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Promoting the employment and advancement of diverse talent

The value of diversity

As indicated in Mizuho's HR Vision, we believe that the personal development of individual employees contributes to the stable and sustainable growth of Mizuho as a whole, and we encourage employees who differ in terms of gender, country of origin, cultural background, and values to understand, respect, and inspire each other. As such, we have worked for many years to promote diversity both in Japan and abroad.

We launched our first diversity initiatives the year after the formation of Mizuho Financial Group in 2002. In this early period starting in 2003, our primary focus was on women's empowerment. We expanded the support systems for female employees who qualified for maternity/childcare leave and those who were caring for young children. We also promoted the proactive hiring of more women and established a dedicated office for these efforts at each of our core group companies.

From 2006 we entered a growth period in terms of promoting diversity. We actively encouraged employees to take advantage of the support systems available for working parents, striving to create a work environment where it was the norm for women to return to work after having a child. During this period, our focus shifted from promoting the advancement of women in particular to promoting diversity in a broader sense.

From 2012 our initiatives entered a more developed period. We expanded the work arrangements available in order to create more flexible options in line with an increase in working parents and the diversification of employees' career aspirations. Also, we enhanced the support available for women re–entering the workforce after maternity/childcare leave with the aim of assisting working parents to continue advancing their career. Our efforts in these areas were recognized in fiscal 2015 with Platinum Kurumin certification, Nadeshiko Brand designation, and inclusion in the New Diversity Management Selection 100, among other awards and recognition.

In 2016, despite having made headway in the acceptance of diversity at Mizuho, based in part on feedback from our outside directors, we concluded that we need more diverse representation (including women and non–Japanese nationals) in positions of leadership with decision–making authority within our corporate management and business. We understood that our current level of diversity would make it difficult to sustainably increase our corporate value given the rapidly changing business environment and the fiercely competitive nature of the finance industry.

With this in mind, a key area to address was our HR management practices, which were built around the assumption of a Japanese, male, management track employee as the norm. We therefore decided to implement fundamental reforms in HR management and make diversity and inclusion a key strategy under our medium–term business plan, with the aim of ensuring the active participation and professional growth of all employees. We also set a number of ambitious numerical targets leading up to 2020, such as having more than 30% of management positions filled by women by the end of July 2019, accelerating group–wide efforts.

Moving forward, in order to improve our ability to respond to various environmental changes, pursue proactive reform well into the future, and achieve sustainable growth, we will continue to work together as a group to achieve greater diversity and inclusion.

We aim to ensure that diverse perspectives and ideas are reflected in strategic planning and decision making at the business and management levels. Harnessing our diversity to develop innovative financial products as well as continually refine the services we offer and the business processes which support our organization is essential for continually building our corporate value in the rapidly changing business environment and the fiercely competitive finance industry.


Promoting women's advancement

More than 40% of Mizuho's employees are women. With the aim of creating an environment where female employees are highly engaged and can utilize their capabilities to the fullest, Mizuho has established its basic policy on promoting women's advancement in the organization centered on the "Four Rs".

Mizuho is also a signatory to Japan's Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare's campaign to promote Positive Action, and our Group CEO's declaration appears on the campaign's website.

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Basic Policy on Promoting Women's Advancement: The Four Rs
Basic Policy Objectives
Recruit Actively recruit and acquire female talent.
  • Actively recruit necessary personnel.
  • Achieve our target of 30% of new graduate hires for the management track to be women.
Raise Support the activities of women in diverse fields, and their promotion to managerial positions.
  • Ensure a fair and unbiased evaluation process.
  • Set targets for the percentage of women in management–level positions, and proactively promote women to such positions.
  • Provide support for skill and knowledge acquisition through expanded training programs.
Retain Maintain and increase employee engagement by creating work environments that allow employees to freely exercise their capabilities.
  • Minimize difficulties associated with pregnancy, childbirth and childcare by strengthening work–life balance support systems (e.g. offering longer childcare leave than legally mandated, along with options for shortened working hours).
  • Flexibly implement personnel management policies to support employees balancing work and family responsibilities (e.g. arranging for spouse transfers in connection with the reassignment of employees to distant posts).
  • Establish and operate childcare facilities within business sites.
Relate Actively promote internal and external dialogue to encourage a change in mindset for the organization as a whole
  • Promote proactive dialogue inside and outside the group.
  • Promote a change in mindset for the organization as a whole.

For further information on balancing work and family responsibilities, please see Promoting Work–Life Balance.

