Mitsubishi Electric employees)

No. of employees who have taken a leave FY2018 FY2019 FY2020
Men Women Total Men Women Total Men Women Total
Childcare leave 24 273 297 38 302 340 66 348 414
Acquisition rate of leave of absence (%) - 98% - - 99% - - 100% -
Reduced working hours for childcare 11 368 379 13 379 392 14 392 406
Reduced working hours during pregnancy - 11 11 - 20 20 - 14 14
Family care leave 7 4 11 11 7 18 7 9 16
Reduced working hours for family care 4 8 12 1 6 7 1 20 21
Prenatal and postnatal absence - 182 182 - 178 178 - 198 198
Paternity leave 735 - 735 769 - 769 861 - 861
Nursing absence 13 15 28 20 15 35 29 19 48

(Unit: No. of employees)