Product safety and security through comprehensive quality control
NITORI Group always has the customer’s perspective and recognizes its social responsibility to contribute to safe and secure lives of customers, not to mention offering products with stable quality at affordable prices. We work to improve quality and ensure safety at all times, so that customers can use our products safely and with peace of mind.
Offering safety and security and achieving sustainable growth with suppliers through correct manufacturing and responsible procurement
Pursuing correct manufacturing and responsible procurement
NITORI Group considers affordability, quality, and coordination as the most important factors in manufacturing. Quality means that measures are taken to ensure appropriate functions and product safety, and that products are made through the correct manufacturing process (in terms of sincerity, respect for human rights, compliance, occupational safety, environmental protection, etc.). We aim for sustainable growth throughout the entire supply chain by explaining to and sharing with not only our own factories but also suppliers, who are our partners in achieving the mission, the importance of being environmentally conscious and fulfilling social responsibilities, as well as our ideas to create a culture of product safety.
Initiatives to ensure comprehensive quality control and
improve work environment in the Group’s own factories
NITORI Group is a manufacturer that has its own factories at one domestic and three overseas locations, where total of over 10,000 employees work. Each factory commits to quality control in the manufacturing process. For example, the factory in Vietnam (NITORI FURNITURE) conducts voluntary audits mainly on quality control, led by an independent local department that specializes in quality control. Employees also participate in “Product Safety and After* Sales Service Reduction Meetings,” where employees gather customer’s voice to make improvements and reforms, and Nitori World Circle (NWC) activities (NITORI Group’s unique small group activities where employees identify issues from everyday tasks and make improvements and reforms). To improve quality and productivity, they carry out tasks every day with high motivation. In addition, departments specialized in factory control monitor occupational safety and attendance, based on NITORI Group’s belief that creation and improvement of work environment leads to stable quality. The purpose of their strict checks includes ensuring that there are no risks that may lead to accidents and that employees are taking sufficient break times. Furthermore, free meals are served in the factory cafeterias, and the filling, tasty meals are well received by our employees. Our own factories create employment in local areas and contribute to the development of local communities. The factories’ initiatives to ensure comprehensive quality control and improvement of work environment are and taken advantage of, as precious know-how, in building partnerships with overseas suppliers.
*Troubles raised by customers
Examples of NITORI Group’s initiatives (linked to SDGs)
～ Responsible Procurement ～
Comprehensive quality control through the United
Collaboration System with overseas suppliers
NITORI Group currently does business with approximately 770 overseas suppliers. We not only ensure compliance in relation to suppliers, who are our partners in achieving the mission, but also share with them ideas and management methods to build a culture of product safety. In the following processes, strict standards have been set and PDCA cycles implemented. We establish true partnerships with suppliers and aim for sustainable growth together.
Building a culture of product safety
NITORI Group considers it important to build fair, honest, highly transparent, and open relationships with suppliers and grow together.
We take thorough measures to prevent “silent change,” where changes made by the suppliers in material or parts are not notified to the clients, and make sure that each supplier factory files an application when there is a change to the 4Ms (Man, Machine, Material, Method). We also work to raise suppliers’ motivation by sharing product safety information and giving awards in the Overseas Management Policy Briefings and the Annual Awards Ceremony. In addition, product safety and quality meetings are held twice a year. We aim to establish true partnerships with suppliers by signing the NITORI Group’s Business Partner Charter and the Fair Trade Declaration, not to mention agreeing on terms and conditions concerning products and quality. Other matters we emphasize in our communication with suppliers include the importance of environmental considerations, respect for human rights, and compliance.
Improvement and reform proposals from suppliers
Every year, NITORI Group holds Nitori World Circle (NWC), which is based on small group activities and aims to identify issues from everyday tasks and make improvements and reforms. In fiscal 2020, a total of 415 teams participated from Japan and overseas, of which 91 teams were from overseas suppliers. The activity topics included quality improvement by involving the secondary supplier, improvement of production efficiency by leveling out process capability, and approaches to defective products that reduce waste rate. In many cases that were presented, suppliers led improvements and reforms.