Women's representation within Mizuho

As a result of Mizuho's expansion of support systems for employees balancing work and childcare, the number of female employees leaving the company due to marriage or childbirth has significantly decreased. Also, our many career education programs for female employees have contributed to an increase in the number of women in management positions. These efforts have received external recognition in a number of ways. In 2014, Mizuho received an award from Japan's Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare for "Corporate Career Support". In 2015, Mizuho placed 17th in the overall ranking (and 1st in the banking category) for Nikkei Woman magazine's "100 Best Companies where Women Play an Active Part 2015". In 2016 and 2018, Mizuho was awarded "Nadeshiko Brand" designation by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, in recognition of our policies, goals, and tangible progress that reflect the promotion of women's participation in the workplace.

ESG Evaluation and Reputation

Challenges going forward

The fact is that women are still underrepresented in leadership in every area of our business, and that therefore we are not yet fully taking advantage of the unique perspectives and ideas that a more diverse workforce can generate. This is why in FY2016 we set new diversity & inclusion numerical targets to help us better incorporate more diverse thinking into our day–to–day operations and high–level strategic planning and decision making, by accelerating the promotion of women to management positions at Mizuho Financial Group, Mizuho Bank, Mizuho Trust & Banking, and Mizuho Securities.

Additionally, we have set a target for women to represent approximately 30% of new graduates hired for the management track, and as such we are actively working to acquire more female talent.

Further information

Career education and support for female employees

Strategic Development Program for Female Staff

We recognize the need to provide finely tailored support for female employees throughout major life events and stages, to ensure that they can maintain a healthy work–life balance without sacrificing the advancement of their career. With this need in mind, from FY2016 we have started to restructure our strategic development program specifically for female employees, which provides support at each career stage to ensure employees are able to successfully navigate new challenges and maintain a high level of motivation and pride in their work.

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Strategic Development Program for Female Staff
Early career
  • Career Design Seminars (available to men and women)
    We offer seminars for employees in their fourth and sixth years after joining Mizuho aimed at helping each employee to think carefully about their career and personal development and to plan out a career path that will enable them to maximize their strengths.
  • Career Advancement Seminars, "Expert" Qualification Seminars, Leadership Seminars, Management Skills Seminars
    We offer relevant medium– to long–term training support for women who want to further their careers by moving into management–level positions or into more specialized fields.
  • Training for Newly Appointed Managers (M's Circuit) (available to men and women)
    For employees at this crucial point in their career, we offer training to develop leadership skills.
  • Career Development Support Training, Career Advisory Interviews
    We offer training specifically for female employees to assist them in dealing with challenges disproportionately faced by women as they build their careers (such as balancing life events with their work), with follow–up career advisory interviews after the training to ensure its effectiveness.
Organizational leadership
  • Coaching by external specialists
    In order to better incorporate the diverse ideas and values of female employees in organizational leadership positions into key strategy planning, organizational decision–making, and daily business operations, we are providing opportunities to meet external specialists who coach employees to transform their mindsets and demonstrate advanced leadership skills.

Overview of Career Support Programs for Female Staff

Consultations with female career advisors

Mizuho extended the career advisory system from FY2016, incorporating the opportunity for consultations with female career advisors from outside the company. In addition to this being a chance for Mizuho employees to benefit from the wealth of experience external advisors have gained at other companies, female employees can especially benefit from receiving advice from someone who understands the particular issues women face in building their careers.

Career development support programs for employees over the age of 40

In addition to strategic development programs for female staff, and as part of our career development support programs for employees over 40 years old, we also offer career promotion seminars to female employees over the age of 45, and age–specific career planning seminars targeted at those aged 55 and over, and those aged 60–plus. These programs support female employees in taking charge of their working style and career path over the medium to long term.

For more details on the career advisory interviews system and group–wide training systems, please see Training programs that facilitate a diverse range of career paths.

A network for female employees

The Mizuho Women's Initiatives Network (M–WIN), founded with the aim of enhancing connectivity between women working at Mizuho, also plays an important role in encouraging the growth and involvement of all women at Mizuho, by providing a space to share diverse ideas and perspectives. For more details, see Employee connectivity.

Connecting with external women's networks

Mizuho regularly sends female employees to seminars and discussion sessions held by other companies in order to develop female leaders and support them in building external networks as well. We also hold occasional networking sessions and discussion meetings with companies in other industries.

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    Multi–industry discussion meeting

Action plan based on the act on promotion of women's participation and advancement in the workplace

We have established an Action Plan and are working towards the goals therein with the aim of creating an environment where all employees can enjoy diverse and flexible work arrangements and where women are active at every level of the organization.

