Why HITOWA Strives for Sustainability
Why does the HITOWA Group strive for sustainability? Society faces countless problems--climate change, pandemics, declining birth rates, population aging, human rights issues, labor problems, quality issues, and more. We in the HITOWA Group believe that it is important to share the reasons for our sustainability efforts and to promote them in a way that is satisfying not only to management but also to each and every employee.
Based on the above, we have thought carefully about the reasons that the HITOWA Group engages in sustainable management, and we believe that they can be encapsulated as "to meet family and lifestyle expectations and to accomplish HITOWA's mission."
The HITOWA Group's management philosophy is ""constantly creating new value that supports families and lifestyles as we provide high levels of satisfaction and moving experiences." The needs of families and lifestyles are constantly changing. In recent years, we have felt a rapid rise in expectations related to sustainability (people wanting companies to provide products and services that are environmentally and socially conscious and that they can use with peace of mind), as can be seen in the focus that has been placed on SDGs.
In other words, our sustainable management efforts are how we meet family and lifestyle expectations, and are the very reason that the Group exists.
Building a Sustainability Promotion Structure
The HITOWA Group has created a system for more wide-ranging and effective promotion of sustainability. In April 2022, we created a Sustainability Committee to monitor, evaluate, and verify the status of our sustainability initiatives and to deliberate regarding the directions to be taken by new initiatives for dealing with changes in our environment. In October, we established a Sustainability Promotion Department to lead Group-wide implementation of sustainability initiatives.
Furthermore, in order to link our business strategies with sustainability and implement highly effective measures, we have identified six materialities (key issues) to be tackled by the HITOWA Group from the perspectives of their importance to society and to the Group. We have also defined KPI for each materiality. In the future, we will evaluate our track record of progress in initiatives based on these materialities as we strive to steadily carry out sustainable management in terms of both our contributions to society through our business activities and strengthening our business foundation.
One of the HITOWA Group's most important domains is that of people--human rights, diversity, and inclusion. We provide customers with service with a human touch, so the employees that are responsible for providing these services are as invaluable to us as our customers. We think of the Group, including our suppliers, as a "philosophical collective" in which people who share the Group philosophy work together to achieve our vision. There is no need for subdivision or discrimination within this collective. We believe that it is important that in our approach and actions we honor not only our customers and employees, but all of our stakeholders. That is why in August 2022 we formulated our Human Rights Policy and our system of human rights due diligence, through which we aim to identify and assess human rights-related risk.
In order to promote diversity and inclusion throughout the Group, the human resource divisions of each of our Group companies create action plans and define KPIs, and then work towards achieving them. We are promoting diversity and inclusion through Group-wide systems and through initiatives tailored to the business and organization needs of each Group company.
We also recognize creating systems of workstyles that match the lifestyles of individual employees, and fostering corresponding mentalities, to be important tasks. The HITOWA Group has created systems that support diverse workstyles based on individual needs, such as our work-from-home system and our super flextime system. Furthermore, we have defined KPI such as paid vacation usage rates, average overtime, and attrition rates, and we seek to maintain and promote the mental and physical health of our employees by improving their work-life balance while we also increase productivity.
With respect to the environment, we are switching to the use of electric vehicles in our business sites and facilities nationwide, helping realize a carbon-free society. Furthermore, based on the risks of increasingly frequent and intense natural disasters as a result of climate change, we are also considering using our nursing care facilities and childcare facilities, which meet strict construction standards and are resistant to natural disasters, as community disaster response sites.
Sustainability is not about ideals or surface-level issues. It is directly connected to corporate value. Each and every employee must truly understand this and see it as something that they are directly involved in. To achieve this, I think of internal communication as an important task going forward, and as my role as the HITOWA Group's CSO.
The Group will continue to engage in deeper discussions aimed at realizing and implementing sustainable management. At the same time, we will help solve societal issues through our business activities and strive to bring about sustainable growth, both for the Group and for all of society.