Promotion of Health and Productivity Management



Promoting Employee Health Management by Establishing the "Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Philosophy"

Establishing a framework for promoting health and productivity management

The Brother Group aims to create superior value through manufacturing and deliver products and services to customers around the world. With this purpose in mind, all group employees are working every day on a global stage.
As stipulated in the Brother Group Global Charter, the basis of such activities, the Brother Group values taking care of the health of every employee so that they can strive to achieve their goals, and ultimately, contribute to the group's success.

In September 2016, Brother Industries, Ltd. (BIL) established the Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Philosophy. Under this philosophy and the leadership of the Chief Health Officer (CHO), the Brother Group has been strategically undertaking various activities.

Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Philosophy

The Brother Group considers the physical and mental health of every employee as an important "asset," and thinks demonstrating various capabilities "positively, pleasantly and powerfully" leads to the Group's growth.
Every employee's health is the basis of the Brother Group's continued development and responds to the needs of society, such as extension of healthy life expectancy. To realize health and productivity management, the Company, labor union, and health insurance association collaborate and strategically strive to maintain and promote employees' health.

Ichiro Sasaki
Representative Director & President
Chief Health Officer
Brother Industries, Ltd.

Health & productivity management promotion structure

BIL has established the Health Management Center, which manages the health of the Brother Group employees, develops mental health measures, and promotes good health. It has been offering effective and efficient approaches to maintaining and promoting the health of employees while implementing the PDCA cycle and cooperating with the Brother Health Insurance Society and the Brother Industries Labor Union. Meanwhile, the Brother Group facilities in respective countries and regions have been employing industrial doctors or working with medical institutions to maintain and improve the physical and mental health of employees.

Brother Group health & productivity management promotion structure

Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Promotion Structure

Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Promotion Council

The Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Promotion Council, composed of the safety and health managers at BIL and the group companies in Japan, holds an annual meeting* to identify issues about employee health and decide on action policies and targets for the next fiscal year and beyond. At the meeting, activities by the Brother Health Insurance Society and excellent activities by the group companies are reported. In this way, the meeting serves as an opportunity to share information on effective and efficient activities.

In FY2018, the council launched an awards program to perform a comprehensive evaluation of efforts in health and productivity management and honor group companies that have achieved excellence in such efforts as "healthy companies" with the CHO awards. Since then, the council has recognized outstanding group companies through this program.

  • In FY2020, except for certain participants, the meeting was held online to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Health support meeting

The Health Support Meeting is jointly organized by BIL's Health Management Center, the Health Promotion Center of the Brother Health Insurance Society, and Brother Memorial Hospital. It decides specific activities to achieve numerical targets, discusses implementation methods, and evaluates the results based on the policies set by the Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Promotion Council, and also organizes collaborative events with the Brother Industries Labor Union.

"Healthy Brother 2025" -a set of long-term targets for employee health

The Brother Group Health & Productivity Management Promotion Council formulated the "Healthy Brother 2025," a set of long-term targets to be achieved by FY2025, based on the Health & Productivity Management Philosophy and with the aim of allowing employees to actively demonstrate their abilities in a wide variety of areas.

To achieve the "Healthy Brother 2025," the Brother Group is promoting activities focused on enabling employees to live every day positively, pleasantly and powerfully, to engage in self-directed health promotion, and to balance work and health in compliance with safety and health laws and regulations.

Targets in the "Healthy Brother 2025" and results (at Brother Industries, Ltd.)
Items Targets
(by FY2025)
FY2018 FY2019 FY2020
Rate of employees with poor control of blood-sugar levels*1 0% 0.5% 0.4% 0.5%
Rate of non-metabolic syndrome employees*1 80% or above 73.8% 73.0% 84.8%
Smoking rate*1 Less than 10% 14.9% 13.7% 12.4%
Cancer screening rate*2 95% or above 96.6% 96.1% 95.5%
Secondary cancer screening rate 90% or above 80.7% 83.5% 83.9%
Rate of employees absent from work for one month or more*1 Not more than 0.5% 1.1% 1.4% 0.7%
Participation rate in line care training*1 100% 91.9% 81.0% 93.5%
Rate of employees maintaining five or more healthy life-style habits*1 70% or above 66.6% 66.6% 68.5%
Rate of employees with high stress levels*1(based on a stress check test) Less than 5% 10.1% 10.0% 9.8%
Rate of employees with adequate sleep*1 70% or above 62.0% 61.1% 68.9%
Rate of employees maintaining exercise habits*1(once or more and 30 minutes or more a week) 60% or above 40.6% 40.8% 47.3%
  1. The rate among BIL employees
  2. The rate among BIL employees aged 35 and older

