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Labor and Human Rights
Assisting Talent and Self Development

Canon provides every employee the opportunity to build and advance their careers.

Supporting the Development of Talent

One of the key strategies in Phase V of the Excellent Global Corporation Plan is to cultivate globally competent human resources capable of performing duties while maintaining a global perspective. Under this key strategy, Canon is developing human resources that can contribute to its global operations in various fields, such as management, technology development, and manufacturing.

Canon Inc.’s Educational System for Employees

To motivate employees and enhance skill specialization, Canon Inc. maintains an educational system for rank-based, elective and self-development training.

Rank-based training enhances knowledge and skills required for carrying out the duties of each job grade, and fosters awareness of required actions defined in the Guiding Principles. Furthermore, general employees take business skills training as a supplement to rank-based training. Elective training supports employees’ acquisition of knowledge and skills necessary for fulfilling their duties, and self-development training provides participants with knowledge and skills for their personal development.

These training programs also cover such issues as harassment prevention and compliance in order to develop trustworthy employees.

Our goal is to further reinforce efforts to systematically cultivate the next generation at Canon, concentrating on the development of management-oriented, globally minded and technologically skilled human resources.

Canon Inc.’s Employee Training System (Excluding Senior Leadership Training) Canon Inc.’s Employee Training System (Excluding Senior Leadership Training)

Canon Inc.’s Employee Training System (Excluding Senior Leadership Training)

Canon Inc.’s Career Development Support Programs

Enhanced Management Training

Canon Inc. is focusing on the development of management-level employees through programs that include rank-based management training for all newly appointed managers. We are diversifying our training formats and content through the active use of various e-learning training programs and so on.

Regular Career Development

Under the position-based pay system, we evaluate the conduct of each employee as well as the extent to which assigned duties are fulfilled, with the results reflected in wages and human-resource development initiatives. Supervisors assign duties to their employees at the start of the year and both parties meet in an interview format to discuss and verify the details. During a mid-year interview, the supervisor checks on progress and adds or removes duties and revises targets as needed. At the end of the year, both parties evaluate the achievements for that particular year.

Evaluations are based on two factors: first, the extent to which an employee fulfills assigned duties, basically focusing on work results and the processes used to reach those results; and second, whether their actions meet expectations as an employee of an “excellent global company.” When discussing the evaluation, supervisors offer advice and guidance on improving results and the employee’s conduct. This enables employees to objectively understand their own strengths and weaknesses, which aids them in achieving further growth. Also, during the interviews, supervisors and employees discuss career matters, providing supervisors valuable insight into the career vision and aspirations of employees, which they can then utilize in future development plans.

Career Matching System

Canon Inc. has also established an internal career matching system to support its employees in pursuing satisfying careers. The system matches the right people to the right jobs, promotes internal mobility of human resources and brings greater vitality to the company. In 2016, 81 employees were transferred through this system.

In 2015, we launched a career matching system featuring a combination of internal recruitment and training. The career matching system enables employees who wish to make further use of their skills to apply to work at specific workplaces and in particular types of work. By comparison, employees who do not have the experience to do so but wish to take on new working challenges can apply through our “training-type” career matching system. This system provides training opportunities to gain requisite skills, and then offers employment based on their skill level. The training period is up to five months, depending on the type of work. In 2016, 20 employees were transferred to new workplaces under this system.

Post-Retirement Career and Life Plan Training

Canon holds Creative Life Seminars for employees when they reach the ages of 45, 50, and 54 in order to help them plan for their retirement years. By providing employees with an opportunity to think about their life plan and career plan at an early stage, we help them to systematically plan and prepare for life after the age of 60. The content of the Creative Life Seminar varies according to the age of attendees. The first seminar focuses on financial planning for stable living in the future. The second helps participants to build an optimized career plan for the rest of their employment and subsequent retirement. The third addresses life planning from various perspectives, including personal development after retirement, budgeting, and health.

Career and Life Plan Seminar Participants in 2016
  45-yr-olds 50-yr-olds 54-yr-olds
Participants 226 366 1,126
(772 employees, 354 spouses)
Career Development Support for Employees

Canon provides a program known as My Career Course as part of its career development support for employees. This course encourages autonomous growth by having each employee reflect on his or her own goals and life plan. Canon Group employees mostly in their 30s and 40s and from a variety of fields attend the course. Begun in 2001, some 1,500 people had participated in this course as of 2016.

