Toyota Compensation and Benefits

Toyota Motor Corporation has never faced an issue with their employee compensation and benefits packages. Part of their philosophy has been people are their greatest asset and they treat them as such by paying them a good salary and empowering their employees. How can they attract top talent? Well even the top executives at Toyota do not make a seven figure salary. Wages are determined with a fair market value in mind, but it is the “me” versus “we” attitude that drives Toyota's success.

Describe the formal pay structure within the organization. Toyota has long marched to a different drummer when it comes to wages and compensation. Now with the economy turning upside down, Toyota has been forced into cost cutting measures to align hourly wages more closely with state manufacturing wages of where the plant is located. They have always followed the policy of pay your employees well and they will perform better and be more productive, but also promote a policy of equal payment for each job.

Describe any benchmarking activities undertaken by the organization. Include information as to whether the organization offers a competitive compensation structure. Describe incentives offered by the organization. You can take a page by the introduction of the Toyota Way to employees in the Camry Plant of Kentucky (Kentent, 2009). Initially high wages allowed Toyota to hire the cream of the crop. Daily, monthly and yearly goals were outlined for each department and offered a bonus system if goals were achieved.

The bonus was distributed to each member regardless if a profit was made and not by individual performance thus enhancing the team concept. The company used also non-monetary awards, as letters of "thank you" from the president, recognition on Toyota publications, and daily recognition from their peers and supervisors. One of the highlights of the Camry plant was to build a gym, cafeteria and a nursery for the children of the employees. The upper management also does not have special parking places or any other perks to enhance the feeling of equality with their fellow employees.

Describe any profit sharing, stock ownership programs that are available.

While owning part of the company is not an option for most Toyota employees, profit sharing is with the gains consistently being passed on to workers throughout the years (Miller & Novak, 2008) often making Toyota employees the highest paid workers in the automaker industry.

Describe how benefits are communicated to employees.

Benefits are communicated to employees on their day of hire with the Toyota Handbook which explains company policy wages, benefits, health care packages, retirement and pension plans and the company mission. Also included is the (Toyota, 2003) Toyota mindset of Kaizen, continuous improvement and employee respect.

Describe any problems associated with compensation policies of the organization.

Some of the problems associated with compensation result in the low wages paid to employees versus other automakers. Initially Toyota offers high salaries in an effort to attract the best talent, but there it ends. Even top executives in Toyota rarely receive more than a seven figure salary. After all the training and development Toyota puts into its employees, some can be wooed away from other companies with the promise of more money.

Describe the environmental factors that have influenced compensation and benefits of the organization. Toyota believes in “green” and that is passed on to its employees by making them socially aware of establishing a low carbon society. There is no waste of any kind at Toyota and sometimes that means eliminating positions and tasks that may potentially harm the environment. But that does not mean that the employee is discarded along the way. They are just retrained into another job.

Describe any current issues faced by the organization as they relate to compensation and benefits.

The current recession has made Toyota consider the “unthinkable” for them and that is laying people off. In previous articles this has never been an issue for Toyota as people are their most valuable asset. They have managed to avoid it thus far by reducing man hours, moving people to different operations and rethinking their benefit packages. They are in favor of tailoring an individual benefit plan instead of offering the comprehensive group plans they now offer.

References:

  • Kentent. (2009). Toyota production system. Retrieved from http://kentent.hubpages.com/hub/Toyota-Production System
  • Miller, J., & Novak, V. (2008, December 11). Auto worker salaries. Retrieved from http://www.factcheck.org/2008/12/auto-worker-salaries/
  • Toyota. (2003). Toyota environmental and social report. Retrieved from http://www.toyota.co.jp/en/environmental_rep/03/jyugyoin03.html
  • Toyota. (n.d.). Toyota motor corporation. Retrieved from http://www.toyota global.com/sustainability/environmental_responsibility/