HIGH LIGHT 06 Promotion of Work Style Reforms Change Your Work-style, Change Your Environment, Change Your Mind-set

Amidst the revision of work-style throughout society, reducing long working hours and improving productivity is an important issue for securing human resource and employee satisfaction. The Sumitomo Forestry Group is currently improving its personnel system in series. Especially in the Housing and Construction Division, we are promoting new initiatives to strike work-life balance from the three approaches of improving efficiency of operations, creating workable environment, and changing mind-set.

Improving Efficiency of Operations,Creating Environment,Changing Mind


Example: SDG targets 8.5

By 2030, achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all women and men, including for young people and persons with disabilities, and equal pay for work of equal value.

Sumitomo Forestry's contribution in achieving the goal

  • Promote work-life balance
  • Just and fair employment and treatment
  • Active human resources development

Promoting work-life balance and improving productivity
Initiatives in Housing and Construction Division

Reduce Load by Flexible Working Hour, Use of ICT Tools, and Implementation of Supporting Staff

In the Housing and Construction Business, one of our Group’s core business, its work-style had mentality of accepting longer work hours and work load to fulfill the needs of the customers. Technicians such as person in charge of construction whose responsibility is to manage sites that are required higher quality and precision and person in charge of design who are required to make proposals that incorporate customer needs especially tended to have increased working hours. We are striving to innovate operations in the department and change systems to reduce the total working hours to reducing these burden and increasing quality of work in shorter time.

To be specific, we have implemented supportive systems to effectively use time and reduce work load such as flex-time system to allow employees to adjust workload with in the same month on their own and assigning supporting staff to providing aid that require support based on work load and its content.

In addition, we are working to further increase operational efficiency by utilizing ICT and reduce human errors and smooth sharing of information internally through introducing application that automatically generates and links meeting records and specifications and list of estimated prices to a computer. We will further expand the use of applications in the future.

Proposal to customers using applications

Proposal to customers using applications

Initiatives Launched in Fiscal 2017 and Later

Overview of initiatives Effects
Improving efficiency of operations
  • Effective use of efficiency improvement tools (use of tablet terminals, introduction of applications)
  • Promoting going directly to a site and directly home
  • Fixing designs and specification in fewer meetings, and effective sharing of information with the branch
  • Reduction of work load and human error
  • Reduction of time and stress of travel
Creating workable environment
  • Implementing supporting staff
  • Setting planned paid leaves
  • Reduction of employees work load
  • Encouragement of taking paid leaves
Change mind-set
  • Changing PC shut down time
  • Revising evaluation system, etc.
  • Raised awareness about increasing operational efficiency
  • Planning more importance to per hour productivity

Connecting Improvement of Productivity to Treatment and Employee Evaluation

We have implemented evaluation based on productivity per hour from fiscal 2017 to further enhance the results and effectiveness of initiatives mentioned earlier. This system is used as one of the indices when evaluating the branches and treatment of the employees while connecting it to the employee evaluation. This has increased awareness of branches about work-style and increasing productivity and employees individual engagement. Tendencies to promote taking paid leaves have expanded and leading to positive results in not only improved work-style and innovation in taking leaves.

We will continue our initiatives to further improve productivity and profitability while listening to the voices of on-site employees and improve work-life balance.

Transition ratio of average yearly overtime working hours per person with fiscal 2015 as 100% (for three years) (Housing and Construction Division)


Promotion of Development of Workplaces where Diverse Personnel can Work with Vigor and Enthusiasm

The Tokyo-Minami Branch is striving to build supporting system among the staff and increase skills as its main initiatives. For example, management asks support for staff with high work load during group morning assembly and recognizes each others peaks and lows of work load and share or transfer work. We are also striving employees to be multi-functional to enable to handle part of the work even they are not the main person in charge. Furthermore, we are holding regular discussion in the Work-style Improvement Committee consisted by two members from each department and has been leading to identifying issues and improvement plans for the branch.

Through these initiatives, average overtime in the branch reduced while paid leave usage increased over the past few years. I myself took long summer vacation last year and promoted it to my staff as well. We were able to reduce overtime and some members from the Group companies enjoy tennis on holidays.

Tokyo-Minami Branch, Housing and Construction Division Manager (in charge of General Administration Group) Ami Makimura

Ami Makimura
Manager (in charge of General Administration Group)
Tokyo-Minami Branch, Housing and Construction Division

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