Human resources development policy and action plan
Basic philosophy for human resources development
The West Group positions the company as “a place of self-realization for employees” and positively supports each employee’s voluntary efforts for self-improvement. With a basic principle of on-the-job-training (OJT) in which employees can tackle various tasks at work, the West Group holds in-house seminars and study sessions to encourage employees to tackle new tasks. In FY2020, the West Group started to expand learning opportunities, including West Academy and other Off-JT, for the purpose of sharing knowledge about electronics within the Group and urging employees to acquire qualifications.
Moreover, efforts for self-improvement to learn about industry research or acquire industry qualifications or specialist knowledge are also encouraged, and the West Group provides subsidies for examination fees, etc.
Training program for new employees
Training is given to new employees to help them understand the corporate philosophy, action guidelines, compliance, organizational structure, business content, etc. of the West Group.
Number of participants: Group-wide total of 31 persons
Compliance training is given to all persons working in the West Group once each year to ensure that they pay constant attention to corporate compliance.
Number of participants: Group-wide total of 392 persons
In-house engineers give lectures for the purpose of sharing knowledge about electronics and encouraging participants to acquire qualifications. Employees at business sites around the nation can attend the Academy classes via the Internet.
Number of participants: Group-wide total of 65 persons
Encouragement of knowledge acquisition and skills training
The West Group actively encourages employees to attend external training sessions to acquire the specialized knowledge required for each field, for instance by paying the costs of such sessions. Every year, employees attend many seminars, including those for learning construction technologies, etc. and acquiring relevant qualifications, obtaining specialized knowledge in management, finance, accounting, labor affairs, legal affairs, auditing, etc., and learning marketing methodologies.
Number of participants: Group-wide total of 84 persons
Promoting the advancement of women in the workplace and fostering the next generation
Promoting the advancement of women in the workplace
In accordance with the Act on the Promotion of Female Participation and Career Advancement in the Workplace, the West Group is working to improve the in-house environment to ensure that female employees can enjoy an invigorating working life in the company.
●The difference between male and female employees in terms of the average number of years of continuous service is only 1.2 years, indicating that the willingness to work is almost at the same level for males and females.
●In the fiscal year ended August 31, 2021, two female directors were appointed at Group companies.
The ratio of female officers has been less than 5% and the West Group intends to increase their number, taking into consideration work-life balance and other needs.
The Act on the Promotion of Female Participation and Career Advancement in the Workplace
In accordance with this Act, business operators are required to develop an encouraging working environment where female workers can play an active role. Accordingly, companies with 301 or more full-time employees are required to develop and disclose an action plan to enable female workers to play an active role. (The number will be 101 or more from April 1, 2022 following amendments to the legislation.)
Fostering the next generation
In accordance with the Act on Advancement of Measures to Support Raising Next-Generation Children, the West Group is taking the following steps to improve the employment environment for supporting employees in balancing work and parental duties.
●The West Group familiarizes employees with maternity leave, a childcare leave system, benefits, etc. and encourages them via the Intranet and other means to use them.
●The West Group provides exemptions from prescribed working hours to employees returning from childcare leave, including those who foster children aged 3 and above, to help them balance work and parental duties.
●The West Group has established a consultation desk for female workers so that they are provided consultation for their health and work during pregnancy or after childbirth.
The Act on Advancement of Measures to Support Raising Next-Generation
The Act prescribes details that need to be addressed and the direction of efforts for national and local public institutions and business operators in developing an environment in which the next generation can live and grow in good health.
Based on this Act, business operators with more than 100 employees are required to develop an action plan mainly for improving the employment environment for help employees balance work with their parental duties.
The West Group Statement regarding Initiatives for Respect of Human Rights
The West Group conducts transparent management in its global business centered on renewable energy for the benefit of all stakeholders. Moreover, we strive to ensure corporate activities in compliance with laws and regulations based on the West Group Code of Ethics, respect the views of individual countries, regions and cultures, and consider human rights issues such as privacy and discrimination.
We also request our business partners (suppliers of renewable energy related equipment and others) to conduct responsible corporate activities in respect for human rights in accordance with the West Group Code of Ethics that prescribes the protection of and respect for human rights, the elimination of forced labor and the prohibition of child labor.
