Relationship with Customers

Paying sincere attention to customer needs and making improvements continuously day by day, we support manufacturing activities of customers and contribute to the realization of a sustainable society by providing the latest semiconductor manufacturing equipment and precision measuring instruments and related support services.

Commitment to Quality Control

Basic Views on Quality

Customers of Tokyo Seimitsu are manufacturing companies, and the values we offer are "productivity of customers" and "accuracy and reliability of products manufactured by customers." In other words, we take it seriously that we "provide customers with a means to create value."
Our responsibility is to maintain a stable supply of high-quality products and services in order to protect and enhance customers' social status and profit. Keeping this in mind, we are committed to "maintenance and improvement of product quality," "advanced global support system," and "customers' satisfaction and confidence in products and services."

Quality Control System That We Keep Improving and Enhancing

In 1994, we systematized numerous quality assurance activities we had been doing, in order to attain ISO 9001 certification for both Hachioji Plant and Tsuchiura Plant at the same time. For 21 years since then, we have been devoted to eliminating quality risks and have systematized improvement activities under a rigorous quality control system.
Our precision measuring instruments are used in a vast range of fields including automobiles, machine tools, and electric machines. In August 2016, we acquired the certification of JIS Q 9100: Quality Management System-Requirements for Aviation, Space and Defense Organizations (certification scope: shape measurement of outsourced parts). This allows us to measure
workpieces in the fields of aviation, space, and defense and make measurements outsourced by customers, making us able to accommodate a wider range of precision measurement needs.

Quality Status Briefings

The quality of a new product is improved by conducting design reviews in the design stage, while actions for expected new risks are taken as needed based on the risk assessment after the product is complete. If a problem occurs despite these efforts, we identify its cause, take corrective and preventive actions, and evaluate the appropriateness of the corrective and preventive actions. At the same time, taking into consideration the possibility that other products may have similar risks, we re-execute risk assessments on those products. Also, to make sure that these actions continue to be implemented properly, we conduct a QA patrol on all processes on a regular basis.
Results of these activities are reported every month to the QC meeting, attended by the director in charge of quality, where the appropriateness of the activities is evaluated. This system accelerates the process of making decisions to systematically implement cross-company measures, such as promoting the application to other machines and the relocation of resources.

Problem Prevention and Cause Identification Approach

We recommend design FMEA*1 using a four-point scale. We appoint technical guides to promote its use and hold in-house seminars and workshops in the Development, Design, and Quality Assurance Divisions to ensure that this technique helps in quality control. Also, as an approach to identifying the true cause of a problem, we adopt "root cause analysis"*2. We use this method while deepening our understanding of it as a common thinking tool.

*1Design FMEA (Failure Mode and Effects Analysis): Failure mode and effects analysis for design. This technique predicts the modes of failure that may occur to system components and identifies design problems by analyzing and evaluating possible causes and effects in advance, thus preventing problems through measures that are taken beforehand.

*2Root cause analysis: Regarding a problem and its countermeasure, one presents the cause of that problem and then the cause of that cause. With
this analysis method, the effectiveness of the countermeasure for a problem is evaluated by repeating this process.

Small-group Activities

We continuously conduct improvement activities in small groups to pursue high-quality and reasonable means of production. Promoting multi-skill development results in employees working alone for a longer time and communicating less with other members of the workplace, which brings a disadvantage that employees engaged in the same work share little information with one another. Small-group activities let employees communicate directly with one another on a continuous basis, thus allowing the knowledge and abilities of individual
employees to be shared throughout the workplace. Also, employees of Hachioji Plant and Tsuchiura Plant visit one another's plants to share the improvement processes and results. By sharing viewpoints, perspectives, techniques, etc.,
employees of the two plants work in closer collaboration to drive improvements.

Upgrading of Change Management

Based on the understanding that a problem in the process is most likely to occur when a change is made to the person, processing machine, material, component, or method, we have sought to prevent problems by carefully managing these changes and taking preventive measures based on risk assessments. We have exercised this type of change management in the past. Since the revised 2015 version of ISO 9001 clearly states requirements for change management, however, we are now creating rules and making adaptations in order to upgrade our change standard to 4M change management*. This upgrade of change management is expected to bring some benefits, such as faster identification of a problem cause and faster implementation of corrective action.
We intend to take this opportunity to ask suppliers to switch to universal material change management, as well as to promote change management through the cooperation of the entire value chain. We plan to start the implementation of ISO 9001:2015 in fiscal 2017.

*4M change management: 4M stands for Man, Machine, Material, and Method. To manage changes to these is referred to as 4M change management.

Commitment to Customer Satisfaction

Improvement Activity Based on Questionnaire Surveys

We regularly conduct customer satisfaction questionnaire surveys to get feedback from our customers. Collected feedback is then reflected in our products as well as in our sales and service activities in order to further raise customer satisfaction. Customers are asked to give their ratings on product performance, quality, support, sales, cost, etc., and their ratings
are summarized by product. For items which received low ratings from customers, the relevant divisions set concrete improvement goals and take actions for improvement through the PDCA cycle. We intend to step up this activity to respond quickly to customer feedback and changes in their needs.

