Hitachi Solutions, Ltd.

Third-party Review on the Hitachi Solutions CSR Report 2014

This review was conducted based on the contents of this report as well as interviews with company managers in the areas of quality assurance, environment, personnel, procurement, information security, and CSR. Hitachi Solutions' attitude toward and practices concerning CSR have triggered the development of a PDCA cycle (management cycle) with the focus on procurement and improving the workplace environment for employees.

Areas of admirable performance

  • In the area of environmentally and socially responsible procurement, while making overtures to the Information & Telecommunication Systems Company of Hitachi, Ltd. and Hitachi Systems, Ltd. to establish a joint framework for socially responsible procurement based on the core subjects outlined in ISO 26000, the company has distributed the "CSR Procurement Guidelines", which were compiled upon confirming initiatives according to each basic attribute at suppliers, to 438 suppliers in Japan and overseas, and has conducted feedback based on responses to the "CSR Procurement Questionnaire" from 390 companies. In future, I hope that the company will encourage its suppliers to make efforts and that it will share the significance and value of initiatives among the sales department and customers too through better gauging conditions by setting more detailed questions and expanding the targets, and through more effectively modifying measures and sharing issues.
  • In the area of improving the workplace environment for employees, the number of persons utilizing the systems for paid or unpaid leave, shorter working hours, and work-from-home arrangements designed to help those taking care of young children, elderly parents, and sick or injured family members has reached 9.34% of the total workforce. The company also conducts seminars on nursing care for the elderly, and has commenced a system for enabling parents to take time off to care for sick children. In future, for the sake of securing labor and improving productivity over the medium- to long-term, I hope that the company will seek suggestions from the employees themselves concerning measures for furthering engagements and teamwork between employees. Also, to further promote a better work-life balance, the experiences of those who have utilized the systems to take care of elderly parents or for other purposes should be shared with other employees.
  • Similarly, the company continued to achieve a 100% implementation rate for regular health check-ups by employees, and appointed advisors to provide consultation on both work and private matters in each business division, as a way of enhancing mental and physical health initiatives to improve working conditions for employees (WEB). Additionally, the company has allotted a budget for group meetings where employees can share their thoughts directly with higher management and other departments, and it has implemented preventive steps such as imposition of controls on overtime and work time throughout the entire company. These earnest and concrete steps will contribute toward early detection, initial prevention and recurrence prevention, help employees to return to the workplace after taking time off, and stimulate communication. I hope that the company will continue working to improve the accuracy of these preventative efforts.
  • Social contribution activities, including workshops and pro bono activities, are actively conducted with the willing and repeated participation of employees, and there is also continuing participation in assistance activities via NGOs active in developing countries. Contribution activities and human resources development should be additionally undertaken in areas where the company's products and services may be used to help address social issues.

Areas where improvement is recognized but further efforts are needed

  • The company can be commended for reviewing its company-wide initiatives based on the CSR Policy of the Hitachi Group, in terms of the framework for implementing CSR initiatives (pp 12-13). The company has also asked its business divisions to outline a vision for CSR. At the same time, there is a strong need to continue establishing departmental benchmarks for CSR, in order to encourage business departments and sections at the ground level to practice CSR on their own accord, as part of a management cycle based on reviews and assessments.
  • In the area of information security, the company can be commended for initiating an award system for partner companies. However, the company needs to expand its initiatives to encompass business partners and Group companies outside of Japan.
  • In the area of quality assurance, the company can be commended for strengthening initiatives starting with the "Fundamentals first campaign" and initiating the "Quality Improvement Effort Prize" from the next fiscal year. Having said that, the company can do more to foster a corporate culture and provide programs that support safety and accident-free performance
  • In terms of reducing environmental impact, the number of persons receiving "Eco Manager" training for managers has reached approximately 1,800. Moreover, the company has switched from recording copy paper consumption as a company-wide expense to recording it as a divisional administrative expense, and it has learned how to gauge electric power usage in hourly units. Having said that, the company can achieve further reductions by analyzing consumption and emissions in more detail, categorized by application and business division. Additionally, the company should keep striving to provide short- and medium-term progress reports as it works toward achieving the "Environmental Vision 2025", which is the long-term environmental management plan of the Hitachi Group (with the goal of reducing 100 million tons of annual CO2 emissions through Hitachi products and services by fiscal 2025, compared with fiscal 2005 levels).
  • In terms of improving and leveraging diversity, the company can be commended for progress made in developing executive managers in overseas group companies. Moving forward, the company should expand its diversity in hiring and personnel development, under a medium-term human resources portfolio strategy.

Hideto DeDe Kawakita CEO International Institute for Human,Organization and the Earth (IIHOE)

Hideto DeDe Kawakita
International Institute for Human, Organization and the Earth (IIHOE)

International Institute for Human, Organization and the Earth (IIHOE): An NPO established in 1994 "for democratic and balanced development of all the lives on the Earth." In addition to its main activity (providing management support for citizen groups and social enterprises), IIHOE has also been involved in supporting leading companies in their CSR.