At GC excellence is not a destination; it is a continuous journey.
From its beginnings in Japan in 1921, GC has made the journey to excellence a hallmark of all its activities and to this day, every new associate is aware of the role that he or she plays in helping the company to achieve this.
By 2020 GC aims to be the worldʼs leading oral health company. GC products are sold in over 100 countries across the world, which include well-known brands that have been used and trusted by dentists for decades. GC believes that by raising standards of oral healthcare, the general wellbeing and quality of life of people will also improve.
It is therefore not surprising that quality management has become entrenched in GC business operations globally. What was known as GCQ or GC Quality Control was first introduced into the company in 1981 by its president, Mr Makoto Nakao. Practices and benchmarks were created across the company to implement this initiative and were regularly reviewed by Mr Nakao himself through detailed visits to each department. GC has since coined the term "GQM" or GC Quality Management, to describe its unique all-encompassing approach to excellence.
Headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, GC Corporation has received a number of accolades for business excellence. Similarly, GC EUROPE, based in Leuven, Belgium is a frequent winner of EFQM awards and other international prizes. Below is an outline of GCC and GCEʼs most prominent awards and certification, starting with the most recent:
- 2019: EFQM Award Winner
GC EUROPE NV has received the highest recognition the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) offers, and has become the first company in the dental industry, the first Benelux-Based company and the first subsidiary company of a Japanese Corporation to win this award.
The Award Ceremony was held in Helsinki, Finland, on October 23. - GC EUROPE was the only organization to become the Global Excellence Award Winner among the other selected finalists like Swiss Post, Bosch Security Systems, BMW, SDLG, Metsä Group.
Among the particular strengths of GC highlighted by the jury are the company’s strong culture of transparency and trust, “GC No Kokoro” (GC’s Heart), which is based on the Japanese wisdom of “Semui”. Semui places ethical values over short-term growth objectives and supports sustainable development. It is also the basis of a strong customer focus, which results in a high level of satisfaction with the company’s products and services, and leads to sustainable and successful partnerships. Another exceptional strength is the high-performance environment created by leaders using a blend of Japanese-European culture. Finally, GC’s Quality Management, relationships with Key Opinion Leaders and the deployment of the GC “Minimum Intervention” strategy were considered as role model practices.
- 2016: EFQM Prize Winner
In 2016, 15 organisations were nominated for the EFQM Excellence Award. Out of the 15 nominees, the jury identified 1 Award winner, 8 Prize winners and 6 Finalists. A Prize winner is an organisation who can demonstrate a role model practice within one specific Fundamental Concept with clear outstanding results, evidenced effectively as a “proven role model practice for learning”. This organisation has to be a driver for Excellence across some dimensions of the EFQM Excellence Model.
This year, the EEA Jury decided to recognise GC EUROPE N.V. as EFQM Prize Winner in Leading with Vision, Inspiration and Integrity.
Léon Tossaint, Chief Executive Officer of EFQM comments: “GC EUROPE is the embodiment of the successful merging of the Japenese and European cultures and values within a company. As a result, the company and its employees share a very special bond which, together with a strong focus on improvement processes, allow GC EUROPE to constantly remain innovative and leading within their business. The Jury was especially impressed by the Leadership behavior driving the company and by the common values defined in the “GC No Kokoro” framework which unites all associates. Well done!”
- 2013: EFQM European Excellence Award finalist
The EFQM Excellence Model is implemented by 30 000 organisations worldwide and GC EUROPE adopted it in 2006. GC EUROPE strives to be a leading example of excellence in business in Europe and was proud to be one of 10 finalists in 2013 for the EFQM European Excellence Award. Having successfully qualifying for the first two EFQM recognitions, GC EUROPE was eligible to apply for the prestigious third-level European Excellence Award. During this stringent application process, GC EUROPE was compared against other world-class leaders based on complete assessment by an expert assessment team spending on average 500 hours on each application.