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Mizuho Financial Group
Mizuho Bank
Mizuho Trust & Banking
Action Plan(PDF/106KB)
Mizuho Securities Action Plan(PDF/48KB)
Mizuho Information & Research Institute Action Plan(PDF/115KB)

Promoting the advancement of employees with disabilities

Mizuho employs people with a variety of disabilities, in various divisions of the group. In addition, Mizuho Business Challenged Co., Ltd, a special subsidiary1, employs personnel with disabilities who handle mail collection and delivery at the Mizuho Bank Head Office Building, as well as data entry and document handling for Mizuho group companies, contributing to increased efficiency in business operations for the group as a whole.

Mizuho works hard to create a workplace environment where people with disabilities will be able to work comfortably and enjoy long and fulfilling careers. We aim to provide opportunities that take into consideration the specific circumstances of each individual. Mizuho has implemented the following initiatives and is promoting the employment and advancement of employees with disabilities:

  • Flexible forms of employment, such as working from home
  • Work support via a job coaching system
  • Consultation service for employees with disabilities

Further information

ESG data(Percentage of employees who are individuals with disabilities)

Creating a welcoming work environment where differences are celebrated

Mizuho Business Challenged

At Mizuho Business Challenged, employees with various different disabilities work side by side, putting their skills to use and dividing tasks based on each person's capabilities and expertise. Teams, including leaders and sub–leaders, are composed entirely of employees with disabilities. Employees are encouraged to work with a high degree of responsibility and independence. Employees are responsible for their own schedule management, adherence to deadlines, and quality of work. In cases where an employee has difficulty performing a task independently, job coaches devise new methods of work or create manuals that are easy to understand visually. Employees cooperate to take on a broad range of duties and continue their personal development. We plan to expand Mizuho Business Challenged in order to provide even more opportunities for employees with disabilities to contribute to the Mizuho group.


Broadening Horizons Network


Sign language club

The Broadening Horizons Network focuses on the theme of equal opportunities for people with disabilities. Members examine issues facing people with disabilities and work to improve connectivity between employees. The network is open to all group company employees, regardless of whether or not they have a disability, and currently consists of 100 members around Japan.

The network's activities, which include a sign language club, aim to provide participants with inspiration and ideas about different ways of working and career paths, and Mizuho hopes that the network will increase employee engagement and lead to the creation of a work environment where employees can participate more fully, with a sense of fulfillment and pride in their work.

Career opportunities and advancement for employees of all nationalities

Mizuho is continually expanding its global network, and in conjunction with this expansion the proportion of consolidated revenue generated from business outside Japan is increasing every year. The number of both Mizuho staff hired locally in locations outside Japan and non–Japanese employees working in Japan is increasing year after year.

Offices outside Japan hire local staff independently, using their insight into local business characteristics and customs in order to build a professional team with the right expertise for each location. These offices are also responsible for employee development and carry out regular training in compliance and related subjects.

Further information

ESG data(Numbers of staff hired locally outside Japan)

Global Talent Acquisition and Development Department – Focusing on Diverse Talent Management

In order to better meet the wide–ranging and complex needs of Mizuho's customers and continue to provide them with innovative and sophisticated solutions in the global market, successful management of Mizuho's global network and leveraging of local knowledge and skills are key.

Mizuho believes that giving all staff, irrespective of where they were hired or where they currently work, the opportunity to develop their skills on the global stage enhances the organization's overall performance and ability to provide customers with innovative solutions.

It was within this context that the Global Career Management Division (GCMD)1 was established in April 2014. In April 2016, the HR group was reorganized by function, creating the Global Talent Acquisition and Development Department (GTAD), which promotes the hiring, development, and advancement of Mizuho's diverse talent all over the world.

GTAD's mandate includes promoting the optimal allocation of talent on a global basis and the development of global leaders. This is achieved by the expansion of global career development opportunities available to staff hired locally outside Japan (the Global Mobility Program2 and the Global Opportunity Program3) as well as enhancing the cross–cultural communication skills of Japanese employees and increasing their opportunities to work outside Japan.