The West Group is making every effort to achieve a sustainable society, by providing green energy for future generations and adhering to principles of business ethics through cooperation with its business partners.
August 30, 2021
West Holdings Corporation
Eiichiro Egashira, President & Representative Director
The West Group Code of Ethics
Article 1 (General provisions)
The Board of Directors of West Holdings Corporation (the “Company”) shall establish the West Group Code of Ethics (the “Code”) to be observed by all Directors and Executive Officers of and all persons employed by the West Group companies (the “Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group”).
General Affairs Department in the Code shall indicate General Affairs Department of West Holdings Corporation.
Article 2 (Social mission)
The West Group shall promote a wider use of green energy and contribute to building an environment for the world and children in the future. Moreover, it shall build smart cities that mainly use green energy and expand the development of low-carbon communities.
Article 3 (Focus on customer benefits)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall act in consideration of the best interests of customers.
Article 4 (Compliance)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall recognize that their acts of dishonesty may considerably undermine the Group’s credibility and that how difficult it is to recover that credibility. Accordingly, the Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall correctly understand the significance of and adhere to all applicable laws and regulations, rules, etc.
Article 5 (Prohibition of pursuit of personal gain)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall act for the interest of the Group, whenever they have the opportunity. Moreover, the Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall not use the facilities or information of the Company or their positions at the Company for their own interests.
Article 6 (Prevention of conflict of interests)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall not conduct any act that causes or may be seen as causing any conflict of interest with the West Group. The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group and their relatives shall not gain illegal personal advantages from the West Group by using their positions in the Group.
Article 7 (Confidentiality)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall safeguard the confidentiality of customer information, other information that comes to their knowledge during the course of their business activities and information about the West Group, unless it is deemed appropriate or legally mandated to disclose such information.
Article 8 (Fair trade)
1. The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall respect fair business customs and practices of the regions in which the West Group conducts business, in order to ensure compliance with the effective range of laws and regulations applicable to the Group’s business, and focus on interacting in a fair manner with all customers, business partners, competitors, officers, employees and others of the West Group. Moreover, the Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall not inflict disadvantages on others through concealment, fabrication and falsification of information, misuse of confidential information, misrepresentation of material facts or other unfair practices.
2. The West Group shall not conduct any transaction with antisocial forces or groups.
3. The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall, when engaging in gift-giving or entertainment with officers, employees and others of private sector groups, ensure that such gift-giving and entertainment be within the scope of social common sense. Moreover, the Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall not give gifts or entertainment to public employees, unless they obtain prescribed approval by the West Group companies.
Article 9 (Protection and appropriate use of company assets)
Assets of the West Group shall be used only for lawful purposes. Moreover, the Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall safeguard the assets of the West Group and utilize them effectively.
Article 10 (Retention of records)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall prepare operational and financial documents of the West Group and retain them for prescribed periods in accordance with applicable laws and regulations and internal rules of the Company or the West Group companies. Moreover, in relation to lawsuits or audits by auditors and others, the fabrication of false documents and intentional concealment or destruction of relevant documents shall be strictly prohibited.
Article 11 (Initiatives for environmental conservations)
The West Group shall always be aware of its responsibility to protect the environment and shall positively address environmental issues.
Article 12 (Social contribution activities)
The West Group shall positively and continuously participate in various activities in society as a corporate citizen and contribute to society.
Article 13 (Respect for human rights)
1. The West Group shall respect human rights and shall not discriminate or harass anyone on the grounds of nationality, race, ethnic group, gender, age, religion, faith, social status, physical or mental disability, etc.
2. The West Group shall maintain sound and transparent relations with politicians and governments, comply with relevant laws and regulations and act without hampering the freedom of ideologies of officers and employees.
3. The West Group shall ensure equal opportunity in employment and maintain a sound and comfortable working environment for the Officers, Employees, etc. of the West Group.
Article 14 (Public announcement)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall follow the instructions, etc. of the officer in charge of public relations of the Company, when they make public announcements regarding the West Group’s business by responding to interviews, etc.
Article 15 (Reporting illegal or unethical acts)
In the event that the Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group notice unlawful or unethical acts, including matters regarding accounting and accounting audits, they shall promptly report (blow the whistle) to the appropriate department, etc. indicated by the Company or the West Group companies.
