Human Resource Development

Our Basic Stance

In order for us to continue our business and grow in the 21st century as a global corporation, all of our employees must efficiently, effectively, and completely achieve specific targets in line with our corporate policies and Company-wide actions.
It is the “people” of a company who use their minds and act to achieve specific goals, so the development and invigoration of human resources is the most critical factor for the growth and advancement of our company.
In Kawasaki Group Policy on Human Resource Management too, we declare our commitment to continuously fostering human resources with the mindsets to resolutely challenge change and to follow through on their own initiative. This commitment entails identifying by appropriate means the talents and ambitions of employees and enabling them to realize their ideal careers through work and skill development. Based on the above, Kawasaki conceptualizes the development of human resources as follows:

  • We carry out human resource development to grow our corporate performance, and improve our employees’ capabilities as well as their purpose in life.
  • OJT (on-the-job training), self-development, and rotation are the foundations of human resource education.
  • Off-JT is provided to support these activities in ways where the results of Off-JT can be practically applied in the workplace.
  • The line manager is responsible for human resource education.
  • Human resource education is to be conducted on an individual basis in a planned manner and on an ongoing basis.
  • Opportunities for developing one’s abilities are provided to all employees from the time they are newly employed up to the time of their retirement.

Desirable Employee Attributes

Kawasaki aims to nurture individuals equipped with sophisticated expertise and wide-ranging experience. To this end, we will systematically nurture future leaders, including executive candidates, while strengthening project risk management and developing global human resources. Specifically, we will provide consistent training and strengthening at all levels with the aim of realizing the following six desirable human resource attributes set out in our Kawasaki Group Mission Statement:

  • Human resources capable of being active globally
  • Human resources capable of solving the challenges of society and customers
  • Human resources capable of supporting change and innovation
  • Human resources capable of upgrading their expertise
  • Human resources capable of displaying overall competence
  • Human resources with a constant profit-oriented perspective


We have in place the Human Capital Development Department within the Human Resources Division. Also, common Group-wide education and training, such as level-specific development for junior employees, top management or other levels and training to foster globally capable human resources, is planned and executed by the Head Office Human Resources Division. In addition, the internal companies each plan and execute education and training related to the particular abilities and skills required in their respective areas of business.

Human Resource Development Programs

Reinforce the Management and Business Execution Capabilities of Employees (Administrative and technical training)

During their first three years of employment, employees in administrative and technical positions receive a combination of structured OJT based on a mentoring program and a range of training content designed to help young employees develop their capabilities as quickly as possible.
Furthermore, programs designed for training managerial candidates are provided, including the Kawasaki management seminars and Kawasaki executive coaching programs; the senior management course and middle management course, aimed at enhancing the capabilities of mid-level managers and section heads; and the 360 degree evaluation designed to build individuals’ awareness of their strengths and areas requiring improvement.
We emphasize the importance of communication to foster skills development in the execution of routine duties. In particular, individuals have quarterly one-on-one meetings with their supervisors and share their goals within their sections using a special sheet, titled the Challenge & Commitment Sheet, which includes the challenges they are taking on and their commitments.

Performance of Major Grade-specific Training Programs Held by Head Office (consolidated domestic; exceptions apply)


Unit 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
New employee training Participants Persons 325 338 338 344 232
Total hours Hours 14,300 14,872 14,872 15,136 10,208
Training for new section managers Participants Persons 91 91 125 103 140
Total hours Hours 7,280 5,533 7,843 4,944 7,140
Training for new division managers Participants Persons 44 50 48 36 39
Total hours Hours 2,464 2,464 2,700 1,512 1,521
Kawasaki executive coaching program*1 Participants Persons 9 9 9 9 30
Total hours Hours 1,152 1,152 1,152 1,152 4,080
Kawasaki management seminars Participants Persons 51 23 - *2 121 103
Total hours Hours 204 81 - 242 206

*1 The participant target for the Kawasaki executive coaching program, which aims to expedite the training of executive candidates, was lowered from division manager equivalent to section manager equivalent in fiscal 2021, with the number taking the classes increasing from 9 to 30 persons.

*2 Cancelled in fiscal 2019 to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Training Structure for Administrative and Technical Personnel

Strengthening On-site Capabilities (Training for production specialists)

In the area of production specialist training, we are promoting the transmission and enhancement of front-line production skills through a variety of programs, including the Skills and Qualification Early Acquisition Incentive Program for younger employees and the Grand Master System, in which production specialists with a high level of special expertise are recognized as grand masters and work to systematically pass down their skills to younger employees. In fiscal 2022, two new grand masters have been recognized, bringing the current total of active grand masters to five.
In addition, we participate actively in outside skills competitions. At the Hyogo Monozukuri (production) Skill Competition held from October to November 2021, Kawasaki employees secured first, second, and third places in the lathe category of the senior workers’ skills division and won the Fighting Spirit Prize in the lathe category in the younger workers’ skills division. Furthermore, in the Skill Grand Prix held in February 2021, Kawasaki employees received the silver and bronze medals in the lathe category as well as the bronze medal in the machine assembly category.
To reinforce the leadership of production site supervisors, we provide senior foreman training and foreman training. For young employees, we provide basic training programs on KPS* and quality control in which they learn about Kawasaki’s production systems.

* KPS: The Kawasaki Production System, a proprietary production system developed by Kawasaki.

