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HOME NRI JOURNAL To Create a Society Where Everyone Can Be Independent

NRI JOURNAL

Innovation magazine that generates hints for the future

クラウドの潮流――進化するクラウド・サービスと変化する企業の意識

To Create a Society Where Everyone Can Be Independent

Surveys and research on employment of people with disabilities and work style improvement using IT

NRI Mirai, Ltd.

Sep. 01, 2017

Our world today demands a society in which everyone can play an active role regardless of gender, age, nationality or disability. NRI Mirai was established in 2015 with the mission of promoting employment of people with disabilities. As a member of NRI Group, the company has rolled out unique activities to advocate societies and workplaces where people with disabilities can work actively with a sense of pride.

Research, surveys and communications on employment of people with disabilities

To find out what kind of issues Japanese companies face regarding employment of people with disabilities, and what efforts are being made to find solutions to those issues, NRI Mirai (a special-purpose subsidiary*1 of Nomura Research Institute) and Nomura Research Institute (NRI) together conduct the "Fact-Finding Survey on the Employment of Persons with Disabilities from the Management Perspective" on listed companies and their special-purpose subsidiaries. The survey has been conducted once a year since 2015.
They found that although both parent companies and special-purpose subsidiaries recognize the importance of employing people with disabilities, there is a difference in the merits they anticipate from it. To cultivate an understanding in both types of companies, as well as in society in general, we must call attention to the merits of employing people with disabilities through visualization. We also found problems in finding and training people with disabilities, as well as finding and training instructors for them.
In addition, NRI Mirai conducted field surveys in Northern Europe in 2016 and Germany in 2017. The company considers it one of its missions to communicate to the world its research findings and to propose alternatives for the future, through reports, seminars and more.

*1 Special-purpose subsidiary: A subsidiary that meets certain standards regarding special considerations for the employment of people with disabilities. Under this government certification, people with disabilities hired by the special-purpose subsidiary are considered hired by the parent company.

Understanding the value and meaning of work and bringing out workers' capabilities

NRI Mirai also makes practical efforts to help people with disabilities achieve independence. Koji Adachi, President and Representative Director of NRI Mirai, commented on issues regarding training people with disabilities.
"People with disabilities have wonderful capabilities in areas unrelated to their disabilities. It is part of our mission to bring out those capabilities and link them to work that offers value to society. We do this through a variety of endeavors and collaborations."

NRI Mirai employees that offer massage services
NRI Mirai employees that offer massage services

One example is the eleven massage therapists with visual impairments (health keepers) hired by NRI Mirai. In 2016 the health keepers took initiative on a project to review their own work and improve customer satisfaction (employees who come to get massages). It was the first time for these massage therapists to take part in this type of project. They examined their work in detail, designed a questionnaire to inspect customer satisfaction, conducted the survey, analyzed the results, and carried the project into actual improvements.
Mr. Adachi says, "I think this is one instant of drawing out the full potential of employees. Except for their visual impairments, they are the same as non-disabled employees. I plan to have them take part in more projects that are regularly conducted in typical companies."

Here is another example. Some employees with intellectual disabilities are good at doing repetitive tasks for long hours. They are often in charge of proofreading inputted texts and digitizing large quantities of documents. Mr. Adachi says, "Instead of merely giving them their task, we let them know that other people need the work to be done, and have them understand the meaning of that task within the overall process."
The accumulation of such efforts can help people with disabilities understand the significance of their work and find the independence to work in regular companies and workplaces alongside non-disabled people. This is the kind of society that NRI Mirai aims for.

Using AI to further bring out workers' capabilities

Koji Adachi,
President, NRI Mirai, Ltd.
Koji Adachi,
President, NRI Mirai, Ltd.

Mr. Adachi says, "NRI Mirai's next project to help realize this kind of ideal society can be considered characteristic as a member of NRI Group."
"We believe IT (information technology) offers great potential for work style improvements. A prime example of this is Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI can bring about a paradigm shift in the way we work, and I expect it will create a society in which people with and without disabilities work alongside each other." Some experts say the era of AI will benefit people with a single outstanding capability, more so than people who can do a variety of things.
Mr. Adachi believes that, if this is true, AI is well-suited to people with disabilities. That is, AI could act as an instructor for people with disabilities and help bring out their full potential. NRI Mirai has already started looking into practical application of this, with an AI team consisting of voluntary members from NRI Group.

They are looking for ways to raise the standard of work with the implementation of AI, using the work of NRI Mirai employees in text data proofreading and data aggregation.

NRI has combined its functions as a think-tank (surveys and research) and those as an IT solutions company (building and operating information systems) to offer solutions to society's diverse problems. Inheriting this corporate DNA, NRI Mirai intends to create a future society in which people with disabilities can live their full potential, by being a think tank for promoting the employment of people with disabilities and utilizing IT to promote their independence and the demonstration of their capabilities.
Considering the aging population, Japan must aim for a society in which people with disabilities can be independent and play an active role. NRI Mirai will continue to contribute to the creation of this future society through diverse endeavors.

Please see below for results of the "Fact-Finding Survey on the Employment of Persons with Disabilities from the Management Perspective," information on employee diversity, and more information on NRI Mirai. (In Japanese only)

- Reports

Improving the Performance of People with Disabilities and Visualizing the Merits of Employing Them
http://www.nri.com/jp/knowledge/report/lst/2016/cc/1226

Improving the Performance of People with Disabilities and Visualizing the Merits of Employing Them
- Part 1: Report on Fact-Finding Survey on the Employment of Persons with Disabilities from the Management Perspective -

Improving the Performance of People with Disabilities and Visualizing the Merits of Employing Them
- Part 2: Case Studies -

Improving the Performance of People with Disabilities and Visualizing the Merits of Employing Them
- Part 3: Northern Europe Survey Report -

Results of Fact-Finding Survey on the Employment of Persons with Disabilities from the Management Perspective

Results of Fact-Finding Survey on the Employment of Persons with Disabilities from the Management Perspective and Running Special-Purpose Subsidiaries

Comments from seminar attendants and suggestions from seminar lectures

Improving

- Related information

Richness in individuality and employee diversity in the era of AI

- NRI Mirai website

http://www.nri-mirai.com/

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Contact

Nomura Research Institute, Ltd.
Corporate Communications Department
E-mail: kouhou@nri.co.jp

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