* [Report (whistleblowing) destination] Officers of the West Group → Corporate Auditor; Employees of the West Group → General Affairs Department 2. Persons at the contact desk for such reports (whistleblowing) in General Affairs Department shall investigate whether or not such acts have been committed and details of such acts and take appropriate corrective measures or measures to prevent recurrence of such acts, if necessary.
Article 16 (Prohibition of disadvantageous treatment)
The Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall not give an individual who reported (or blew whistle), without any improper purpose, about unlawful or unethical acts any disadvantageous treatment by reason of such individual’s having made the report (or blown whistle).
Article 17 (Ethical rules for officers and employees, etc. in charge of financial matters)
1. In addition to Articles 2 to 16 above, all officers and employees, etc. in charge of financial matters shall adhere to the following:
(1) Promote uncorrupt and ethical acts, including fair and ethical handling of actual or clear conflict of interests in relations between individuals and professional persons.
(2) Conduct perfect, fair, accurate, timely and easy-to-understand disclosure of reports and documents of the Company and the West Group companies to be filed with or submitted to regulatory authorities or other public announcements.
(3) Comply with all applicable accounting principles, laws and regulations.
(4) Promptly report (blow the whistle) to the appropriate department in charge, etc. indicated by the Company or the West Group companies, in the event that a violation of this Article is discovered.
(5) Secure compliance with this Article.
2. Officers and employees, etc. in charge of financial matters shall not, directly or indirectly, conduct fraudulent acts, threats, manipulation or misleading acts toward audit corporations that engage in audits of financial statements of the West Group companies, for the purpose of causing misunderstanding regarding important matters of said financial statements.
3. “Officers and employees, etc. in charge of financial matters” means the Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Finance and Accounting Officer and persons in charge of finance and accounting of the Company, and Presidents, Finance and Accounting Officers and persons in charge of finance and accounting of the West Group companies, and all the other employees who engage in financial affairs, accounting, tax affairs, funds, etc.
Article 18 (Revision or abolition of the West Group Code of Ethics)
The Company shall disclose any revision or abolition of the Code in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. Accordingly, the Officers and Employees, etc. of the West Group shall, when they recognize a situation that necessitates the revision or abolition of the Code, promptly contact officers in charge at their West Group company, in order to ensure that the Company can respond to the situation in a timely manner.
Established on March 1, 2007
Enforced on March 1, 2007
Revised on March 1, 2009
Revised on October 8, 2014
The West Group operates a whistleblowing system for the purpose of enhancing compliance-oriented management in accordance with the provisions of the Rules on Whistleblowing System. Under the system, a whistleblower may report violations of internal rules at workplaces, laws and regulations and corporate ethics to his/her company.
Reporting destinations have been established in and outside (attorney’s office) the company, and anonymous reporting is also made available. Regarding the content of such report received, fact-finding investigations are promptly conducted in order to grasp and correct issues in an early stage.
Moreover, the Rules on Whistleblowing System stipulates the responsibilities of persons concerned, the prohibition of retaliatory actions, the protection of information about whistleblowers, the prohibition of disadvantageous treatment of whistleblowers, among other matters.
Number of cases of whistleblowing
Fiscal year ended August 31, 2021: 2
Fiscal year ended August 31, 2020: 1
Fiscal year ended August 31, 2019: 0
Basic Policy concerning Antisocial Forces
The West Group declares the following basic policy to prevent damages caused by groups or individuals, so-called “Anti-Social Forces (“ASF”),” that pursue economic benefit by making use of violence, force and fraudulent means.
The West Group will work as one to respond to ASF in an organized manner, not just having persons or divisions in charge handle issues.
The West Group will work closely with external agencies such as police office, the National Centers for Removal of Criminal Organizations and attorneys in order to eliminate ASF.
The West Group will resolutely deal with ASF, including avoiding any business partnership with ASF, and will never accept undue demands from ASF.
The West Group will take both civil and criminal legal action to respond to these demands.
The West Group will never negotiate any under-the-table deals or provide funds to ASF to conceal the facts even if those demands relate to corporate scandals or employees’ wrongful acts.