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The operations of the HCM Group are underpinned and made possible through relationships with many stakeholders, including our customers, suppliers, and partners. We will continue to strengthen our relationships with stakeholders as we expand our circle as a responsible company.
The HCM Group has established the “Procurement Policy” and “Guidelines for Procurement Activities” in order to carry out fair trade with its procurement partners. These documents are available for all to see through the company’s corporate website. In 2010, Hitachi, Ltd. revised its “Guidelines for Procurement Activities” following the principles of the U.N. Global Compact. Following this, we made additional revisions to our own policy and guidelines.
Also, we are focused on transaction audits and legal compliance training for employees to ensure fair trade is practiced thoroughly. Transaction audits include self-audits performed twice annually and reciprocal audits carried out within the HCM Group once annually. This ensures that audits are carried out with a high degree of transparency. Training on Japan’s Act Against Delay in ‘Payment, etc.’ to Subcontractors held for all employees involved in acceptance inspections was attended by 1,403 employees in FY2016, and all certified persons responsible for acceptance inspections have completed the course.
In FY2017 and beyond, we will continue to carry out transaction audits and provide legal compliance training to employees.
Briefing to procurement partners
With growing international interest in corporate social responsibilities, the HCM Group shares its approach to CSR with business partners to promote CSR activities across the entire supply chain. As part of our initiatives, we utilize the HITACHI GROUP Supply-Chain CSR Deployment Guidebook, which contains actions we would like suppliers to take regarding CSR, and require the suppliers to comply with the provisions therein.
In FY2016, Hitachi Ltd. revised and re-issued the “Hitachi Group CSR Procurement Guideline” based on the “Code of Conduct Version 5.1” published by the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) and taking into account the “Hitachi Group Human Rights policy” and the “Hitachi Group Conflict Minerals Procurement Policy”.
From FY2017, these new Hitachi Group guidelines will be distributed and made known to all suppliers as the scope and basis we expect of their CSR activities. Going forward, we will continue to promote CSR activities together with suppliers an expand our initiatives to include establishing a business continuity plan (BCP) covering the entire supply chain.
Companies must constantly work to improve compliance in order to encourage fair competition in their business dealings. The HCM Group’s compliance promotion structure is headed by the Compliance and Risk Management Division, which is in charge of compliance activities for the entire HCM Group. Meetings of the Compliance and Risk Management Division are convened regularly to review, plan, and evaluate the results of various compliance measures. It also works on prevention of misconducts by deliberating on the effectiveness of measures for preventing recurrence of the misconducts. We establish a Compliance Promotion Officer and Compliance Manager at each Group company and promote compliance activities in coordination with the Compliance Promotion Center of the Legal Department of HCM.
In terms of rules and regulations, in 2010 we established the HCM Group Codes of Conduct which acts as the specific code of conduct applied throughout the HCM Group. Our Codes of Conduct is thoroughly implemented by our leadership team, and we are expanding our business activities rooted in corporate ethics and legal compliance in accordance with the “basics and ethics”. To check these compliance activities, we conduct compliance audits regularly, which form part of the internal audits carried out by the Internal Auditing Office.
Also, we provide a variety of training programs to raise awareness about compliance across the entire HCM Group.
In FY2016, we held compliance training at HCM and Group companies in Japan for assistant managers and staffs with the goal of eliminating corporate and employee misconducts. This training was held at a total of three companies, including HCM, on 137 occasions, with a total of 5,018 employees taking part. At overseas Group companies, training is held in a workshop format for manager-level and higher ranking employees, officers and directors to provide more practical learning in tune with current issues. These workshops were held on 13 occasions at a total of 13 companies, with 196 employees attending. This training was completed at all of our companies in Japan and overseas (excluding two companies that newly joined the HCM Group) over the two-year period covering 2015 and 2016.
In addition, we provide e-learning training to manager-level and higher ranking employees, officers and directors on our Codes of Conduct as well as Anti-Corruption and Compliance with Competition Laws. This training is the same for all of our companies in Japan and overseas. In FY2016, a total of 2,141 employees from across the HCM Group took part. In addition, in accordance with initiatives throughout the Hitachi Group, the month of October has been designated Corporate Ethics Month, during which time we work towards the reinforcing and re-evaluating compliance.
As business becomes more global in nature, there is growing potential for procurement risks in the supply chain to become full blown management issues. In recent years, the conflict minerals (tantalum, tin, tungsten, and gold) that can directly or indirectly finance armed groups abetting human rights violations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and adjoining countries become the risk of sourcing, it is necessary for companies to promote responsible minerals procurement.
In September 2013, we established the “Hitachi Construction Machinery Group Conflict Minerals Procurement Policy” for conflict-mineral-free supply chain. In addition, our response to the issue of conflict minerals focuses on the importance of understanding the current situation. For this reason, since FY2014, we have continually carried out surveys on suppliers who handle minerals using the EICC format.
Looking forward, we will continue to carry out surveys and investigations in an effort to establish a sustainable supply chain that avoids the procurement of materials or components made with conflict minerals.