- 2010: EFQM Recognised for Excellence 5 Stars
GC EUROPE was granted the second-level EFQM award in 2010 after being assessed against the EFQM Excellence Model providing the organisation with feedback, a plan for progress, and acknowledgement for obtained results.
- 2008: EFQM Recognised for Excellence 4 Stars
GC EUROPE was granted the second-level EFQM award in 2008 after being assessed against the EFQM Excellence Model providing the organisation with feedback, a plan for progress, and acknowledgement for obtained results.
- 2006: EFQM Committed to Excellence
GC EUROPE was granted the first-level EFQM award in 2006 showing that it aimed not only to offer dentists and dental technicians the products they need for their current and future work, but that it also wanted to measure its performance against that of other firms, especially those which EFQM regards as being the best and most widely respected in Europe. Based on a self-assessment, GC EUROPE was asked to identify, prioritise and implement improvement projects, which were then validated by an external assessor after 6-9 months.
2004: Japan Quality Medal
GC Corporation was the 18th company in the world to receive the Japan Quality Medal, regarded worldwide as the highest recognition for quality management in organisations. The Japan Quality Medal was established to commemorate the first International Conference on Quality Control (ICQC), which was held in Tokyo in October 1969. It is given to a company or business unit each year that has received the Deming Prize and applied total quality management continuously for three years or more (including the year of conferment of the Deming Prize), and has thereby achieved a remarkable business result.
The reason for GCʼs winning this prize is as follows: “(GC) has steadily implemented its policy based on a Mid-Term Management Plan to achieve the 2010 VISION initiative, and has achieved steady outcomes in the running of the company through active promotion of excellent quality management efforts, such as the development of new technologies and products, the improvement of productivity under factory innovation programs, the establishment of an onsite quality-assurance system, the innovation of production management systems, the centralisation of information using IT, human resource development based on a skills list, quality management, and environmental management.”
2000: Deming Award for Business Excellence
GC Corporation was the first company in the dental industry to receive the internationally renowned Deming Award for Business Excellence. The Deming Award (Japanese Administration Office: Union of Japanese Scientists and Engineers) is the highest honour in the area of quality control, and is conferred upon companies (or individuals) that have made a significant improvement in business results through total quality control implemented company-wide. The award is given annually to the company that has made significant improvements in business results through the application of total quality control.
GC received this coveted prize for its business activity, which is aimed at becoming a company that improves quality throughout the organisation and provides true health for people around the world, and is implemented through GQM to form the basis of the management approach.
The European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) exists to inspire organisations to achieve sustainable excellence by engaging leaders to learn, share and innovate using the EFQM Excellence Model. It was a natural choice for GC EUROPE to become a member of the EFQM and to apply the model to its own operations. GC EUROPE has been successful at every stage of EFQM awards by demonstrating it has applied the model to its leadership, company strategy, people, partnerships and resources, processes, products and services as reflected in its customer results, people results, society results and business results.
Worldwide over 30 000 organisations use the EFQM model and GC EUROPE is proud to achieve recognition across industries for its benchmarks and processes.
Further international accreditation
In alignment with global and European standards, GC has achieved a number of key Management Systems Certificates. ISO 9001 is an international standard for quality management systems encompassing all areas of quality assurance as well as some aspects of organisational management, such as customer satisfaction and improvement. GC, as a global company, became one of the earliest to receive an ISO 9001 certification in 1994. In April 2004 GC received ISO 13485 certification, which specifically provides for the quality assurance of medical devices. GC was the first dental equipment/material manufacturer to receive either certification. Currently, all partner companies of GC are certified under ISO 13485.
You can find a full overview of GCʼs certificates here.
Our partners and customers
As a general manufacturer of dental care products, GC EUROPE is in the business of protecting peopleʼs health. By applying quality control systems and receiving international accolades, partners and customers can trust that GC EUROPE products and services are delivered to the highest of standards. This is also evidence of GC EUROPEʼs commitment to continual growth and innovation, based on feedback for improvement. The teams work tirelessly to ensure that benchmarks are met and expectations are risen above. For GC EUROPE, this is how business should be done.