As of 2021, supply chain transparency has gone from a nice-to-have for companies to a legal obligation. New corporate due diligence legislation is an exciting step for the industry. In 2021 alone, laws have been enacted in the EU, the Netherlands, Norway, Germany, and Canada.
COVID has highlighted to companies, consumers, suppliers and workers alike the impact of shipping risks overseas. New legislation seeks to connect corporate profits with actions taken throughout the supply chain in the name of producing their merchandise. Most legislation (and proposed legislation) mandates companies publicly report human rights violations and remediation throughout supply chains. This is a critical step to protecting human rights, but fresh laws with vague enforcement mechanisms risk making social responsibility throughout supply chains a tick-box exercise.
Tech-first, solutions-second tools which simply identify risks – without proactively addressing how to fix them – will be tempting but will also leave serious supply chain risks unchecked. Companies who work with third-party consultants to put effort into meeting the intention of the laws to improve working conditions throughout their supply chain will find meaningful change will be challenging yet financially and socially rewarding.
According to a recent report from global law firm DLA Piper, companies can better avoid supply chain bottlenecks and regulatory liability – including fines up to 10% of global revenue and sanctions against high tiers of company management – when “due diligence risk analysis [is] conducted via independent third parties with knowledge of the reality in India and South Asia.”
Labor Solutions’ Asia-based team has spent nearly a decade discerning which data is needed to help companies better understand where to focus resources and consulting with clients on strategies for proactively addressing supply chain transparency.
Founded in Indonesia and headquartered in Singapore with a global team now serving North and South America, Europe, Southeast Asia, India, and China, Labor Solutions can help your business meet global regulations and generate economic returns.
Simple, proactive tools such as Labor Solutions’ Worker Survey can mitigate these risks while providing real solutions. Because we get the data that matters to help you generate real solutions, Labor Solutions can keep your business proactive when it comes to global trends in mandatory human rights due diligence legislation.
Labor Solutions’ tools and services engage, connect, and educate brands, suppliers, and workers.
1. Worker Survey to Better Understand Risks: The tools first help to better understand the risks through engaging workers and suppliers with live worker feedback. Surveys are customizable to fit your business needs and focused on clear indicators including:
Forced Labor and Responsible Recruitment for Migrant Workers
Worker Safety and Compliance
Gender Equity and Gender Based Violence and Harassment (GBVH)
2. Constant Connection-- Ongoing, Two-Way Anonymous Grievance Mechanism: Through WOVO Connect, brands can help suppliers and factory managers engage with feedback, track trends, and understand what workers need now to meet international regulations. Connect’s Case Management System tracks grievances as they occur, providing live data to streamline internal processes, quickly make decisions and close the loop.
3. Workers and managers throughout your supply chain can also access Labor Solutions’ eLearnings to engage workers and remediate issues actively as they arise. Create your own curricula or use curricula designed by industry leaders;
Working Conditions by Better Work
Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) by Better Work
Forced Labor, Child Labor and Minimum Age
Discrimination and Elimination of Violence + Harassment
Gender Based Violence
Sexual Harassment Prevention
Parenting during the Pandemic
These three approaches help companies meet the following new regulations at once:
The EU’s “Draft Directive on Corporate Due Diligence and Corporate Accountability” - mandating that companies identify, prevent, manage, remedy, and report on human rights and environmental risks and violations in their “value chains;”
The Dutch Bill on “Responsible and Sustainable International Business Conduct” – imposing a duty of care for all companies registered in or selling to the Netherlands on mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence;
The Norwegian “Relating to Enterprises’ Transparency and Work on Fundamental Human Rights and Decent Working Conditions” Act – imposing duties on businesses to carry out due diligence in accordance with the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises;
The German “Supply Chains Due Diligence” Act – mandates all businesses have an established risk management system and grievance mechanism for businesses to comply with due diligence obligations; and
Canada’s Bill S-216, “An Act to enact the Modern Slavery Act and to amend the Customs Tariff” – includes “continuous reporting” obligations to make sure your solutions are designed to reflect live supply chain trends.
Labor Solutions has spent 2021 helping businesses proactively prioritize risks through engaging workers directly through our Worker Survey tool, connecting workers to managers with our add-on Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) packages, and educating workers directly to promote continuous supply chain resilience via eLearning.
For more information about what Labor Solutions can do to support your business meet new regulations, feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.