Human Resource Strategy
Our Approach to Human Resources
At Sojitz, we consider our people
to be our greatest asset, and the value we create is derived from
strengthening the skills of our human resources.
The sustainable growth of the Sojitz Group depends on having a deep pool of talent to create, maintain and develop foundations for generating stable earnings.
We define global management talent as people who can create value and generate profits in the global business arena by thinking and acting on their own initiative and persevering until successful. We recruit and develop people who have the qualities necessary for the global management talent we seek, assign the right people to the right positions so they can maximize their potential, and promote their success with various human resource programs.
Three Key Themes for Human Resources in Medium-term Management Plan 2017
■Cultivation of human resources for new business areas
For the Sojitz Group to continue to grow in a rapidly changing operating environment, it is essential that every Group employee takes the initiative in identifying issues and making day-to-day improvements to their work by applying new functions and creativity without clinging to conventional ideas. To that end, we will continue working on initiatives that promote an improvement-minded approach, and will continuously and systematically cultivate management personnel for new business areas, encouraging them to gain broad business experience and apply their skills in their areas of expertise.
■Responding to globalization by fully utilizing human resources from various backgrounds
Developing strong human resources is vital for competing successfully in a rapidly globalizing business environment, and we will continue to promote global competence among our employees. We also intend to bolster local staff overseas and further promote diversity so that all employees can exercise their unique capabilities in their workplaces.
■Fostering a corporate culture to realize Sojitz’s unique strengths and identity based on trust and speed
The Sojitz Guiding Principles were formulated in 2014, and to instill those principles in members of the Sojitz Group, we have made focused efforts to build understanding and acceptance among employees, mainly through training. In addition, we have deployed a range of initiatives to foster a corporate culture in which the Sojitz Guiding Principles and the Sojitz Group Slogan – and therefore the Sojitz Group Statement – are reflected in employees’ day-to-day activities.
Programs for Developing Future Senior Managers
For Sojitz, a corporation which conducts diverse businesses through more than 400 Group companies, developing human resources who will manage its operating companies is an important task. We implement a variety of measures to develop employees into senior managers and retain them in the long-term, including an overseas trainee program, an overseas language training program, an MBA study abroad program, a development program that gives employees exposure to real management settings, and M&A training.
For example, for the senior management development program
that started in 2012, employees who show promise as future senior managers
are selected from a wide range of departments and sent to Group companies
that are not directly related to the department they came from. Under
the guidance of the CEOs and other executives at those Group companies,
they acquire the practical knowledge and mindset needed to manage operating
companies through on-the-job experience, in a management setting. We
are already seeing results – in fact, one person who participated in
this program has been serving as CEO of a U.S. chemical subsidiary since
We also introduced M&A training in 2016 to foster business investment and business management knowledge, and continue to expand systems for developing senior managers who will support the Sojitz Group’s future growth.
As part of our global recruitment efforts, we have a hiring pipeline whereby non-Japanese staff for head office positions. We started by recruiting foreign graduates of Japanese universities and alumni of the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme, and have since expanded recruitment targets to graduates of overseas universities, regardless of Japanese ability. These employees are already playing important roles at Sojitz.