Astellas is endeavoring to foster a workplace in which all employees can concentrate on their work with a sense of security. The Company recognizes that in nurturing an ideal environment and offering a wide range of welfare and benefit programs that help balance work and personal lives, employees are better placed to carry out their tasks with vigor and to take full advantage of their capabilities.
The effective use of human resources is also a part of our management strategy. In this context, we promote diversity management in an effort to attract a broad spectrum of employees boasting unique backgrounds. This focus on diversity is consistent with the Company's goal of creating a new set of values and promoting business innovation.
Well aware that work-life balance and diversity are closely related, Astellas will continue to undertake a range of initiatives that focus on these two themes.
Various Work Schedule Systems
Individual employee roles and performance form the foundation of Astellas' human resources evaluation system. Getting the most out of employee capabilities, we have introduced various work schedule systems that acknowledge diverse working styles including the Flexible working hours system, the De facto work system for outside work and the Discretionary work system. In this manner, Astellas Pharma Inc. is giving employees the discretion to set working hours to suit their professional duties. In fiscal 2015, over 98% of both our male and female workforce was covered by the aforementioned or other systems.
In addition, our Group companies in Japan have adopted the Flexible working hours system. Approximately 60% including male and female employees can avail themselves of this system.
Note: Key management staff do not fall within the scope of work schedule systems and are accordingly not included in the preceding data.
Child-Care Support Initiatives
Declining birthrate is a substantial issue in Japan, and it is essential to support families raising children and promote the creation of an environment with far fewer barriers. Companies, too, are required to take initiatives for a harmonious balance between work and child care.
Astellas Pharma Inc. acquired the Kurumin Mark in 2007 and 2012, certifying its compliance with the Act on Advancement of Measures to Support Raising Next-Generation Children.
Communication is a key component of our child-care and child-raising support endeavors. In an effort to facilitate the easy and smooth return to work after completing maternity or childcare leave, Astellas holds a variety of support events for the benefit of employees while still on leave. These events help provide up-to-date information concerning the Company, opportunities to undertake personal development and training as well as details and access to new programs.
In addition to the support provided under corporate agreements with companies that provide baby sitting services, and daycare financial assistance including support when returning to work, Astellas offers such diverse child-care support programs as extensions to the terms of the Shortened Work Hours for Childcare Program and the Working at Home Program.
The General Employer Action Plan for creating an environment facilitating work and family-life balance and communicating it to employees formulated by Astellas in 2014 (required by law) is presented briefly as follows.
Plan period: April 1, 2014 to March 31, 2018 (4 years)
|Goal (during the plan term)||Measures|
|Promote awareness of support programs for employees undertaking child care or nursing care.
Discuss, plan, and implement new support programs.
|Promote awareness of support programs continuously for employees during pregnancy or after childbirth.
Provide information to employees for managing both nursing care and work.
Conduct surveys to comprehend current situations about employees undertaking nursing care.
Plan and implement new family care support programs.
|Discuss, plan, and implement career support programs for employees managing both family care and work.||Comprehend current situations of employees managing both family care and work, and clarify issues in developing their career.
Plan and implement career support programs
|Conduct regional contribution activities in which local children can participate, as activities for sound upbringing of children in the local area around our offices.||Plan and hold events that lead to local children's correct understandings and interests about medicines.|
Programs That Address Major Events in Employees' Lives
Promoting Opportunities for Woman to Excel (Japan)
Diversity among human resources includes differing ethnic groups, nationalities, genders, and age, and issues vary according to country and region. Recognizing that diversity in terms of gender could be improved, Astellas Pharma Inc. launched its diverse human resource initiatives by first considering the active roles of women in the workforce. We must change our work environment, employee awareness and corporate culture to enable women to more completely utilize their abilities at work. We also have to overcome issues that make it more difficult for people from diverse backgrounds to demonstrate their abilities. We believe these initiatives will help Astellas strengthen its overall competitiveness. To this end we established Diversity & Inclusion Group in fiscal 2008, so as to implement change management to raise awareness and to encourage new behavior among employees, managers, and women themselves. At the same time, we also reformed our business processes and the structures and operations of our human resource management systems in a broader restructuring. We closed the Diversity & Inclusion Group in fiscal 2010, but kept its core mission alive as we moved toward a structure able to take on a more diverse range of initiatives in the planning and operation of employee programs.
In fiscal 2013, our efforts were recognized and we were awarded the "Diversity Management Selection 100" by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) for our initiatives to actively promote diversity among our employees.
