Respecting Human Rights

Respect for human rights is integral to our working principles. It is part of our definition of running a sustainable business and contributing to the realization of a sustainable world.

Since 2011, we have followed Shiseido Code of Conduct and Ethics (revised April 2022), which stipulate the mandatory behavior expected of every individual working for Shiseido. We have also established Shiseido Policy on Human Rights, and have been working closely with our business partners to define and update the principles and policies surrounding ethical business conduct. These are reflected in Shiseido Group Supplier Code of Conduct, which stipulates the standards that govern and direct our behavior on human rights, legal compliance, labor practices, intellectual property protection, confidentiality, environmental protection, and fair trade.

To ensure responsible procurement, we conduct regular assessments and third-party audits, and have in place a rigorous and objective risk identification and remediation process.

Human Rights Due Diligence

Based on the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), National Action Plans (NAPs) have been formulated in various countries, mainly in the EU, and many NAPs include a statement on human rights due diligence.

In 2020, we established a human rights due diligence process to promptly identify, prevent and mitigate potential human rights issues.

In addition to the visible human rights risks, potential negative impacts on human rights are regularly identified and risk mitigation measures are taken to prevent serious damage. Progress and findings are reported to the Sustainability Committee, a management meeting focused on the deliberation of sustainability―and human rights―related issues.

In any new business relationship, such as mergers and acquisitions, respect for human rights (compliance with personnel and labor issues, employee and customer safety, etc.) is part of the due diligence process for all investment decisions.

Human Rights Due Diligence Process

Human Rights Risk Assessment

In cooperation with external human rights experts, and by referencing international codes on human rights, standards on non-financial disclosures, and the Corporate Human Rights Benchmark (CHRB), we have developed a list of human rights issues to be considered. This list includes labor-related issues, such as forced labor and child labor, as well as a wide range of other human rights issues, such as freedom of association, the right to collective bargaining, and discrimination.

The human rights issues identified above were sorted by relevancy to each Shiseido stakeholder (employees, consumers, business partners, shareholders, and members of society). The severity and likelihood of both visible and potential human rights impacts were then assessed based on interviews with employees in Japan and overseas, and by investigating internal and external documents. In addition, we evaluated the risk of each human rights issue based on the status of Shiseido’s implementation of preventive and corrective measures.

After assessing our value chain, we identified a number of human rights risks: “discriminatory actions/expressions”, “violation of compliance/fair competition”, “personal/confidential information leakages”, “employees’ personal data and privacy”, “incomplete supplier management”, “occupational safety and health issues (work-related accidents)”, “breach of working hours, breaks, and rest periods (overtime-work)”, and “harassment and abuse”.

Measures for Mitigation and Correction of Human Rights Risks

The eight areas identified through the human rights risk assessment have been consolidated into six categories for each area of responsibility of the Executive Officer.

  • Violation of compliance/fair competition
  • Harassment and discrimination
  • Breach of working hours, breaks, and rest period (overtime-work)
  • Privacy invasion and personal/confidential information leakages
  • Occupational safety and health issues (work-related accidents)
  • Incomplete supplier management

We assigned executive officers to those categories of human rights to engage them in activities for stopping, preventing and mitigating negative impacts on human rights. Human rights issues of employees are managed by the Human Resources and Risk Management departments, and those of suppliers and contracted manufacturers are handled by the Supply Network Division.

In the training provided for managerial positions on harassment and ethics, regular training and education are conducted about Shiseido Code of Conduct and Ethics and related policies and rules according to positions and job types to deepen our employees’ understanding of the human rights and to work to reduce human rights risks. Training sessions for top-level employees including the Global Headquarters officers and department directors in Japan, those for division/department heads of domestic and overseas offices, those for employees in various divisions/departments, and those for new employees are held.

If improper acts or the like are revealed, we stop such acts immediately and implement corrective measures and reoccurrence prevention measures rapidly in cooperation with the relevant companies, offices, and divisions/departments. We also take disciplinary action against employees who have been involved in such acts in accordance with employment regulations and internal rules. If any cases of disadvantageous treatment, harassment, etc. toward whistleblowers or consulters are identified, we take appropriate relief/restoration measures immediately in cooperation with the relevant companies, offices, and divisions/departments, and take strict measures including any disciplinary punishment against the persons who have engaged in such disadvantageous treatment or harassment.
If the case may pose a risk to our business management, it is promptly reported to management from the divisions/departments. Any serious compliance-related concern is reported to management of the Global Risk Management & Compliance Committee and/or HQ/SJ Compliance Committee, and we work to eliminate the concern immediately and implement corrective measures and reoccurrence prevention measures rapidly in cooperation with the relevant companies, offices, and divisions/departments.

At the time when a supplier becomes aware of any violation of Shiseido Group Supplier Code of Conduct, it shall immediately inform the Shiseido Group thereof. If any violation is acknowledged, the supplier must formulate a plan to correct such violation and conduct suitable corrective measures, as well as reporting the status of such correction to the Shiseido Group on each occasion. An agreement entered into with the Shiseido Group may be cancelled depending on the contents of the violation.
Suppliers shall accept whistle-blowing and complaints from their employees, shall make sure to protect their employees from possible retaliation from the suppliers and persons against whom the relevant whistle-blowing was made, and shall take appropriate measures to rectify the status and conditions against which such complaints are made, while always taking the privacy of whistle-blowers into consideration.