Additionally, various e-learning courses are offered throughout the year to encourage personal development. Since 2014, from July to September Canon holds self-development support events during periods for promoting work-life balance.

Canon also provides learning opportunities to employees usually unable to attend training because they work in a remote location or their schedule does not permit. We ensure that all sites have the same access to events, by dispatching in-house instructors, for example.

Self-Development E-Learning Programs
  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Number of programs 59 52 199 318 343
Number of participants 577 746 6,766 9,999 9,938
2016 Event Report
Theme Event name Number of sessions Participants
Language skills English ability diagnostic test 9 325
Global awareness Cross-Cultural Exchange Seminar 2 82
Business skills PowerPoint Design Course 10 674

Recipient of Grand Prize in Good Career Company Awards 2016

Canon received the Grand Prize (Minister’s Award) in the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare’s 2016 Good Career Company Awards for its efforts in career development support.

The Good Career Company Awards recognize companies that are making exemplary efforts to support their employees’ autonomous career development.

In selecting the recipients of this year’s prize, the judging committee awarded Canon high marks for the following:

  • Support for career development provided by both the human resources development department, which is responsible for training, and the department in charge of career counseling.
  • Systems for internal career matching as well as career development support interviews in operation since 2005, and the launch in 2016 of a combined training and career matching system.
  • Provision of e-learning programs and opportunities for self-development. The establishment of committees to develop engineering human resources through rank-based training programs for new hires all the way up to veteran leaders was also recognized.

Going forward, we will foster employee engagement in the workplace through our personnel systems and training while developing consultation systems closely attuned to the needs of our employees.

Fostering Experts in Various Fields

Development of Human Resources in Engineering

Canon promotes the retention and development of engineering human resources in order to continually generate innovation as a manufacturer.

For example, Canon Inc. has training systems in place for each of its specializations, including machinery, electronics, optics, materials, and software, to support the development of next-generation human resources in engineering.

A committee for the development of engineering human resources has been set up for each of the five core specializations noted above. These committees develop rank-based training programs, from new hires to junior engineers and all the way up to veteran leaders, as well as conducting courses and carrying out other initiatives. We also offer various forms of training for those specializations not represented by one of these committees.

In 2016, a total of 228 programs and 353 classes were held in these specializations, with 4,126 engineers from Group companies in Japan, taking part.

Number of Participants in Technical Training Number of Participants in Technical Training

Number of Participants in Technical Training

  • * Including students of WBT (Web Based Training) from 2014

Development of Global Human Resources in Manufacturing

At Canon, we seek to foster manufacturing skilled personnel at each overseas production site as we press on toward sustainable development of global production system in harmony with the international community.

Specifically, we are focusing on developing human resources who support production activities, mainly through the Manufacturing Training Center of Canon Inc. In 2016, a total of 443 employees who work in overseas production sites took part in training programs organized by the Manufacturing Training Center.

In order to promote training at overseas sites, Canon also focuses on instructor-development training that seeks to develop instructors for technological and technical skills training as well as workplace management training. In 2016, instructor-development training was held on 34 occasions, with a total of 136 employees participating.

Utilizing a dedicated video conferencing system, in 2017 we launched distance training, which enables to share information in real time, with the aim of increasing program participation.

The Technical skills test, featuring the same standards as those in Japan, has also been established at overseas sites with the goal of improving technical skills development.

In 2016, that test was carried out on seven types of work skills, including Injection molding, Board mounting, and factory automation (FA), at a total of eight sites in Thailand, Vietnam, China, and Malaysia, with 401 employees participating.

Developing Globally Minded Personnel

With 376 operational sites* worldwide as of the end of 2016, the globalization of Canon’s operations is proceeding apace. Against this backdrop, we are stepping up training to develop a globally minded workforce, given the urgent task to develop human resources with leadership abilities that can be utilized on the international stage.

  • * The number of operational sites includes consolidated subsidiaries and equity-method affiliates.

Enhancing Senior Leadership at Group Companies Outside Japan

Canon offers Global Leadership Training to senior management of Group companies outside Japan in order to share the company’s management philosophy and develop leaders skilled at innovation in a global environment.

Internationalization Training for Young Employees

In order to help employees acquire language and international business skills, Canon Inc. has established a system to allow employees to gain overseas work experience early in their careers.