Data Related to Health

Employee health management and status (at Brother Industries, Ltd.)
Items FY2018 FY2019 FY2020
Employee health management
Regular health checkup Participation rate*1 100% 100% 100%
Participation rate in comprehensive health screening for individuals aged 35 and older*2 96.4% 96.1% 95.5%
Detection rate 57.0% 60.6% 61.6%
Participation rate in secondary screening 75.8% 76.6% 83.9%
Specific health checkup*3 Participation rate*4 96.1% 99.4% 99.4%
Metabolic syndrome rate 12.3% 14.2% 15.2%
Stress check test Participation rate*1 88.0% 89.0% 87.9%
Brother Healthy Life Months Participation rate*1 39.9% 35.1% 29.4%
Satisfaction rate 91.0% 94.0% 91.0%
Employee health status
Actual annual working hours per employee 1,956 hours 1,952 hours 1,991 hours
Annual non-scheduled working hours per employee 196.0 hours 197.8 hours 216.1 hours
Average years of employment*5 17.1 years 17.2 years 17.3 years
Voluntary turnover rates/Number of employees leaving*5,6 1.4%/54 individuals 1.3%/50 individuals 1.0%/39 individuals
Rate of paid leave usage/Number of used leave days 82.8%/16.6 days 82.2%/17.2 days 73.3%/14.7 days
Number of employees with long working hours Number of employees whose non- statutory working hours exceeded more than 75 hours within a month 2 employees 2 employees 16 employees
Lifestyle-related diseases Diabetes*1 5.3% 5.7% 5.7%
High blood pressure*1 9.2% 9.8% 9.7%
Hyperlipidemia*1 13.4% 14.5% 14.3%
Smoking rate*1 14.9% 13.7% 12.4%
Rate of employees maintaining exercise habits*1 Employees exercising once or more and around 30 minutes a week 40.6% 40.8% 47.3%
Stress check test Employees with high stress levels 10.1% 10.0% 9.8%
Average medical expenses per employee 115,246 yen 129,453 yen 129,744 yen
Employee satisfaction level The score of the question "Do you feel a strong sense of pride as a member of the Brother Group?" in the employee awareness survey (five-point scale evaluation) 3.79 3.79 3.88
  1. The rate among BIL employees
  2. The rate among BIL employees aged 35 and older
  3. A checkup specified by Japan's Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare
  4. The rate among employees who are eligible for a specific health checkup
  5. Doesn’t include incoming seconded employees, temporary employees or fixed-term employees
  6. Employees who resigned for personal reasons

Approaches for Maintaining and Improving Mental and Physical Health

Aiming to maintain and improve the health of employees in the entire Brother Group

The industrial physicians and health nurses of BIL's Health Management Center visit some group facilities every year, but these visits were not conducted in FY2020 due to the impact of COVID-19. Instead, consultations were conducted online. Specifically, in May, checks were conducted on employees seconded from BIL for seven manufacturing facilities and four sales facilities about their current state—such as daily life and healthcare situation—as well as problems and things they wished to discuss. Working with the Human Resources Department, actions were taken and advice given as necessary. Subsequently, the center continued to conduct follow-up consultation and give advice regarding their concerns.

Mental health: preventing disorders, detecting them at an early stage, and supporting employees to return to work

BIL has been continuously providing mental health education to its employees since 2007 with the aim of helping them become aware of their own stress and take appropriate measures against it (primary prevention) and helping superiors identify and support their subordinates suffering from incipient mental disorders (secondary prevention). The company also helps employees who have developed mental disorders continue to work in their own ways, assisting such employees to return to work (tertiary prevention) in collaboration with their workplaces.

All employees are required to take self-care training, which is designed for primary prevention, every five years. The training gives participants an opportunity to learn from actual case examples and think about how to control their health and cope with their stress. In FY2020, online training was conducted as a measure against COVID-19.