Examples of Improvements Based on Questionnaire Surveys

  • Establishment of a division specializing in the creation of manuals
    Since there was significant demand for "user-friendly, easy-to-understand manuals," we set up a manual improvement project and formulated improvement measures such as changing the basic policy for the provision of manuals. We then established a division specializing in the creation of manuals, staffed by experienced technical writers. Our effort is underway to make our manuals "user-friendly and easy-tounderstand."
  • Promotion of the centralized management of parts stock information
    The surveys found that many customers called for
    "quicker delivery of service parts." To meet this need, we built a system in fiscal 2012 that made it possible to view information online about the stock of the Hachioji Parts Center and the parts in consignment stock in each country. This has allowed us to view the stock status of each country on a global basis and ship parts urgently from one country to another.
    We also have adopted an MRP (Material Requirements
    Planning) system, which automates the adjustment and
    management of the supply of parts, reinforcin

Relationship with Dealers

Dealers are our important assets. They grasp customer needs and link the Tokyo Seimitsu Group to customers. The "Group of ACCRETECH," a group of Tokyo Seimitsu dealers, has held meetings regularly, including plenary meetings, meetings of personnel in charge of actual work, and area meetings. Through these meetings, we have had close bilateral exchanges with
one another, with Tokyo Seimitsu providing information on new products and market trends and dealers updating us on the trends of customer needs. We intend to implement CSR jointly with dealers by informing dealers of the Tokyo Seimitsu Group's CSR policy, values, and the progress of activities and explore ways to increase opportunities to gain customers' understanding.

2016 Plenary Meeting of the Group of ACCRETECH

Advanced Global Support System

For customer support, we seek to gain the "No. 1 position in customer satisfaction" and are committed to delivering necessary human and physical resources to places where they are needed when they are needed, in order to ensure that customers can use our products in good condition for a long period of time. We have support centers at 31 locations in the world and 25 in Japan with a total of about 270 customer support engineers. In addition, there are parts centers at 10 locations worldwide.

Training for Local Engineers Overseas

We strive to increase customer satisfaction globally by accepting human resources from our group's overseas subsidiaries and subcontractors and developing their abilities and improving their skills through training.

  • Semiconductor Manufacturing Equipment Business:
    We have accepted trainees from our overseas subsidiaries since 2013. These trainees stay in Japan for a year in principle and work together with our engineers in charge of development to improve their application ability and share the culture of Tokyo Seimitsu. Working with foreign trainees helps our Japanese employees better understand the cultures of the trainees' countries and improve their communication and language skills.
    Trainees attend a Japanese language school, and we ask them to deepen their understanding of Japan's cultural traditions and customs and serve as a liaison bridge between their countries and Tokyo Seimitsu in the future.
  • Precision Measuring Instrument Business:
    In 2011, we began to accept trainees from our group's overseas subsidiaries and subcontractors. During the training period of several weeks to three months, trainees are educated at the Metrology Center on the delivery and maintenance work and applications, depending on their years of experience. Engineers who meet specified criteria are given certificates of completion.
Training for Overseas Service Engineers

Multilingual Support for the Trouble Shooting Manual, Procedure Documents, etc.

In many countries where we have customers of semiconductor manufacturing equipment, English is spoken as an official language. By contrast, measuring instruments are used by a wide range of customers in various environments and situations. To enable daily inspections and troubleshooting to be performed
by customers themselves, we are preparing a troubleshooting manual and procedure documents in languages of the countries concerned.
[Languages used for procedure documents]
Japanese, English, Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Spanish, Portuguese

Domestic Leading-edge Bases for Accelerating Value Creation by Customers

Based on the concept of "What cannot be measured cannot be produced," we consider that the precision measuring instrument business, one of the two pillars of our business, is not merely meant to provide measuring instruments. We see it as the "basics of manufacturing" for delivering precision and reliability to society.
No activity of "manufacturing" is possible without the process of "measurement." Also, measuring accurately is indispensable for our customers to provide reliable products to society. To convey this idea to society on a broader basis, we are committed to the following efforts.

Metrology Center

In November 2008, we established the "Metrology Center" in the site of the Tsuchiura precision measuring instrument plant, replacing the former showroom. The aim is to earn the position of the world's top brand in the field of metrology.
Customers who visit this center can have hands-on experienceswith various kinds of measuring instruments and techniques that help solve their problems. The center also offers many other functions, such as proposing possible solutions and giving opportunities to operate our products for training purposes. We would like to see this center become a place that satisfies and inspires visitors to such an extent that they want to come back again, thus helping customers create value.

 Functions of the Metrology Center
Solution proposal Through explanations of measuring instruments and methods, training for measuring instrument operation, etc., we propose various solutions to address customers' needs and problems.
Also, in cases where customers are unable to conduct measurements
internally because they have no measuring instruments or their measuring instruments do not have the necessary measurement
function, we offer "consignment measurement" service whereby we conduct measurements for these customers.
Customer support We provide support to customers who have purchased measuring instruments from us, by offering guidance at the training school
that is held regularly, giving advice on a daily basis via call centers, etc.
Also, by training service engineers at overseas offices, we ensure that excellent support service can be provided even after the delivery of the measuring instrument, with the goal of developing lifelong relationships with customers.
Opportunities to learn
about our products
and measurement
For customers who have our measuring instruments, trading companies and dealers that deal with our measuring instruments, universities, high schools, local enterprises, etc., we hold events such as plant tours, product workshops, and metrology seminars in order to deepen their understanding of metrology and help them understand our products through various product exhibits.

Activities of Application Teams

Tokyo Seimitsu has application teams, composed of metrology experts trained at the Metrology Center, in various locations in Japan and the world to meet the "manufacturing" needs of each individual area.
・ Advice on measurement
・ Dispatch of measurement instructors at the request of a laboratory or industrial technology center in the area
・ In-house measurement workshop at the request of a company
・ Open private trade show in the area
・ Sponsorship of the National Skills Competition

 Actual Activities of Application Teams (Fiscal 2015)
Lectures and
measurement guidance
at public organizations
Conducted at a total of 9 locations including universities and technology
centers (17 days in total).
Metrology seminars A total of 13 seminars were conducted for major auto makers, machine
manufacturers, and dealers (17 days in total).
Private trade show A total of 11 private trade shows, many of them hosted by dealers, were conducted (14 days in total).