For example, the Asia Trainee Program enables recruits who are 30 years old or younger to engage in practical study at local companies in Asia. After five months of language training at university, the trainees spend about one year gaining practical experience at Asian affiliates. The program started in 1995, and by the end of 2016, 99 employees had taken part.

The Europe–US Trainee Program dispatches young employees to Europe and the United States. Started in 2012, the program has thus far provided training to a total of 42 employees, as of the end of 2016. For employees dispatched to non-English speaking areas, we offer language education and practical training similar to the Asia Trainee Program, and expect that they will play an important role in developing our business in such markets as South America and Russia.

The Overseas Study Program for Technicians is intended to develop engineers and technicians who can function internationally, as well as enable them to acquire skills that they can use to contribute to Canon’s core businesses in the future. This program began in 1984, and 109 employees had gone to study at universities in the US and Europe as of 2016. In light of our plans to improve our R&D organization in the US and Europe, we plan to select approximately 10 employees each year for overseas study.

Asia Trainee taking part at an Asian subsidiary

Asia Trainee taking part at an Asian subsidiary

Vitalizing Human Resources Through International Assignments

Canon established the Canon Global Assignment Policy (C-GAP) as an international assignment system for our global Group companies to stimulate international personnel exchanges, not only from Japan to other countries, but also from other countries to Japan, and internationally between the US and Asia, for example. The goal of this program is to promote global business cooperation and the development of human resources capable of functioning at the global level.

C-GAP is a global personnel policy shared by our Group companies, and personnel assignment policies in each respective region are based upon it. Combining these policies allows us to further promote personnel exchanges and to share basic philosophies and structures, while providing for flexibility in dealing with the special characteristics of each region, such as laws and culture.

For example, in Europe and the United States we have the US/Europe exchange program, which enables employees with at least three years of service to participate in a personnel exchange for a period of one year, and in Asia we have the ASIA C-GAP, which is a one-year training program in Europe and the United States for developing executive management candidates from Asia.

As of the end of 2016, 1,308 employees were being deployed on international assignments under this program.

Global Personnel Management: C-GAP Global Personnel Management: C-GAP

Global Personnel Management: C-GAP

  • * IAP: International Assignment Policy

Various Certification and Award Programs

Canon has established certification and award programs to honor Group employees for their outstanding achievements.

For example, at the Canon Summit Awards, Canon honors Group companies, departments, teams and individual employees who have made a major contribution to the development of the company in terms of activities or products.

Regarding other accolades, Canon provides the Invention Award to honor employees’ contributions to inventions and intellectual property, the Quality Award for their contributions to quality improvement, the Production Innovation Award for outstanding activities leading to production-related innovations, the Canon Meister Award Systems (certification/commendation) for their contributions to advancements in manufacturing using a wide range of skills , the Canon Master Craftsman certification for their outstanding skills that Canon should pass down, the Environment Award for their excellent environmental practices, and the Procurement Innovation Award for their activities that greatly contribute to enhancing procurement functions.

Certifications and Awards in 2016
Canon Summit Awards 3 (products), 3 (activities)
Invention Award 38 (389 award winners)
Quality Award 2 Most Excellent Awards
3 Excellent Awards
1 Review Committee Award
Production Innovation Award 2 Production Innovation Excellence Awards
7 Production Innovation Merit Awards
(4 Merit Awards, 3 Focus Awards)
Skilled Technician Award 2 Canon Master Craftsman
Canon Meister Certification/ Commendation 2 Expert Grade S recipients 20 Grade 1 recipients
(Cumulative totals: 73 Expert Grade S, 320 Expert Grade 1 recipients)
Environment Award 1 Environmental Award
3 Environmental Encouragement Awards
Procurement Innovation Award 2 President’s Awards,
4 Honorable Mentions
Certifications and Awards in 2017 (As of June 30, 2017)
Production Innovation Award 2 Production Innovation Excellence Awards
8 Production Innovation Merit Awards
Skilled Technician Award 1 Canon Master Craftsman
Canon Meister Certification/ Commendation 12 Grade 1 recipients
(Cumulative totals: 73 Expert Grade S, 332 Expert Grade 1 recipients)
Procurement Innovation Award 4 Excellent Awards
3 Honorable Mentions