We have derived our strengths by working to reinforce corporate governance and competitive manufacturing. Based on this approach, we have introduced brand management in order to change the mindset of Komatsu Group employees from that based on a supplier to that of a customer. This is further strengthening Komatsu Group's corporate muscle and facilitating human resource development.
We define competitive manufacturing as work not limited to people on the shop floor but as teamwork among all internal departments, such as R&D, production, sales and product support, as well as all value-chain partners, such as suppliers and distributors.
Gemba (Workplace) Capability
We define workplace capability as the capability of each and every employee to improve his/her work spontaneously and continually. We have nurtured this workplace capability through TQM (Total Quality Management) over the years, thereby enhancing competitive manufacturing.
Solid Partnership with Suppliers and Distributors
We conduct business as we team up with our suppliers and distributors in charge of sales and service activities by sharing values and principles. We have “Midori-kai”, the group of our suppliers in Japan, and regard it as the center of reinforcing collaboration. Midori-kai suppliers are asked to get involved in the development stage of products in order to enhance our product competitiveness. They are also invited to participate in our human resource development programs. We have also organized “Midori-kai” outside of Japan.
In-house Development and Production of Key Components
We develop and produce key components, such as engines and hydraulic equipment, including the metal casting process, in Japan where we can capitalize on time-tested competitive manufacturing. In this way, we are well positioned to enhance our product competitiveness by reassessing all processes, including the design stage, when necessary. Further, we supply key components, which incorporate the world's top-level quality, cost and delivery advantages, to our assembly plants around the world.
Mother Plant System
We position assembly plants equipped with product development capability as Mother plants. When producing new products or making model changes, development and production divisions as well as suppliers team up to “build in” thorough quality, cost and delivery advantages. Mother plants are responsible for Safety, Legal compliance, Quality, Delivery and Cost of Child plants when producing the same models. In addition, Mother plants not only ensure the stable global supply of their products, but also work to transfer competitive manufacturing to Child plants.
Assembly Plants for Construction and Mining Equipment
Flexible Global Production
We have 22 assembly plants (Mother and Child plants together) worldwide. We assemble the equipment at the best possible plants, chosen especially by considering local market demand, foreign exchange rates and equalization of production load, and cross-sourced finished products around the world. Except for key components, parts with superior quality and low costs are supplied to assembly plants around the world from China and Southeast Asia.
Global Sales and Service Networks
Our network of 201 distributors in 151 countries covers 99% of the countries and regions with demand around the world. For mining equipment, Komatsu and its subsidiaries team up to engage in customer-tailored sales and service activities.
Global Sales and Service Networks (Distributors)
ICT Applications: KOMTRAX
Komatsu has been setting the pace for implementing ICT applications in the construction and mining equipment industry. The number of KOMTRAX (Komatsu Machine Tracking System)-installed construction equipment has exceeded 340,000 worldwide, and we are utilizing a massive amount of information gained from the KOMTRAX in marketing and service operations. Concerning the use of all ICT-based information, we share it with our customers and distributors. Together we make customers' jobsite operations “visible” and improve their operations, thereby building up a solid relationship with customers.
Human Resource Development around the World
We are converging efforts to develop human resources centering on 20 training centers and 27 service support centers worldwide. We are also promoting the localization of management by training top management of overseas subsidiaries. Today, seven overseas subsidiaries are managed by those of respective citizenships who have worked for Komatsu over the years.
Product Support Bases
Zero Inventory Project for Distributors
Under this project, we own distributors' finished products for them so that they can focus on sales and service. In this way we should become able to find out retail demand in a timely way around the world.