Stakeholder Dialogue 2009
Date: December 23, 2008
Place: DENSO Head Office (Kariya, Aichi)
The following three DENSO strategic CSR fields were selected
(1) Environmental preservation: “Achieving business growth while reducing environmental impact”
(2) Respect for employees: “Promote female participation”
(3) Social contribution: “A corporate image harmonious with communities”
Director, (NPO) Chubu Recycle Citizen’s Organization
Director General, (NPO) Voluntary Neighbors
Representative, Institute for Human Diversity Japan
Chief Manager, Citizens Collaboration Sect., Citizens’ Activities Dept., Kariya City
General Manager of the CS Promotion Dept. & Director of the CSR Promotion Office, CSR Promotion Div., NEC Corporation
CEO, IIHOE: International Institute for Human, Organization and the Earth
Executive Director, Corporate Planning Div.
Safety & Environment Promotion Div.
Human Resources Div.
General Admin. Div.
Corporate Planning Div.
Opinions etc. expressed in the dialogue
Main opinions, expectations, etc. from external and DENSO participants are as follows.
Theme (1) Environmental preservation: “Achieving business growth while reducing environmental impact”
(●: Experts, ♦: DENSO)
● Local residents do not care about DENSO’s products: they care about wastewater from plants, traffic congestion and crowded trains during commuting hours, in particular. Recently, employees have been leaving the workplace after working regular hours. How many years will local residents have to put up with the traffic congestion caused by these employees heading home? Another concern is CO2 emissions from traffic congestion.
♦ We have ensured water quality management (as explained in the 2005 report), increased commuter bus services to help reduce traffic congestion, and employed staggered working hours to avoid traffic congestion when commuting, among other initiatives. Regarding traffic congestion, we will continuously make arrangements to minimize inconvenience to local residents in line with changes in production.
● When I read the report, I could not readily understand the specific energy-saving efforts and the mechanism of private power generation. More explanations should be included.
♦ The 2009 report will provide an easy-to-understand explanation about cogeneration, wind power generation, hydraulic power generation, etc.
● It is difficult to understand how DENSO tries to solve social issues through its business operations. Specifically, how does DENSO identify important issues through these dialogues? How does DENSO utilize the feedback from these dialogues in its business operations? What is the relationship between the three strategic fields of CSR; namely, environmental conservation, respect for employees, and social contribution; and the business operations? I expect that the relationship between the business operations and CSR to be clarified and discussed in the report.
● The concept of reducing CO2 emissions from a company’s own plants is obsolete. Communities should be involved as partners to cut CO2 emissions and create an “eco-city.” DENSO’s expertise and environmental technologies should be applied to solve communities’ issues. DENSO should connect NPOs with technologies in preventing global warming.
● Solutions should not be sought based on the assumption of continuing growth. It is necessary to consider a society less dependent on cars or to promote car sharing. For example, enhancing the comfort of wheelchairs helps create ideas for a mobility society. Pursuing mobility not only on roads but also in daily life would help find solutions to reduce environmental impacts.
Theme (2) Respect for employees: “Promote female participation”
(●: Experts, ♦: DENSO)
● The basic approach to diversity is to change the awareness of the majority (impartiality and equality ≠ diversity). It is necessary to correctly understand population change and have a sense of impending crisis.
♦ In FY2008, education was offered about the significance of diversity through the diversity forum and the lecture for newly appointed managers. We will continuously improve the methods to raise employee awareness.
● Commitment by top management is the key to promoting female participation. A strong message should be sent out to encourage employees to have female subordinates if they wish to be promoted to managerial positions.
♦ The president delivered his message at the diversity forum. The message was also conveyed in newsletters. We will continuously deliver the message from top management.
● It is wrong to assume that female employees do not want to be promoted to managerial positions. An environment is not in place that enables female employees to accept offers for promotion; they decline offers because they have children or they do not have role models etc. An environment should be created so that they can accept offers for promotion.