  • 1: Currently the Global Talent Acquisition and Development Department.
  • 2: Global Mobility Program
    Started in 2007 to provide global career development opportunities to staff hired locally outside Japan and to give the organization greater flexibility to meet global business needs. The program involves not only personnel transfers into Japanese offices from offices in other countries, but also transfers between offices in different countries other than Japan.
  • 3: Global Opportunity Program
    Started in 2013 to provide junior staff hired locally outside Japan with the opportunity to work at Head Office in Tokyo for a two–year period. After completing their assignments and returning to their home offices, they are expected to further their careers and make greater contributions to the organization by leveraging the skills, knowledge and networks they developed during their time in Japan.

Initiatives for supporting LGBT* employees

In ourDiversity & Inclusion Statement, Mizuho clearly articulates initiatives aimed towards building environments in which LGBT employees are accepted and valued as individuals, and are provided with equal opportunities in the workplace. In Japan, where same sex marriage is not yet legally recognized, we are also working to make our product offerings more accessible to couples in same sex partnerships. For example, joint housing loans offered by Mizuho Bank and trust products offered by Mizuho Trust & Banking.

  • *Throughout this website, the term "LGBT" is used to refer not only to lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender individuals but also to individuals who identify as belonging to related sexual and gender minority communities.
  • In recognition of our efforts towards LGBT inclusion, five Mizuho group companies* have received the gold rating on the PRIDE Index, which was created by Work With Pride, a Japanese organization that supports the establishment and promotion of LGBT–related diversity management practices.

  • *Mizuho Financial Group, Mizuho Bank, Mizuho Trust & Banking, Mizuho Securities, Mizuho Information & Research Institute.
    • work with Pride


In our Diversity & Inclusion Statement, Mizuho clearly articulates initiatives toward the advancement of LGBT employees.

Extension of spousal benefits to same–sex partners

Under Mizuho's HR and employee benefits systems, same–sex partners are treated as equivalent to spouses to the extent possible given legal and tax limitations in Japan, where same–sex marriage is not yet legal. Employees with same–sex partners are able to make use of benefits such as special leave for a wedding ceremony, for childcare or to care for a sick or aging member of their partner's family, and are also eligible for a monetary gift from the company in honor of special occasions such as a wedding.

LGBT advisory service

Mizuho offers both internal and external advisory services for employees. These services accept inquiries and provide advice for LGBT employees as well as their coworkers.

Changing employee mindsets

Mizuho is working to raise awareness and change employee mindsets, by providing internal training aimed at promoting understanding of the LGBT community.

LGBT groups and networks

Mizuho has joined LGBT Finance, a network of financial institutions that work together to promote LGBT–friendly work environments in the financial industry.

Participation in Tokyo Rainbow Pride


In May 2018 Mizuho participated in and cosponsored Tokyo Rainbow Pride as a member of LGBT Finance. This event aims to promote LGBT awareness and contribute to the creation of a positive environment within society where individuals of any sexual orientation or gender identity can live authentically and with pride and dignity. Mizuho employees marched in the parade through the Shibuya area, waving custom Mizuho rainbow flags.

Additionally, as part of Pride Week, we held a special event at the Mizuho Bank Shibuya Branch, a life planning seminar specifically for LGBT individuals, with the aim of providing same–sex couples with information and advice to support their life in Japan. Throughout Pride Week, Mizuho's ATMs in the Shibuya area (including those outside of branches) displayed digital signage and a video expressing Mizuho's commitment to being an LGBT ally.

Promoting the active participation of older members of the workforce

At Mizuho, we believe that career development is not only for younger employees in the early stages of their career. We also offer different career development support programs tailored to employees in their 40s, 50s, and 60s in order to ensure that they have the opportunity to think about their future goals and develop life and career plans in advance. This benefits both employees and the organization as it enables us to fully utilize the extensive knowledge, experience, and capabilities of the older members of our workforce. We also have a system in place to offer continued employment opportunities to employees who have reached the retirement age but would like to continue working. These opportunities enable post–retirement workers to put their skills to use in a variety of fields and are not limited to the area they worked in prior to retirement.

Career development support program

When employees (of all contract types and employment categories) turn 45, they participate in a special Career Promotion Seminar where they have the opportunity to reflect on their career objectives and work arrangements going forward. Also, for employees age 46 and older, Mizuho offers Life and Career Planning Seminars where participants develop career plans based on their individual life plans and their perceived professional strengths.

Continued employment

Mizuho offers opportunities for stable, continued employment to employees who have reached retirement age but would like to continue working. Our system for continued employment not only fulfills the requirements of Japan's Act on Stabilization of Employment of Elderly Persons but also enables us to better fulfill the diverse needs of both workers and our organization in a mutually beneficial manner.

Further information

ESG data(Usage of the continued employment system)