We provide all employees the opportunity to build and advance their career.
Canon has positioned building a more dynamic and merit-based HR management system as one of the key strategies in Phase VI of the Excellent Global Corporation Plan. Based on this strategy, we will strive to develop human resources in various fields such as management, research and development, and marketing.
With 353 operational sites worldwide as of the end of 2020, the globalization of Canon’s operations is proceeding apace. Against this backdrop, we are stepping up training to develop human resources with leadership abilities that can be utilized on the international stage.
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 that can spur innovation in a global environment.
Canon established the Canon Global Assignment Policy (CGAP) as an international assignment system for its Group companies worldwide to stimulate international personnel exchanges, not only from Japan to other countries, but also from other countries to Japan, and internationally from Europe to the United States, 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.
CGAP is an international personnel dispatch policy shared by our Group companies, and personnel assignment policies in each respective region are based on it. Combining these policies allows us to further promote personnel exchanges and to share basic philosophies and systems, 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 CGAP, 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 2020, a total of 928 employees were deployed on international assignments under these programs.
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 employees who are 30 years old or younger to engage in practical study at local companies in Asia. Started in 1995, the program to date has deployed a total of 118 people. The program sends trainees to countries and regions where languages other than English are used on a regular basis in professional settings. After roughly six months of language training at a local university, trainees spend about one year gaining practical experience at Asian affiliates. Meanwhile, 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 68 employees. In 2020, we launched the Canon Global Marketing & Sales Trainee Program for new employees. With the aim of fostering human resources who will play an active role in Canon’s future global marketing efforts, participants spend a year and a half both in Japan and overseas acquiring sales experience and language proficiency.
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 to date, a total of 127 employees have participated in the program, studying at universities abroad. In line with our strategy to improve our R&D system in the United States and Europe, we plan to select several employees each year for overseas study.
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 five core specializations. Each committee develops rankbased training programs, from new hires to junior engineers and all the way up to veteran leaders, as well as conducts courses and carries out other initiatives. We also offer training in specialized areas not represented by these committees, such as analytical technology. In 2020, a total of 197 programs were held in these specializations, with 5,337 engineers from Group companies in Japan taking part.
Furthermore, in 2018 Canon Inc. established the Canon Institute of Software Technology (CIST) to cultivate software engineers. The institute works to undertake systematic and continuous human resource development, from increasing the skills of the engineers in charge of developing software for our products to providing foundational training for new employees and those seeking to work in a new field. In other initiatives for developing software engineers, we sent five personnel to attend the National Institute of Informatics’ top SE course for developing super architects, as well as sending four people to the Smart SE Course, a business education program in the AI, IoT, and big data technology field sponsored by Waseda University.
At Canon, we are focusing on developing human resources who support production activities, mainly through the Monozukuri Advancement Center of Canon Inc.
In 2020, 39 employees working at three overseas production bases took part in 11 training programs organized by the Monozukuri Advancement Center.
In order to promote training at overseas manufacturing sites, Canon also focuses on instructordevelopment training that seeks to develop instructors for technological and technical skills training as well as workplace management training. In 2020, five training sessions were held, with 15 employees participating.
A technical skills testing program, following the same standards as in Japan, has also been established at overseas sites. In 2020, testing was carried out for seven types of work skills, including injection molding, board mounting, and metal stamping, at a total of eight sites in Thailand, Vietnam, China, and Malaysia, with 494 employees participating.
To motivate employees and enhance skill specialization, Canon Inc. maintains an educational system for rankbased, 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 the actions and behaviors defined by our guiding principles. We also supplement this with elective training that includes e-learning programs and other programs to support selfdevelopment. These training programs cover such issues as harassment prevention and compliance.
For the development of management personnel, we operate the Canon Management School and the Canon Leadership Development Program (LEAD). The Canon Management School, aimed at division managers and general managers, is designed to develop top-class management leaders. Led by our Chairman & CEO, the school invites as instructors experts from such fields as politics, foreign diplomacy, economics, and science and technology. The program has produced many of our Group executives. The LEAD program is designed to help candidates switch to a management-oriented mindset and develop their leadership abilities while also reinforcing strategy planning and execution capabilities. It provides training prior to and after appointments to management positions, as well as assessments prior to appointments. Our goal is to further reinforce efforts to systematically cultivate the next generation at Canon, concentrating on the development of management personnel as well as personnel for global, technological, and manufacturing roles.
On average, Canon Inc. employees spent about 15 hours in training in 2020. Related training costs per employee amounted to ¥167,000 at Canon Inc., and about ¥83,500 at Canon Group companies in Japan and overseas sales companies.
Since we evaluate the conduct and performance of employees under our position-based pay system, supervisors have meetings with their team members individually three times a year—at the start, midpoint, and end—to confirm duties and targets, monitor progress, and discuss future career development based on a “career sheet” filled out by the employee.
When discussing the evaluation, supervisors offer
advice and guidance on improving results and work
performance. This enables employees to objectively
understand their own strengths and weaknesses,
which aids them in achieving further growth.
Supervisors also use this information in future
development plans for the employee.
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 2020, 189 employees were transferred through this system.
We also provide a trainee-style career matching system featuring a combination of training and internal recruitment. Employees who wish to take on new work challenges in a field where they have no experience can receive training opportunities to gain requisite skills, and take up a position based on their skill level.
To offer a more diverse range of learning opportunities and support the career development of self-motivated employees, we are developing e-learning content that can be accessed by mobile devices, for instance on weekends or after work during the campaign period to promote work-life balance. In 2020, approximately 5,000 employees participated in these programs.
Canon holds Creative Life Seminars for employees when they reach the ages of 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.
Canon aims to realize individual and organizational growth at the same time as achieving success in business. To this end, we have established a dedicated division for organizational development, which supports organizational invigoration through consulting on increasingly diverse organizational challenges, post-activity support, and rank-specific training. As of 2020, the division has provided support to 460 divisions and 16,000 employees, including Group companies worldwide.
Canon has established certification and award programs to honor Group employees for their outstanding achievements.
At the Canon Summit Awards, Canon honors Group companies, divisions, teams and individual employees who have made a major contribution to the development of the company in terms of activities or products. Canon recognizes employees with numerous other accolades: the Invention Award for employees who make inventions and contribute to intellectual property activities; the Quality Award and the Production Innovation Award for excellence that contributes to improvements in quality and productivity; the Canon Meister Certification/Commendation for contributions to advancements in manufacturing using a wide range of skills; the Canon Master Craftsman certification for outstanding skills that Canon should pass down; the Environment Award for excellent environmental practices; and, the Procurement Innovation Award for activities that greatly contribute to enhancing procurement functions.