Labor Union and Employee Welfare

Dialogue Meetings with the President

ITOCHU Corporation is proactive about offering employees opportunities for two-way discussions with the president. In FY2017, the president visited 6 domestic branches, which usually have limited opportunities for direct communication with the president, and held dialogue meetings. Along with these domestic meetings, the president also has dialogue meetings with our staff on overseas assignment, as well as local employees of each country when he visits one of our overseas bloc areas. In FY2018, the president held meetings at our business locations in the UK, Italy, France, South Korea, Indonesia, Singapore, and the United States. In these discussions, the president shared directly with employees, the company's management policies and his passion for their realization, while employees in turn could express their opinions to the president and ask questions directly. The meetings therefore provided extremely valuable opportunities for deepening two-way communication. Every meeting is held in a very spirited atmosphere, and touches on everything from management policies to more personal topics.

Dialogue with the Labor Union

At ITOCHU Corporation, a wide range of issues are discussed with the ITOCHU Labor Union in order to realize our corporate mission, "Committed to the Global Good." In FY2018, we held five meetings, including management meetings with the President and similar meetings with Division Companies and the Administrative Headquarters. Labor and management enter repeated and active discussions to build up a healthy relationship that enables both sides to recognize and share challenges currently surrounding the company and to study and implement improvement measures.

Organization of the ITOCHU Labor Union

Objective of the Labor Union

The objective of the Labor Union is to improve labor conditions and other economic concerns of its members. The Labor Union carries out all required operations to fulfill this objective. (Article 3, Rules of the ITOCHU Labor Union)

  • Headquarters: General meeting of delegates/Officers of the headquarters (Secretariat: Liaison for labor-management negotiations that consists of the president and secretary general)
  • Branch: Seven branches (Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Hokkaido, Tohoku, Hokuriku and Kyushu)
[Fig.]

The company is prohibited from the following:

  1. Providing disadvantageous treatment to a worker because the worker is a union member or on similar grounds
    Example: Discharging or transferring a worker because the worker went on strike as a union member or on similar grounds
  2. Refusing to bargain collectively without justifiable cause
    Example: Refusing to go to the bargaining table or having an unauthorized person attend a collective bargaining session as a person in charge
  3. Interfering with or providing financial assistance for the organization or operation of a labor union
    Example: Interfering with or interrupting the union’s events or supporting operational expenses for the union
  4. Providing disadvantageous treatment, such as dismissal, to a worker in response to an allegation made by the worker to the Labor Relations Commission
    Example: Providing treatment, such as dismissal or wage reduction, to a worker in response to an allegation made by the worker to the Labor Relations Commission or a similar action by the worker

[Fig.]
Ratio of ITOCHU Labor Union members as of April 1, 2018

Initiatives with the ITOCHU Labor Union in FY2018
April 2017 to March 2018 (every month) Health Committee
June 2017 Settlement of accountings meeting
August 2017 CFO management meeting
October 2017 Energy & Chemicals Company management meeting
December 2017 Machinery Company management meeting
August and December 2017 and January 2018 Labor-management committee regarding time management
March 2018 Management meeting with the President
Activities by the Headquarters of the Labor Union in FY2018
April and May 2017 General Meeting of Delegates
June 2017 Meeting attended by three top-ranking officers from each branch
September 2017 General Meeting of Delegates
October 2017 Sports Day
November 2017 Lecture meeting held by inviting a prominent person
February 2018 General Meeting of Delegates
March 2017 Meeting attended by three top-ranking officers from each branch
March 2018 Labor Union event at Tokyo Disneyland
March 2018 Exchange of views with members of other companies
[Photo]

Shion Shinohara

President,
ITOCHU Labor Union

Comments from the ITOCHU Labor Union President

The ITOCHU Labor Union works under the following Philosophy, Vision, and Action Guidelines.

  1. Philosophy: Under the philosophy "Moving on Together - To work actively together with enthusiasm and motivation," we create a work environment that allows employees with various characteristics, values and environmental conditions to be motivated, to actively and enthusiastically work together and to achieve the strongest individual performance.
  2. Vision: We aim to achieve a "virtuous circle of corporate management " by improving labor conditions and the economic status of members. The "virtuous circle of corporate management " means a positive circle of: improved work environment —> active participation of employees —> improved business performance of the company —> improved treatment —> improved morale —> improved work environment, and so on.
  3. Action Guidelines: The overall union (members, worksite committee members, liaison officers, delegates, branch officers and headquarters' officers) make concerted efforts in activities, with the three key concepts of "Stay ahead," "Speak up," and "Be reliable."
    • Stay ahead: Always work on something new by thinking one step ahead. Think and move forward together.
    • Be assertive: Each member should be assertive with leadership.
    • Speak up: Each member should speak up on his/her own initiative.

We will go one step further when engaging in activities, and having negotiations with and making proposals to the company, aiming for treatment and a work environment which is appropriate for a leading trading company.

Improving the Infrastructure for Employee Communication

ITOCHU Corporation works to revitalize communication between employees and provide opportunities for exchange through a range of welfare facilities and schemes. Revitalized communication helps to foster a sense of belonging and motivation to work in individual employees and also helps to invigorate the organization as a whole.

Employee Cafeteria

The employee cafeteria at the Tokyo Head Office underwent large-scale renovations in May 2013 and was transformed into a space that is brighter and a more comfortable meeting place than before We continued to take steps to make the cafeteria more attractive for employees. These include the introduction of menus created under the supervision of Kagawa Nutrition University*, which are offered under the name of "Wellness Cafeteria," for helping employees improve their health. They also include the revision of menus and a change in the room layout, which were done in response to requests from employees. As a result, nearly 1,600 people use the employee cafeteria every day.

The special cafeteria, which can also be used for eating meals with customers, is opened as a pub at night. It helps boost internal communication and communication with external people by regularly holding a Happy Hour, during which alcoholic beverages are offered for free or at bargain prices. In 2017, the menus were fully revised and the cafeteria underwent a major renovation. It therefore contributes to the interaction of employees over meals.

*Kagawa Nutrition University is a pioneering force in nutrition education. The menu it helped create focuses on daily specials offering healthy dishes that fulfill different conditions, such as an energy value of around 600 kcal, sodium chloride equivalent of 3 g or less, and a vegetable serving of 140 g or more.

"SOGO-KAI" Associations

"SOGO-KAI" associations are organizations in which fellow employees assemble and enjoy the same sports or cultural activities. More than forty such associations are active within the company and boast more than 800 employee members. The associations are not limited to current employees of ITOCHU Corporation. Many former employees and Group company employees also take part. Through sports and cultural activities, these associations promote exchanges and communication across different generations and organizations.