In fiscal 2015, we were selected as a Nadeshiko Brand component by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE). This honor has been given for excellence in promoting the involvement of women in the workplace as a listed company.
In fiscal 2015, women made up 27.5% of Astellas' workforce, 7.3% of key management staff are held by women.
Green Supply Support Office
Astellas believes that one of its social responsibilities is to provide people with disabilities with work opportunities suitable to their skills and abilities, so that they can pursue independent lifestyles and actively participate in society. We have striven to create appropriate work environments and established a special subsidiary in order to achieve this goal.
As a specific initiative, from April 2011, a Group subsidiary created the Green Supply Support Office which undertakes a variety of activities such as collection and processing of confidential documents, looking after the greenery, growing flowers, shrubs and trees of Tsukuba Research Center. In October 2014, we opened a new Green Supply Support Office also in Yaizu Pharmaceutical Research Center, which undertakes a variety of activities such as cleaning uniforms and shoes of employees, collection and processing confidential documents, and janitorial services. People with disabilities working in Green Supply Support Office has taken a step towards independence as "green staff".
In addition, from fiscal 2013, we participated in general incorporated association Accessibility Consortium of Enterprises (ACE), and aims to "Establish a new employment model of people with disabilities with society which contribute to the growth of the company."
People with disabilities employed
|FY 2012||FY 2013||FY 2014||FY 2015|
|People with disabilities employed as a percentage of workforce||2.23%||2.25%||2.05%||2.16%|
In addition to legally required health checkups and special health examinations, Astellas offers voluntary examinations and biosafety health examinations for those who handle pathogens or clinical materials.
Follow-ups after a health examination are a key component of its health management program, and the Company encourages employees to take a second health examination if a more precise diagnosis or retesting is deemed necessary.
As a result of health examinations, 23.8% of Astellas Group employees in Japan required retesting or a more precise checkup in fiscal 2015. Of these, 2.5% have not been retested.
We will enhance our follow-ups on employees with health risks, and encourage them to proactively managing their own health, through such methods as early retesting. Health Insurance Association recommends walking more, dieting, and making changes in lifestyle as ways to improve health, ideas embodied in its health enhancement program. In fiscal 2015, 1,444 employees participated in this program.
Mental Health Care
Mental health problems can arise due to a variety of factors, such as stress from work or daily life. Astellas has a system in place for employees to seek counseling with psychiatrists or help through the independent Employee Assistance Program (EAP)*1.
Since 2008, we also offer mental health checkups based on "The Brief Job Stress Questionnaire" published by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare.
From fiscal 2016, we conduct a stress check test based on the regulation and adjust work environment by considering results.
*1 A part of the Employee Assistance Program, which helps employees with mental health issues.
Prevention of Overwork
Long working hours is said to lead to physical, mental health disorders. As prevention of overwork measures in Astellas, we use time management system to grasp properly. From fiscal 2015, we undertook "Work Style Reform". The purpose of the project is to enable the coordination of an enhanced life with a highly productive and creative work style for each individual. We have launched “Working Style Reform Project” with three pillars to promote a change in the mindset, to improve work processes, and review various systems.
Supporting Volunteer Activities
In Japan, we have introduced systems for supporting employees who engage in volunteer work.
Our Volunteer Leave Program allows for up to five days of leave to be taken each year, to support participation in activities in social welfare, environmental protection, disaster relief, and international cooperation, and for the acquisition of knowledge and technical skills necessary for volunteer activities.
The Volunteer Leave of Absence System also supports an employee' volunteer activities over the long term, and allows leaves of absence of up to three years.
The Bone-Marrow Registration Leave Program reflects our respect of employees' wishes to donate their bone marrow. The system lets employees take special leave to register and donate.
The Changing Tomorrow Day, which was launched in fiscal 2010, is our effort to encourage all employees to participate in volunteer activities. It has led to a higher awareness of volunteering among our employees.
Sickness and Injury Leave
An unexpected illness or injury can be a life-changing event. While employees often recover from using paid annual leave over a brief period, a system is needed to support employees during a longer period recuperation from an illness or injury.
In fiscal 2015, 35 employees at Astellas Pharma Inc. participated in the Short-Term Disability Leave. The Short-Term Disability Leave of up to 30 business days shall be granted when an employee requires additional or continued hospitalization and/or recuperation at home after receiving medical treatment for one month or more. This leave shall commence immediately after one month.
If more time is needed than allowed under the Short-Term Disability Leave, Astellas offers support systems including medical treatment benefits provided by Kyosaikai (a mutual aid association for regular employees) and income indemnity insurance for employees with long-term disabilities-a group insurance benefit.