Training Structure for Production Specialists

Note: Only those programs, etc. targeted at all Group companies and hosted by Head Office are included

Other Initiatives to Strengthen On-site Capabilities

  • Technical Skill Contest
    In recent years, with Japan’s baby boomer generation retiring in great numbers, ensuring that their skills are passed down to the next generation has become a pressing issue, and Kawasaki is focusing efforts on education and developing the skills of young employees. Every year, young employees from production sites in and outside Japan gather at the Akashi Works for the Technical Skill Contest to compete against one another using skills they have honed at their work sites. Young technicians from Japan and several other countries take part, demonstrating their skills to the fullest as they compete with and learn from each other. In fiscal 2020 and 2021, the event was cancelled to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Going forward, however, we will continue such efforts to maintain and improve technical skills across the Group.
  • Creating Opportunities to Pass down Skills
    Aggressively promoting the transfer of technical skills to enhance production capabilities, the bedrock of our business activities, is essential. To this end, we opened Takumi Juku, a professional trade skills training center at the Harima Works, in 2012, and Manabiya, a manufacturing skills creation center at the Akashi Works, in 2014. Through synergies between existing skills training systems and the creation of opportunities to pass down technical skills, these centers are delivering results in terms of not only transferring skills, but also of acquiring new skills, quickly developing skills and instructors, and enabling employees to teach and improve one another’s capabilities.

Development of Global Human Resources

Since 2008, we have been implementing measures for global human resource development aimed at supporting business expansion worldwide. Specifically, we implement the global business talent seminars to instill a mental preparedness to work from a global perspective and learn skills related to overseas business and the global basic skills seminars to instill a systematic understanding of differences in diversifying values. Furthermore, we work to enhance global human resource development, for example, offering an overseas internship system and Asian business training program aimed at globalizing domestic human resources as well as training support for local engineering employees at overseas sites.
In fiscal 2018, we formulated the Kawasaki Bilingual Program, an English training program designed to assist self-motivated study. This represents yet another example of our efforts to develop an environment in which employees with career ambitions are supported by a diverse lineup of English training programs and empowered to pursue their goal of becoming global human resources.

Our Structure for Nurturing Global Human Resources

Performance of Major Global HR Training Programs Held by Head Office (consolidated domestic; exceptions apply)


Unit 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Global business talent seminars Participants Persons 39 33 16 - 15
Total hours Hours 2,964 1,584 872 - 765
Global basic skills seminars Participants Persons 61 20 38 - 23
Total hours Hours 488 160 304 - 172.5
English-language skills series*1 Participants Persons 30 15 17 19 12
Total hours Hours 648 324 368 161 242
English-language writing series*2 Participants Persons 32 39 37 - 23
Total hours Hours 512 624 956 - 345

Note: Language programs are also provided at each workplace.

*1 English-language skills series: Meeting (reading aloud and practical exercises), presentation, and negotiation training

*2 English-language writing series: Courses on technical writing (to fiscal 2019), business writing, and email writing from the elementary stage

Project Manager Training

In recent years, we have seen a rise in project-oriented businesses with contracts for entire systems, including peripheral facilities, as opposed to standalone products. Accordingly, we introduced new training programs in fiscal 2016 to secure project managers able to execute such projects. The entire Group is working to enhance its project management capabilities, to this end holding Project Manager Seminars to which we invite individuals from inside and outside the company with previous experience in large-scale projects as lecturers to impart the know-how required to lead projects to success, and the Project Management Course to acquire a systematic knowledge of project management.

Nurturing Management Successors (Kawasaki Executive Coaching Program)

We are nurturing human resources who can assume executive positions and contribute to the medium-to long-term enhancement of our enterprise value amid an increasingly harsh business environment. To this end, our pipeline of candidates encompasses an extensive scope of job ranks, ranging from assistant managers to executive officers, while our training programs are designed to address differing issues in light of their staff grades.
As a specific initiative, we hold the Kawasaki executive coaching program (spanning nine months per fiscal year) for executive candidates selected from section manager equivalents. In addition to instilling participants with corporate management expertise, the program facilitates a deepened understanding of the true nature of corporate management at Kawasaki Group. This is achieved through deliberations involving external lecturers and corporate managers from outside the Kawasaki Group, as well as numerous group discussions. Using these means we aim to nurture in management-level human resources the capacity to embody our corporate philosophy by equipping them with optimal perspectives on the Group as a whole, as well as global perspectives on corporate management, toward the resolution of managerial challenges.

Amounts Invested in Human Resource Development

Education and Training Expenses (Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kawasaki Railcar Manufacturing, and Kawasaki Motors)


Unit 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Education and training expenses per employee Yen/FTE* 33,000 35,000 34,000 27,000 27,000
Education and training hours per employee Hours/FTE* 33 38 41 32 32
Total education and training hours Hours - - - - 547,000

* FTE: Full-Time Equivalent

ROI from Human Resources (consolidated global)


Unit 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Sales (a) Millions of yen 1,574,242 1,594,743 1,641,335 1,488,486 1,500,879
Sales expenses (b) Millions of yen 1,518,317 1,530,720 1,579,272 1,493,792 1,455,074
Employee-related expenses (c)* Millions of yen 158,070 161,131 161,460 156,707 147,460
ROI from human resources (a-(b-c)) /c
1.35 1.40 1.38 - 1.31

* Salaries, bonuses, and welfare expenses


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