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Activities to enhance manufacturing
Noritake is a manufacturer that was born from the passionate desires of the
founders to "make porcelain with exquisite craftmanship and impeccable
whiteness." Based on this spirit, the Noritake Manufacturing Committee was
established in 2011 to improve the quality of our products and services.
In 2011, we began basic development activities under the "Manufacturing 3-1 (M3-1) Activities", started by the manufacturing departments. To ensure stable production, we have implemented a system that is the foundation for safety, organized & in order, and standardization. In addition, we have integrated "quality activities" for the engineering division and we are evolving them into activities that promote manufacturing and technology together. Since 2016, as basic enhancement activities, we have expanded our activities to develop management standards and systems that control the five major missions of our production sites: Safety, Quality, Production, Cost, and Human Resources.
We have expanded our manufacturing activities for engineering, development, sales and management as "S3-1 activities," and are currently promoting activities based on the two pillars of "M3-1 activities" and "S3-1 activities."
M3-1 activity (manufacturing and technology)
Throughout our M3-1 activities, we stress the concept of "Customer First, Safety First and Quality First" in our manufacturing and engineering departments, and promote activities based on the recognition that achieving these three "Firsts" is important for continuing to contribute to society through our business. In order to further strengthen our manufacturing framework, we advance these efforts based on a two-pillars approach that includes basic enhancement activities and quality activities.
Basic enhancement activities
In our basic enhancement activities, in order to more reliably control Quality (Q), Cost (C), and Delivery (D), we have created a system that operates according to the management standards and roles by hierarchy for the five major missions of our production sites. This system is shown as a template. The Noritake Group's 13 plants hold "Genchi Genbutsu (real location, real thing) meetings" where the activities for the five missions are confirmed at the plant site. At these meetings, participants have discussions and promote good practices across departments.
We promote "Good Quality activities" and "Production preparation activities" in order to establish systems that can promptly and reliably provide the "Good Quality" that customers demand.
Good quality activities:
We share information about how we deal with complaints and also useful information about measures against defects in manufacturing processes. We strive to make corrections and improvements while conducting "Obeya" activities. In these "Obeya" activities, top administrators, such as plant managers, gather with the people involved, from manufacturing, production technology, quality assurance, product development and so on. Cross-departmental meetings are held to promptly carry out practical activities through factor analysis and discussions of countermeasures.
Production preparation activities:
Common Noritake Group standards are defined for items to be performed and items to be confirmed in each step from product planning to mass production. We have been carrying out audits (Quality Audits) since FY2016 to confirm the understanding of purpose, operational status, and effectiveness related to these standards. We are continuously working to respond to the issues that have emerged through the audits and reduce complaints.
S3-1 activity (sales/technology/management)
Noritake manufacturing enhancement activities are not limited to the
plants at which we manufacture our products. To delight our customers with
our products, both the tasks performed by departments that directly involve in
our business operations and the management and the work done by the
management and development divisions are all linked in one way or another.
These manufacturing-enhancement activities carried out by our non-factory member are called "S3-1" activities. S represents the S of service, and 3-1 represents the three "Firsts": Customer First, Quality First and Trust First, which all our staff must always observe consciously as they carry out their work duties. S3-1 activities are performed while keeping aware of these "Firsts", and are designed to elevate the quality of work.
In our S3-1 activities, all employees review their work from the customer's perspective in order to aim for the ideal. Two basic policies are "I am responsible" and "My work I pass on to is my customer". Small groups are formed to carry out the activities, and by achieving clear results that improve work precision, quality and efficiency (customer satisfaction, work process improvement, paid leave utilization, etc.) we aim to create a comfortable workplace while achieving the trusts by customers at the same time.
Engagement in these activities is also intended to improve employee awareness and boost problem-solving capabilities, leading to human resource development and building stronger organizational structures.