Global Human Resource Management > Human Resource Development

Human Resource Development > Continuous Education and Training Activities

Continuous Education and Training Activities

Based on the Four Shared Values of the Nittoku Way (Shisei-Shinjitsu, Dokuritsu-Jiei, Shikai-Keitei and Soshi-Kantetsu) and on the “Quality Product” and “Participation by all” principles, we conduct education and training activities in a planned manner to continuously develop employees who can boldly deal with challenging internal and external changes as well as those with high levels of expertise.
Our education and training activities consist mainly of OJT (on-the-job training), through which employees can acquire technologies and knowledge through their hands-on work. We also offer OFF-JT (off-the-job training), providing employees with new technologies, knowledge and skills outside their respective workplaces. We have a wide range of OFF-JT programs that include training by organizational level and role to provide necessary knowledge and skills, product quality education, environment and safety & health education, manufacturing education, education in global business, and career development support.
In FY 2020, we had to cancel some training programs due to the spread of COVID-19. However, we implemented thorough measures against the spread, such as changing the training method from group training to online training, and a total of 3,706 employees took the courses.

Development and Management of Managerial Human Resources

As we expanded our business globally, in 2016, we started a program to find and develop the next generation of global managerial human resources, targeting all Group companies.
This program is intended to facilitate the employment and promotion of candidates regardless of nationality and to provide them with opportunities and environments that allow them to demonstrate their abilities. It was named the “HAGI Program” after Hagi City in Yamaguchi Prefecture, where the Shoka Sonjuku school developed diverse human resources at the end of the Edo period. Chairman Shinichi Odo serves as the head of the program. Under the program, seminars have been held on a continuous basis to provide employees with opportunities to learn together with a focus on gaining a big picture view encompassing the entire company. We are thereby developing leaders with the will and sense of mission required to take the NGK SPARK PLUG Group into the future.
Targeting human resources in Japan, we run Nittoku Business School classes for employees who are almost qualified to participate in the HAGI Program. For these classes we have prepared a curriculum that helps participants develop logical thinking and acquire knowledge and skills regarding management strategies, marketing and presentations. It also includes case studies based on actual examples and is intended to help participants to develop the spirit, techniques and physical stamina required of leaders.
Employees who have completed the HAGI Program and the Nittoku Business School curriculum have already been making contributions in core positions within the Group.
We have also established a selective human resources development program for each of North America, Europe, Asia and other regions and implement the program four times a year for the local development of business leaders.
Moreover, in order to visualize the personal histories and skills of employees who are candidates to become business leaders, we have collected information about NGK SPARK PLUG’s managers and executives of overseas Group companies for input into our human resource databank, which is used in discussions by the Human Resources Committee. This committee is composed of the members of the management team and has been meeting monthly since FY2018. At the meeting the members discuss personnel affairs regarding core positions and work to place the right person in the right job for total optimization.

Development of Managers

For the development of managers, we provide them with opportunities to review their past management approaches and observe the situation of their respective workplaces in an objective manner.

Implementation of a 360-degree survey

We implemented a 360-degree survey targeting departmental managers and those in higher positions in FY2018, and we will expand the survey target to include sectional managers and those in higher positions in FY2020.
In the survey, we examine leadership qualities of the respondents, including progressiveness, intelligence and sense of responsibility, as well as negative attributes that might hinder them from demonstrating their leadership, such as being avoidant. The survey results reveal the gaps between what the surveyed individuals think about themselves and what others think about them. We give feedback to the respondents to help them become aware of the importance of “observing” themselves.

Use of an indicator to visualize workplace engagement

Along with the “one-on-one meeting,” which we introduced on a trial basis in FY2019 to foster dialogue between managers and their subordinates for the development of workers able to work autonomously, we have also introduced a quantitative indicator as a tool to visualize workplace engagement. This engagement indicator numerically shows the level of employees’ eagerness to contribute to their organizations and jobs, and is designed for use by line managers to check the management level of their workplaces.