There is a widespread belief that in order to promote business that is useful to society, it is important to provide an environment in which all employees can enjoy their work and give the physical and mental health support for employees, so that they can do their best to solve issues. At OMRON, we believe that the health of each and every employee is the foundation of our business to solve social issues. Based on this belief, our top management has been promoting "health management" (*1) since 2017. To promote this initiative, OMRON has set its own quantitative targets, "Boost5," for the entire company, and is making global efforts to achieve them.
*1 Health management is registered trademark of NPO Health Management Research Institute. It is the strategic implementation of health promotion for employees and other staff from a management perspective.
About OMRON's Health Management:
In recent years, various companies have been working on health management. One of the reasons behind this is the belief that "A company's initiatives to improve the health of its employees based on its management philosophy will revitalize the organization and increase vitality and productivity, which in turn will lead to improved corporate performance and organizational value." (*2)
With more companies engaging in health management, OMRON issued the "Employee Health Management Declaration" in fiscal 2017 which is promoted by top management. This is because if the employees working at OMRON are full of vitality, grow while enjoying their work, it will lead to achieve high performance, create innovation that solves social issues.
At that time, we set a common quantitative goal for the entire company and started a company-wide initiative to achieve this goal. And from 2019, we are also expanding our initiatives globally. In each region, initiatives are implemented in accordance with local characteristics and cultures, all of which are fully supported by the company, with the health of employees as the top priority.
Let's take a look at OMRON's health management initiatives.
*2 Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry: Promoting Health Management
OMRON's health management activity policy has three axes.
The first is to "create people and organizations that drive innovation." We will create an environment that encourages positive challenges of employees so that they can find fulfillment and enjoyment in their work.
The second is to "create a state where employees are healthy in body and mind and enjoying their lives." Encourage employees to live healthily and actively enjoy not only their work but also hobbies.
The third is to "fill the company with employees who will continue to play an active role in society even after they retire from OMRON." If they can maintain and improve their health, they will be able to play an active role in the future and lead a fulfilling life while contributing to society.
To promote health management, OMRON has established five specific indicators to support company-wide health promotion along these three axes and named them "Boost5. The "Boost 5" refers to "Exercise," "Sleep," "Mental Health," "Food," and "Stop Smoking," all of which are essential for improving concentration and performance.
In order to achieve the targets for each indicator, a particular theme to focus on has been set for each fiscal year.
In fiscal 2019, the focus theme in Japan was "Smoking". We held a "Stop Smoking Marathon Event" as a measure to support quitting smoking. This is an event where they form a group of three members and support each other to quit smoking (smokers: two challengers + non-smokers: one supporter). They work together towards achieving the goal of quitting smoking over a period of three months. A total of three sessions were held over the course of a year, and about 85% of the challengers successfully achieved their goal.
Another feature of OMRON's health management is that even though the goals are the same, each country or region tackles the focus theme in their familiar way.
Initiatives in Japan
In response to the fiscal 2020 focus theme of "Exercise," we created a "radio gymnastics" video based on Japan's unique culture. Radio gymnastics is something that anyone can easily do in their daily life. It actually includes 13 different types of exercise, and it is believed that keep continuing this activity will have a positive effect on health. These videos are uploaded on the company's portal site as a form of exercise that can be done at home with family members, even as we continue to work from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This video was made by nurses and physical therapists working at OMRON, as well as players from our own professional handball team, the PINDYS. We receive many positive comments from our employees who actually participated in the radio gymnastics, like "I realized that it's a good exercise when I give it my all" or "When I try it, it works on my back and shoulders. I feel good!"
Initiatives in the U.S.
In the United States, a program called the "Summer Wellness Challenge" was implemented from July through the end of August 2020. Each employee set their own goals related to exercise and posted their activities and results on the company's group chat. Specific goals included "walking or running 5km a day". The concept of the program was designed not only to establish exercise habits, but also to remind employees to "stay active and healthy and keep connected to coworkers". Many employees participated in this program and posted their exercise activities on that site. Examples of comments by participants, "It's nice to know that everyone is doing well. I felt connected even during the COVID-19 pandemic."
Kathy Melvage, a member of the team overseeing f this program in OMRON Americas, commented on this initiative.
"Our goal was not only to invite employees to remain active, but also to encourage them to interact with their peers. We started this program with the hope of energizing them by creating opportunities to learn how others were doing and devising ways to improve their health and create interaction on social level."
Due to the effects of COVID-19, it was inevitably difficult to see each other, but even in this situation, we created opportunities for people to feel connected with each other. We were able to energize our employees not only physically, but also emotionally. Even in the face of COVID-19, we were able to create communication among our employees through our ingenuity.
As you can see, OMRON employees are actively participating in efforts to achieve Boost5, which has the effect of keeping them mentally and physically healthy and improving their performance at work. The results of a survey conducted in fiscal 2019 showed that the more Boost5 goals employees achieved (i.e., the healthier they were), the higher their performance was. The results of a survey conducted in fiscal 2019 showed that employees who achieved more of the Boost5 goals (i.e., were in a healthy state) performed better.
In addition, OMRON collects information on the degree of achievement for each of the Boost5 items from annual employee health checkups, stress checks, and publishes the results in the form of an annual "OMRON Health White Paper" for use in future measures.
There is no goal in health management that is sufficient. OMRON will continue to support the health of its employees by creating workplaces and environments where they can work with vitality and enthusiasm through visualization of their health status and continuous approaches to achieving the Boost 5 goals.
In addition, we will create innovation through employee growth and high performance while enjoying their work and solve social issues more than ever before.