Power to the people – Toyota’s suggestion system

Toyota’s desire to put the customer first and achieve the highest levels of quality in vehicle production has been a company-wide philosophy from day one and the suggestion system is part of this.

A programme called Statistical Quality Control was introduced as early as 1949, and in May 1951 was expanded to include a new concept called the Toyota Creative Idea and Suggestion System (TCISS).

Toyota's suggestion system

The purpose of the TCISS was to empower every employee to participate in improving product quality by inviting them to make informed suggestions on ways to improve the production process.

Previously it had only been the privilege of upper management to make suggestions in that respect, but was now opened up to include employees at the sharp end of production; arguably the ones most likely to highlight potential issues.

Extra motivation was incorporated into the system with the establishment of an Individual Annual Award to honour excellent suggestions, today split up into gold, silver and bronze medals. However, the real value of the system was that it provided motivation to employees by focusing on their skills and creativity.

Indeed, the slogan Good Thinking, Good Products was solicited by an in-house TCISS contest in 1953 and still appears as a highly visible sign in every Toyota factory across the globe.

As the years have passed, Toyota’s suggestion system has become steadily more productive. By 1974, the number of creative idea submissions had exceeded one million; 10 million by 1984 and 20 million by 1988. The incredible milestone of 40 million ideas was reached in 2011 and continues to rise.

With so many individuals providing informed input and a human touch into the build quality of every vehicle, is it any wonder that Toyota’s products are world-renowned for their quality, reliability and durability?

Details in this article were correct at the time of publication.


  1. How do I contact Toyota with my new wheel changing device that helps motorists change a Wheel as a lot of people struggle aspecily with electric cars as wheel s are bigger and heavier the idea is patent pending

    1. Hi Graham, thanks for reaching out.

      Feel free to comment any questions here and we can contact the relevant teams for you.

      Alternatively, you can submit an enquiry form through our Help Centre. This can be accessed here: https://fal.cn/3A0nX

      Hope this helps.


  2. Hello,

    Have Toyota considered adding tracking functionality to their car keys, I have attached a Samsung Smart Tag to both my car keys – they don’t get lost anymore, well not for long. And when I get my second car, around Xmas, Smart Tags will be another, easy, way to identify which key is for which car.



    1. Hi Martin, thanks for your question.

      We will pass this onto the relevant product teams as an idea to consider.

      Hearing your experience is very valuable to us and we appreciate your feedback greatly.


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