Work & Life
Support of Employees in Balancing Work and Life
To support its employees in balancing work and life, Sumitomo Electric is committed to promoting the work style that makes a clear distinction between work and life and has also developed child and family-care related systems actively. For example, the Company attained the goals set under its five Action Plans, which were formulated on the basis of the Law for Measures to Support the Development of the Next Generation. Consequently, Sumitomo Electric has been certified by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare as a business that helps its employees balance work and childcare.These efforts have been generating positive results, as exemplified by the fact that many female employees who have given birth take childcare leave, and return to work.
We have also improved the system so that male employees, as well as female employees, can take childcare leave and are allowed to take leave when their spouses give birth, in order to encourage male employees to participate in childcare. We are also making various efforts to establish a work environment for balancing work and life by distributing handbooks, building a homepage, and organizing a company-wide forum in order to enhance understanding by all employees.
Various Support Programs
① Reemployment System
Since April 2008, Sumitomo Electric has introduced a scheme to reemploy employees resigning due to circumstances beyond their control such as childbirth, childcare and nursing care. In the scheme, we organize interviews and reemploy eligible persons when they are able to return to work (within three years from their retirement) and, as a general rule, assign them to their former workplaces.
② Childcare Centers
As a measure to foster a supportive environment for employees working full-time while raising children, Sumitomo Electric opened childcare centers at its Yokohama and Osaka Works in March and April 2008 respectively, and added a third center in Itami Works in March 2009. For employees who cannot use our childcare centers, we are taking other supportive measures such as subsidizing their use of other childcare centers.
③ Expansion of the Holiday Program Sumitomo Electric introduced the “Anniversary Holiday Program,” which allows employees to take two paid days off per year as they wish, on their birthday or other anniversary as designated by the employees, and the “Positive-off Holiday Program,” which allows employees to take one paid day off per year. In addition, Sumitomo Electric has adopted the “Life Support Holiday Program,” which allows employees to take five consecutive paid holidays after having completed a certain length of service with the Company, so as to support creating a working environment in which employees can take days off more easily. We also introduced a volunteer holiday system, which helps employees participate in social contribution activities.
Number of Users of the Employee Support Programs in Fiscal 2014
SWiTCH Plus Campaign
Sumitomo Electric promoted the company-wide SWITCH Campaign for three years from April 2008. The objective of the campaign was to encourage people to make a clear distinction between work and life, or in other words, “to work in a concentrated manner when it is time to work, and completely rest when it is time to rest.” The main efforts were to enhance awareness through the company-wide campaign, to set days to go home without overtime hours on a workplace basis, to take paid holidays according to plans, and to improve work efficiency.
As a result, the campaign achieved positive results as shown in the table below, including the steady decrease in total working hours per year, although the figures for fiscal 2009 were extraordinary due to the global financial crisis in September 2008.
Based on these achievements, we started a new initiative named “SWiTCH Plus Campaign” in fiscal 2011. In addition to reduction of working hours and improvement of work efficiency, this Campaign integrates closely related measures such as support for the development of the coming generations, support for nursing care and mental health measures. With the common target of “promoting the establishment of a workplace where the employees can have mental and physical power to work efficiently, exercise their best abilities with a sense of responsibility for their jobs, and work with smiles even more ‘lively’ than before,” we will develop this Campaign on Group-wide and global scales.