Grievance Mechanism

We offer whistleblowing and consultation hotlines for the purpose of detecting and correcting violations against the laws and regulations, the Articles of Incorporation, and rules within the Shiseido Group. The whistleblowing and consultation hotlines are operated according to internal rules that specify confidentiality, prohibition of disadvantageous treatment or reprisals against whistleblowers/consulters, elimination of conflicts of interest, and the process for handling whistleblowing and consultations, etc. These internal rules are disclosed via the internal intranet so that employees can view them at any time.
Globally, we have established whistleblowing and consultation hotlines at each regional affiliate for employees to voice their concerns about or report on words and/or actions which are or may be unethical or in violation of laws in the relevant countries/regions, the internal rules, and the Shiseido Code of Conduct and Ethics. At Company headquarters, the Shiseido Global Hotline has been established to receive reports directly from any employee in the Shiseido Group.
The hotline system in Japan consists of the Sodan Room (an in-house Shiseido Hotline) and an external Shiseido Hotline that deals with general workplace issues and whistleblowing, as well as the Compliance Committee Hotline dedicated to certain cases of whistleblowing, and the Shiseido Group Whistleblowing Desk to Audit and Supervisory Board Members for reports from Japan and overseas relating to directors, executive officers, and hotline staff members. All these hotlines accept anonymous whistleblowing and consultations.
Shiseido also has a Business Partner Hotline for suppliers and business partners in Japan to voice any concerns on violations of human rights and compliance by Shiseido Group companies and employees.

Human Resources

At Shiseido, we always put PEOPLE FIRST. Ever since our founding, people have been at the heart of global value creation. People are the key to fulfilling our corporate mission, and diverse, professional talent remains an essential value driver for our business.

Developing Diverse Professionals

At Shiseido, to ensure we can provide value that is suited to each and every one of our consumers, we are aiming to create an organization where employees can independently acquire the expertise and skills to drive innovation and continue to achieve growth. At Shiseido Group in Japan, in 2015 we introduced a job-based personnel system for management (approximately 1,700 employees) and in 2021 for non-management (approximately 3,800 employees). The system clarifies the responsibilities and expertise required for each role and aims to develop employees through performance management. Moreover, several times a year we continue to host workshops for management on how to use performance management to develop their subordinates. Further, to promote employees’ self-directed career development, in 2022 we hosted the Career Mentoring Program (266 participants) through which employees can engage in career-related discussions with management personnel other than their own superiors. In addition, we extended the “LinkedIn Learning”platform across our global sites (5,739 participants) to encourage self-directed learning.

Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace

Taking positives from employees’ differences and creating new value is essential to sustained corporate growth. In particular, gender equality is key to ensuring that employees work with real energy. The percentage of women in leadership positions is 58.1% across Shiseido Group, while in Japan it is 37.6%. We aim to increase this to 50% by 2030 to fairly represent gender equality. We also host a female leader development program, NEXT LEADERSHIP SESSIONS for WOMEN, and in 2022, 63 employees took part.

Employees with disabilities are also an important part of an inclusive workplace. In 2019, we launched a project to increase job options for employees with disabilities, and today we have employees with visual impairments working in sales. Elsewhere, in stores, we have a number of Shiseido Personal Beauty Partners with disabilities working as beauty professionals, helping to bring out the beauty of our consumers. In 2021, we joined The Valuable 500, an international movement to support the social advancement of people with disabilities.
Moreover, to create a flat organizational structure where different mindsets are respected and embraced, we continue to host a reverse mentoring program in which young employees mentor executive officers and department managers and exchange opinions with them (892 participants between 2017 and 2022).

 The Valuable 500
The Valuable 500
Employee with visual impairments working in sales

Health and Safety of Employees

It is our mission to realize a sustainable society through beauty. To accomplish this, we must create a work environment where all employees can work safely.
To support the health and safety of our employees, we established the “Shiseido Health Declaration” and the “Shiseido Vision Zero Declaration (Safety Declaration)”. Chief People Officer is responsible for managing employee health and safety. He is also responsible for the creation and maintenance of healthy, safe workplaces by setting KPIs and leading occupational accident countermeasure committees.

Shiseido Health Declaration

“Our mission is BEAUTY INNOVATIONS FOR A BETTER WORLD. To that end, we promote initiatives for employees and their families to live beautifully and healthily based on our perception that beauty and health are sources of vitality”.

Shiseido Vision Zero Declaration (Safety Declaration)

"Our vision is to achieve zero leave accidents by creating an environment for employees to work healthily and safely."

Developing Leaders Through Art and Heritage

In 2022, we conducted various global leadership training programs at our headquarters and regions for executive officers, regional CEOs, and other leadership personnel (162 participants). We also announced the opening of the Shiseido Future University. Launching in autumn 2023 in Ginza, where the company was founded, the university will act as a hub of wisdom to build the future of Shiseido, and through the university we will roll out an array of global personnel development programs.
Shiseido Future University (tentative name) will promote talent development through its unique curriculum which combines the state-of-the-art, global-standard business education with the understanding of Shiseido’s heritage of pursuing a sense of beauty and richness of spirit since our founding. In doing so, the university will strive to develop leaders with excellent strategies, leadership capabilities, and sensitivity.

Shiseido Future University in GInza
Global leadership training