Updated on August 29, 2019

Learning and Career

Learning and Development

Sony has defined the global behaviors it wants to see among employees: “Inspire and Be Inspired,” “Stay on Point,” and “Break Through Barriers.” Sony is strengthening its systematic training to give employees the skills they need in various formats including group training and e-learning. Given the important role that management plays in the growth of the company and its employees, the Sony Group in Japan conducts programs to equip management with practical people management skills so that they can maximize the potential of organizations. Sony is also strengthening its overall management using leadership development and coaching strategies in the electronics business (North America, South America, Europe, and Asia regions) and in the entertainment business encompassing music and film. In addition to mandatory training, Sony supports employee-driven development by offering seminars, courses at outside institutions, and a growing range of online courses to fit the needs of employees. Sony Corporation of America piloted LinkedIn Learning, which allows employees to utilize online courses covering a wide range of topics. Sony Music Entertainment operates the My Learning portal as a global learning management system with diverse and personalized learning content.

Participation in Companywide Training in Fiscal 2018 (Sony Group in Japan)
Targeted Mandatory Elective
Number of programs 11 54 274 22 361
Number of times offered 73 355 469 44 941
Participants 305 50,102 13,284 7,393 71,084
Cumulative total
training time (Hours)
12,455 105,195 62,846 19,626 200,122

In fiscal 2018, human resource development expenditure per employee at Sony Corporation was about 270,000 yen. Other efforts yielding good results are training program reviews and insourcing instructors from among employees, which both help to improve the efficiency and quality of each training program.

Career Development

Sony has always encouraged its employees to take on new challenges, fostering this mindset both to further the growth of its employees and its growth as a company. Back in 1966, Sony became first in the Japanese industry to launch an internal job posting program, which has now been in place for 50 years. The program provides an avenue for employees to explore career opportunities while serving to optimize the assignment of personnel and strengthen key parts of Sony’s business. To date, more than 7,000 employees have moved to new positions via the program, which has become essential to Sony’s personnel strategy of developing employees who are eager to take on new challenges. Sony also expanded its Global Job Posting program for employees around the world in fiscal 2011.

In fiscal 2015, Sony introduced two new programs that greatly expand on its existing internal recruitment program. Sony adopted a free agent program that gives talented employees the ability to declare their availability to Sony Group companies, which provides them with greater opportunities to branch out and pursue job opportunities in new fields. In the same year, Sony adopted Career Plus, a program that enables employees to remain in their current positions while also being involved in other jobs and projects posted by the company by holding concurrent or secondary positions. The program enables personnel to broadly leverage their expertise and knowledge while also building up their networks within Sony.

Every November is Career Month at Sony, and various events and programs are held to foster employee growth, including seminars on careers and professional development and career counseling opportunities. In addition, employees can meet directly with their supervisors to discuss development plans regarding their careers. The results are fed back to management and applied to efforts to reinforce Sony's programs for fostering employees, thereby facilitating carefully tailored support for career building.

Moreover, seeking to support employees' growth through work experience, in fiscal 2016, the New Performance Management Program used at Sony Corporation and its group companies in the electronics business was revised. The program fosters year-round communication between personnel and their superiors, enabling employees to set individual goals and track their progress while incorporating feedback on everyday conduct to better reflect individual observations and foster growth.

Sony is pursuing its purpose of “Fill the world with emotion, through the power of creativity and technology” by encouraging its employees to take on new challenges and supporting their career development by giving them professional experience within the Sony Group.

PORT— An Ideal Venue to Develop New Talent

In November 2018, Sony opened PORT at the Sony City headquarters building, as a social meeting space to develop the talent who will pioneer a new future for Sony. In order for Sony to sustainably create value and continue to grow into the future, Sony recognizes it must leverage and ensure the continued evolution of the diversity of its businesses and workforce, which has been a strength of Sony corporate culture since the beginning. PORT is a place where ambitious employees who hold diverse values — people from various specialized fields and backgrounds — can organically interact across business and geographic boundaries. The concept is for Sony Group employees to gather, connect, and create synergies, in order to grow as individuals and foster human resources who can navigate Sony into the future. PORT embodies this concept by serving as a venue for training, interviews, events, and seminars related to skills and career development, as well as providing a venue for employees to engage in spontaneous discussions, brainstorming, and workshops to stimulate shared learning.

PORT at Sony City headquarters building
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