Nintendo discusses how it has dealt with COVID-19 for employees, consumers, and supply chain
Posted on June 29, 2021 by Brian(@NE_Brian) in General Nintendo, News
Almost every major business has been massively impacted by the coronavirus pandemic since last year, including Nintendo. In its 2021 CSR Report, president Shuntaro Furukawa touched on how the company responded to the situation. Different moves were made for its employees, consumers, and supply chain.
We have always prioritized the health and safety of our consumers, business partners and employees.
To respond to the spread of COVID-19, we established the Disaster Response Committee, where the President serves as chairperson. We implemented a variety of initiatives, such as distributing masks to all employees and establishing Work From Home policies. In addition, considering risk of infection, we shifted all consumer events to an online format in principle, prioritizing the health and safety of consumers while attempting to minimize situations where they would miss out on eagerly anticipated opportunities. During the mandatory stay-at-home period, we feel that Ring Fit Adventure for Nintendo Switch along with Jump Rope Challenge, a game Nintendo developers created while working
from home, were able to offer consumers many opportunities to exercise and stay active. And with our supply chain initiatives, we adjusted our processes to perform supply chain audits remotely. We are continuing to transform our organization by adapting flexibly to various changes in the business environment due to the spread of COVID-19.
Jump Rope Challenge for Nintendo Switch
To help encourage exercise during the mandatory stay-at-home period, we released the Nintendo Switch software title, Jump Rope Challenge, which allows players to jump rope indoors using the Joy-Con controllers. We are providing this software free of charge so that we can assist our many consumers in staying active. The idea to develop and provide this software came from our own developers, who wanted to consider how they could contribute while in a work-from-home environment. Since the release of Jump Rope Challenge, people all over the world have jumped rope approximately 5.3 billion times (as of June 2021).
Initiatives for Our Production Partners
In FY 2020, we engaged in communication with our production partners, taking into account the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to confirming the status of responsible mineral procurement remotely, we prepared to implement remote third-party audits in place of our regular on-site inspections and conducted these in the spring of 2021. While focusing on reducing the risk of transmission, we established and verified rigorous item checks, and made sure to increase opportunities for communication as we worked to understand on-site conditions.
Initiatives for Employees in Each Region
Nintendo Co., Ltd. (Japan)
– Shortened or waived core working hours for employees who come into the office to allow for more flexible commuting times
– Distributed masks to employees and installed partitions in offices and cafeterias to prevent droplet transmission
– Provided all employees with a stipend to assist with the purchase of equipment needed to work from home, etc.
– Provided special leave for employees at times when their children’s schools were closed
Nintendo of America
– Worked with medical insurance companies and the on-site medical facility to provide virtual medical care
– Issued announcements to employees about the virtual counseling that we provide, as well as online resources for behavioral health
– Provided employee support programs such as child care support and online individual exercise training
– Enacted extensive new safety protocols to ensure onsite employees were able to work in the office safely
– Provided flexible working hours and additional vacation time to support employees caring for children and other family members
– Supplemented the costs of supporting remote work and working from home
– For employees living in regions where performing work was not possible because of lockdowns, we provided salary and benefits equivalent to their normal compensation
Nintendo of Europe
– During the lockdown period, we established virtual coffee breaks to encourage communication between employees
– Managers held virtual lunches during their break times to discuss topics related to working from home and the pandemic
– Held virtual orientations for new employees
– Provided welcome-back gifts that included masks upon returning to the office
– Established a mental health hotline to talk with mental health experts, which is available to all employees
– Implemented a COVID Safe Plan (temperature checks for employees before they come to the office, installing disinfectant stations, preventing transmission in the cafeteria, etc.)
– Provided information and periodic advice about how to make masks, mental health, work-life balance, fitness and other topics
– Sent a gift basket to all employees on “R U OK? Day” (a day that promotes awareness of mental health)
– Provided welcome-back packs, that included supplies such as masks, to employees