Through M&A and other strategic consolidations, the Ricoh Group now employs approximately 110,000 people. The accelerating pace of changes in global management and business environments requires a human resource management response with a global perspective. Therefore, within the Ricoh Group, each and every employee around the world is given the opportunity to thrive, and personnel policies are in place on a global scale to enable employees with the requisite skills and motivation to achieve individual success.
In October 2011, we finalized the Ricoh Group Human Resources Management Policy. Priorities are: 1) wide dissemination of The RICOH Way; 2) training for top global talent; 3) global mobility; 4) identification of top talent throughout the world; and 5) a global system of personnel management. In line with this policy, we aim first to put the right people in the right place, wherever in the world that may be, as quickly as possible so that these people, particularly top talent, can fully demonstrate their skills. Toward this end, are working to establish a global evaluation standard and build a human resources database. Also, to facilitate smooth personnel rotation across national and regional borders, we are currently formulating global assignment procedures. Going forward, the headquarters and personnel departments at each Group company will coordinate efforts more closely to clarify delegation of authority and institute a global personnel structure, which will reinforce human resource management.
Helping to transform Ricoh into a truly global entity
I find that people at Ricoh in Japan are always willing to try new things, although one of the big challenges is for me to explain how changes fit into existing processes. I’ve noticed the younger engineers particularly embrace change and become incredibly agile. My job as a manager is to help engineers fulfill their potential in driving cutting-edge technology, and I find that rewarding.
I’ve experienced a lot of differences in communication style between Silicon Valley, where people feel like they must express their opinions or disagree, and in Japan, which seems much more polite.
I consider it part of my mission to help Ricoh transform itself from being a multinational into a truly global company. If all our employees worldwide had unfettered access to each other and could tap into all of Ricoh’s international assets it would become even more powerful and innovative because it could fully utilize all of Ricoh’s collective brains.
Focusing priorities to add value for the regions
Before coming to Japan, I managed technology marketing at Ricoh Americas Corporation, leveraging our technology to optimize customer solutions. Ricoh then wanted me to support marketing for operations in the Asia Pacific, Europe, and the Americas. A lot of my work in Japan is about conveying regional needs, accelerating the time to market, and helping top management better understand regional requirements.
In Japan, I’ve been able to break through barriers and get quicker decisions, which are win-wins for everyone. I’ve found that headquarters has long been keen to support the regions but hasn’t always been able to focus its efforts. Here, I can help everyone to focus priorities. And by understanding regional needs we’re changing the way we launch products. My motto is, “Always add value every day.” I emphasize to my team that we in Japan must do our level best to add value for the regions.
What I find great about Ricoh is its people, the communications, global climate, and our technologies. It’s great to work for a leader, knowing that the competition has some way to go to catch up.
Leveraging headquarters’ willingness to understand customers and improve
I’m excited about my role at Ricoh headquarters because it gives me a great opportunity to work with our global teams to redefine how we structure our global accounts business and to use the voice of the customer to help shape our strategic direction.
We are seeing a shift towards Global HR Management which I believe will have a very positive impact across the Group both in terms of employee satisfaction and in the execution of our business strategy. Over time, I believe we need to find the right balance between opportunities for functional and geographic rotation while also building the depth of expertise that is required in a services-led company. Looking at my team also, it is great to see a diverse and passionate group of employees.
What’s impressed me most about working here is the commitment to having a clear understanding as to the voice of our customer as well as how we respond to this and improve ourselves every day. Since I moved to Japan last year, I have also been struck by the efforts to help me settle both at work and with my family—the level of hospitality has been humbling.