♦ In terms of diversity, we implemented measures in FY2008 to change internal awareness by organizing a diversity forum, issuing newsletters, offering training for management-level employees, etc. In FY2009, we will implement new measures that enable clerical workers to take active roles. Specifically, to increase their motivation and desire for self-improvement, we will increase educational opportunities for clerical workers, provide opportunities to design their careers, and establish new positions. In addition to creating necessary infrastructure (mechanisms, systems), we will make arrangements so that this infrastructure is positively accepted by employees (in terms of utilization of the system and changes in awareness). Specifically, we will build a positive working environment for employees, provide them opportunities to take active roles, and create a corporate culture where the infrastructure is readily accessible to employees.
● The work-life balance needs to be maintained systematically by establishing rules not to hold meetings from 4:00 p.m. or not to hold meetings involving executive officers on Monday.
♦ Company-wide efforts are underway to reorganize business operations, review the meeting arrangements, reduce the time spent on meetings, and designate days when employees must leave the workplace after working regular hours.
● NEC accepted Chinese students enrolled in Hitotsubashi University graduate schools as interns. Employees were inspired by the interns. This reminded us that diversity is required to strengthen a company. Recruiting foreigners for head office operations will help establish a global perspective.
Theme (3) Social contribution: “A corporate image harmonious with communities – how to encourage employees’ social participation”
(●: Experts, ♦: DENSO)
● Community building efforts should be made from the viewpoint of coexistence and collaboration. Residents, NPOs, neighborhood associations, governmental bodies, schools, and companies must work together to solve issues. Indifference is the biggest problem. Employees’ awareness should be raised through educational programs. It is difficult to see how DENSO identifies community issues.
♦ In FY2008, we organized neighborhood cleanup activities with local residents and held a round table conference with the area’s leaders, among others, as part of education for new employees. In FY2009, we will create opportunities for dialogues with communities and identify issues, and enhance activities to ensure harmonious coexistence from the viewpoint of the communities (e.g. organizing meetings for exchanging opinions toward building safe and secure communities through collaboration with the communities, and reviewing the possibility of launching new collaborative activities with the area’s residents).
● Assessment is required to determine the most important issues in communities. It is necessary to look squarely at issues faced by the communities. Many companies work on cleanup activities, but these activities do not seem to meet the needs of the communities.
♦ In FY2008, a round table conference was held with the community leaders in the Kariya area, and it was found that the community attaches importance to building a safe and secure community. In FY2009, we will create opportunities for dialogues with the community to identify issues and clarify the details of the support that DENSO can offer. Activities to ensure harmonious coexistence will be enhanced from the viewpoint of communities (e.g. organizing meetings for exchanging opinions toward building a safe and secure community, and reviewing the possibility of launching new collaborative activities with the area’s residents).
● The DECOPON Eco-Point System should be shared through the supply chain and with communities. Under the current situation, the system cannot be expanded further. DENSO should go back to the origins of DECOPON and use the system more effectively to fulfill its objective. It is necessary to motivate employees to participate and create a movement. A system should be developed in collaboration with NPOs.
♦ FY2008 marked the second year of the DECOPON Eco-Point System. We increased the opportunities to earn points, made the rewards more attractive, organized network events with participants, conducted a questionnaire survey on participants, and promoted a collaborative project with Kariya City and Apita supermarket. In FY2009, the system will be reorganized to encourage employees’ social participation. (The keywords will be “local,” “profitable,” and “casual.” Points will be awarded to personal activities, including blood donations and neighborhood association activities. We will improve the mechanism to encourage employees’ activities. For example, we will organize and offer programs in which employees can participate after working regular hours or during their lunch breaks.)
● Employees should be encouraged to contribute to the communities during their career, not after retirement. It is also necessary to present a model image for after retirement.
♦ The NPO experience programs have been organized since FY2008. Ten employees aged in their fifties experienced work at an NPO. The program will be upgraded in FY2009. We will increase opportunities for employees to engage in community organization activities. For example, we will hold an NPO seminar in house, and disseminate information about community activities to employees.
● Heartful Day should be shared globally. It should be an annual (not a one-time) program. Employees should be commended, or encouraged to volunteer based on specific themes, as necessary, to increase motivation and a sense of unity in their business operations. The themes should be coherent with or related to DENSO’s business. DENSO should take full advantage of its uniqueness in monozokuri (manufacturing).
● There are many ways to contribute to society, in addition to participating in social contribution programs organized by the company. Participating in a local PTA is another form of social contribution. It is also necessary to identify individuals who work for their communities.