In response to the social backdrop of an aging population and low birthrate, Chugai is striving to improve working conditions. We provide information and conduct seminars to support the development of the next generation and educate employees about balancing nursing care and work. In part, these efforts meant to ensure employees can continue to work rather than leaving due to childbirth or for childcare, nursing care and other reasons. In 2013 management and labor worked to bring together a vision for Chugai Group’s work/life balance goals under the theme of pursuing work/life synergies, and in 2015 it was positioned as a part of the new mid-term business plan, and we have been working to create a rewarding, inclusive workplace.
In 2018, we positioned “work style reform” in the med-term management plan and started the initiative. In “work style reform,” we have been working toward a state where each and every one of us is “working vigorously and autonomously, and living a healthy and prosperous life, while pursuing work-life synergies”, and as an organization, we aim to be in a state where “management that produces high achievements in a limited time and a culture that promotes diversity and inclusion are rooted”. At the same time, we have been reforming the systems and introducing and expanding digital tools to increase the flexibility of working styles so that each of our diverse employees can maximize their abilities. From 2021, as a new work style (Smart Work), we started a company-wide “highly flexible work style according to the characteristics of the organization, job type, and job role by promoting the digitization of work”. Each one of us autonomously promotes hybrid work that combines working from home and working at office.
From now on, we will promote “reform of job satisfaction” that supports the establishment of autonomous and highly flexible work styles and the demonstration of abilities through spontaneous and active actions for each individual, with the aim of realizing our new growth strategy, TOP I 2030 and the self-fulfillment of each and every diverse employee.
Improving Working Conditions
In addition to introducing flexible work systems Chugai has created an environment to support the balance between work and major life events.
- Work-related system
- Telework system (working from home and using satellite offices)
- Half-day and hourly paid leave system
- Professional type discretionary work system (Researcher)
- Super-flextime system (no core time) (including for MRs and other remote workers)
- Short-time work system for childcare (flextime work)
- Flexible shifts for childcare (for fixed-time workers)
- Short-time work system for nursing care (flextime work)
- Use of business vehicle to take children to, or pick them up from childcare centers
- Commuting by Shinkansen due to marriage, spouse’s transfer or nursing care
- Long-term childcare leave (first 14 consecutive days are paid leave)
- Paternity leave
- Child nursing leave
- Nursing care leave and long-term nursing care leave
- Support for expenses/tools
- Company PCs rental service for employees taking maternity leave, childcare leave or nursing care leave
- Subsidies for non-registered daycare facility expenses after returning from maternity leave or long-term childcare leave
- Subsidies for babysitting expenses (All Japan Childcare Services Association)
- Introducing a nursery school hunting concierge (Support for early return by supporting the set-up of childcare environment)
- Information provided via websites
- Suku-Suku Square: website to support raising the next generation (information site for programs and services related to childbirth and childcare)
- Info Care (information website on balancing nursing care and work)
- Other support
- Support plan for MRs to live with their spouses
- Alumni system (reemployment registration system for the employees who retire due to marriage, spouse transfer, childcare, nursing care, going on to higher education, job change, etc.)
- Kids’ Square Nihonbashi Muromachi, a consortium-managed childcare center
Support for Raising the Next Generation
Having recognized a range of initiatives, the Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare has certified that Chugai is a company that is taking steps to improve labor conditions.
Chugai formulated a general employer action plan in 2005 pursuant to Japan’s Act on Advancement of Measures to Support Raising Next-Generation Children, and has taken measures to improve working conditions such as introducing a program to support employees who return to work after childcare leave. In recognition of these efforts, in 2008, 2011, 2015 and 2018, Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare certified Chugai as a company that actively supports the balance between work and family life under the terms of the act. In addition, as a result of the initiatives implemented during the 4th Action Plan, the Company obtained “Platinum Kurumin” certification in 2018. Currently, the Company is in the process of implementing the 7th Action Plan for Raising the Next Generation, which runs for one year from January 1, to December 31, 2022, with the intent of supporting the balance between work and childcare at an even higher level than it is today. As employee circumstances diversify with childcare, nursing care and other life events, we have developed a handbook to familiarize supervisors with some of the key points they should manage. We have also created tools to enable employees to continue communicating with the company during childcare leave, implemented e-learning for both employees and their supervisors, and introduced one-on-one discussions before maternity leave and after returning to work, efforts designed to support smooth return to the workplace and career development.
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Goals of Action Plan for Raising the Next Generation
Measures to Reduce Long Working Hours
Even as work demands increase in terms of both quality and quantity, Chugai is implementing initiatives aimed at enhancing productivity
Since 2007, Chugai has been making ongoing efforts to educate employees about appropriate working hours through sharing of overtime work conditions between labor and management, setting recommended days for taking annual leave (five days a year) and registration of annual leave as an anniversary day (can be registered unlimited times). Other measures include “no overtime days” set by sites and divisions, ensuring advance determination of the necessity of overtime work, and time management training.
In addition, in the “Work Style Reform” initiative from 2018, we have raised each employee’s time consciousness through ingenuity in work styles and discussions in the workplace, which has led to fostering awareness and demonstrating actions to improve productivity.
In 2020, these initiatives resulted in monthly average overtime work (unregulated) of 4.3 hours per person, with an average of 59.0% (non-consolidated) taking annual leave.
We will continue to pursue work style efficiency and improve productivity through “reform of job satisfaction” initiatives.