SA8000 Certification: Getting Started

Step 1: Social Fingerprint® Self-Assessment

To complete the Social Fingerprint® Self-Assessment in SAI’s online Training Center, choose your language below and follow the instructions:

Duration: 60–90 minutes

Fee: USD300*

Key Name: If you have already selected your accredited certification body, please contact them for their unique Key Name for SAI’s Training Center. If you have not yet chosen your certification body, please use the Key Name SA8000SF.

Step 2: Contact an Accredited Certification Body

Following your organization’s successful completion of the self-assessment, please contact an accredited certification body that will evaluate your organization’s social performance and management system against the SA8000® Standard. Accreditation is an integral part of the SA8000 program and only accredited certification bodies may award recognized SA8000 certificates.

The certification body will conduct an initial Stage 1 Audit (typically taking 1 to 2 days) to assess the organization’s readiness for SA8000. Organizations that move on to Stage 2 will go through a full certification audit, which can take from 2 to 10 days, depending on the size and scope of the organization. As part of both stages, the certification body will conduct a Social Fingerprint® Independent Evaluation that will help the organization to identify strengths and weaknesses in its management system.

Step 3: On-site Surveillance Monitoring

If an organization is granted an SA8000 certificate, it will receive subsequent on-site surveillance monitoring—a combination of announced and unannounced visits, typically twice per year. An Independent Evaluation will also be conducted during selected surveillance audits during the three-year certification cycle to track improvements over time. The SA8000 certificate is valid for three years, and the organization may recertify to SA8000 at the end of the third year.

To see how the Social Fingerprint Self-Assessments and Independent Evaluations are integrated into the SA8000 certification cycle, click here. If your organization upgraded from SA8000:2008 to SA8000:2014 in the middle of its certification cycle, click here for the semi-annual surveillance cycle and here for the annual surveillance cycle.

*Payable by credit card at the SAI Training Center. In case you would like to pay via bank transfer, please contact Please note that it may take 3–5 days for a bank transfer to be processed and before you can start your self-assessment.

For more information, contact

SA8000 Certification Costs (pdf)