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Employee Stories: Takumi

Last Updated: 2013.04.09
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Quality Steadily Improving in China

As 1 of 35 takumi experts currently working around the world, I am responsible for the quality of the innerwear garments we produce. Like other companies that follow a SPA (Specialty store retailer of Private label Apparel) business model, UNIQLO works with specialized inspection companies and public inspection agencies that conduct quality checks on product samples. UNIQLO also supplements those checks by sending its staff to factories on a weekly basis. UNIQLO may be the only apparel manufacturer that conducts its own checks on products at partner factories. I have been working on improving and stabilizing the quality of products made at factories in China since I joined UNIQLO, and I believe that we are generating positive results. From the beginning, the company's policy has been to ensure that all products manufactured at its partner factories pass third-party audits and inspections before shipping. The daily improvement efforts of the factories and expertise of UNIQLO managers are raising the abilities of factories to self-monitor their operations to the same level as the audit and inspection agencies. About half of the sock and innerwear manufacturers we work with no longer require third party inspections. As UNIQLO increases its production volumes, the next issue is to maintain consistent quality for products manufactured at factories in China and other countries. The different conditions, equipment, experience and skill levels in each country makes it particularly challenging, but the experience and knowledge I have gained in China is helping me to approach and overcome any challenge we encounter.

Takahiro Shiraishi

Takahiro Shiraishi
Sewing Technology Takumi Team
Production Development and Merchandising
Production Division
Fast Retailing (Shanghai) Enterprise
Management Consulting Co., Ltd.

Reducing Environmental Impact while Upholding Quality

Improving production efficiency is absolutely critical to reducing the environmental impact of the material manufacturing processes. Dyeing factories must ensure the coloring is uniform and without flaws. The dyeing process is comprised of heating, color selection, methods for applying dyeing auxiliaries, and other steps that can be easily measured and replicated. However, there are many aspects that cannot be quantified and require a considerable amount of experience to produce flawless color consistency. Installing the latest equipment, such as machines that use substantially less water, can conserve a significant amount of resources but ensuring color quality also necessitates precise control over water volume and careful refinement of the methods of use. The specialized skills and knowledge of Fast Retailing takumi experts are vital assets. Sharing this mastery in chemicals, machinery, and equipment with partner factories is essential to reduce the environmental impact of manufacturing processes.

Hiroshi Taka

Hiroshi Taka
Takumi Expert
Material Technology Expertise
Production Development and Merchandising
Production Division
Fast Retailing (Shanghai) Enterprise
Management Consulting Co., Ltd.

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