Online self-care training Online self-care training

To prevent mental health problems arising from various changes in the environment such as the spread of COVID-19 and working from home, BIL introduced a self-check website for all employees. Creating regularly opportunities for self-checks led to impetus for consulting the Health Management Center. In addition, BIL distributed mental care letters to those facing high levels of stress as determined from the results of the stress checks. The letters form a series and offered practical skills matching the concerns and problems of each individual and served as impetus for mental care.

Mental care letter Mental care letter

In addition, all employees, including full-time, temporary, loaned, and dispatched, participate in an employee awareness survey which is conducted once a year. The survey grasps and analyzes a diverse range of employee awareness, including work-related stress, human relations or treatment in the workplace, and the level of pride an employee has in the company. To this end, we are working to create a healthy work environment and improve the job satisfaction of all employees.

Physical health: conducting health promotion activities, curbing passive smoking, and providing quit-smoking support

BIL's Health Management Center designates every October and November as the "Brother Healthy Life Months" and is engaged in various efforts in cooperation with the Workplace Safety and Disaster Prevention Group of BIL's Human Resources Department, the Brother Health Insurance Society, and the Brother Industries Labor Union.

In FY2020, based on the theme of exercise, measures with the goal of building a habit of exercise were conducted. Taking reference from the RIZAP Method, online health classes were conducted 28 times under the title "Aim for a Smart Body—Creating a Habit of Exercise" with 1,389 participants in total. In addition, after the health classes, RIZAP e-learning sessions were also prepared, and 250 employees took these sessions based on the results of drawing lots. Although both were optional, many employees participated in them, and 90% of the participants of the health classes answered that the classes created an impetus for (continuing to) exercise.

Notice of Brother Healthy Life Months Notice of Brother Healthy Life Months

As for measures to prevent passive smoking, we introduced "Quit Smoking in Pairs" as a company-wide activity with the participation of non-smokers. In the past, employees who wish to try to quit smoking submitted individual applications and were supported by industrial physicians and health nurses. Under the new Quit Smoking in Pairs, the "Quit Smoking Challenger" forms a pair with the "Quit Smoking Supporter" who is a non-smoker. Together, they take on the challenge of quitting smoking. Across the Brother Group, there were a total of 117 pairs who applied, of which 92 pairs succeeded in quitting smoking for three months. The success rate of 79% is higher than the previous quit-smoking support.

Materials on "Quit Smoking in Pairs" Materials on "Quit Smoking in Pairs"

For measures to prevent cancer, efforts were focused on education as initial prevention. We conducted the "Cancer Prevention Stamp Rally 2020" using smartphones to communicate various information to employees. In the stamp rally, we provided information—such as that regarding cancer and hepatitis virus—using email based on the theme "Cancer and Infection" and conducted events such as online seminars by doctors and round-table discussions with those inside and outside the company who have experienced cancer. Employees earn stamps by reading provided materials or participating in seminars and can apply for privileges using the stamps earned. Approximately 1,300 employees participated in the stamp rally and approximately 2,700 employees read the education materials regarding cancer.

Cancer Prevention Stamp Rally 2020 Cancer Prevention Stamp Rally 2020

Measures against infections -prevention education and infection control measures

The Brother Group is a global enterprise with facilities in more than 40 countries and regions and with many employees traveling for work or engaged in temporary assignments across national and regional borders. Since country-specific or region-specific high-risk infections exist, the group has been striving to prevent the transmission and spread of such and other infections.

At BIL, for employees who are going to travel from Japan to other countries, the industrial physicians of the Health Management Center implement health education that helps such employees prevent and raise their awareness of HIV, malaria, and other infections by providing their transmission routes, incubation periods, and symptoms. For employees on temporary assignments, the company provides the "leaflet on health management abroad," which covers information and cautions necessary for living outside Japan, and posts information about infection epidemics on the intranet. At the Brother Group facilities outside Japan, the industrial physicians and health nurses of the Health Management Center check the status of local infection epidemics and so forth during their annual visits.

When the risk of infection epidemics increases, BIL sets up an infection control committee composed of management personnel, members of the Human Resources Dept., industrial physicians, and so forth as a subcommittee of the Risk Management Committee to collect the latest information and discuss measures based on the information.

The Brother Group will remain committed to maintaining and enhancing the physical and mental health of employees.

Evaluation by External Entities

The Brother Group's proactive initiatives for health and productivity management are also highly recognized by external entities, receiving various certifications and awards.

For more details, please refer to the link: "CSR Management-Evaluation by External Entities- Evaluation Related to Health and Productivity Management".

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