The FairCapacity Program aims to enable companies throughout the global apparel supply chain to improve production capacity measurement and forecasting practices, help companies assess the true costs and benefits of production, and to incentivize good purchasing practices that relieve unrealistic time and price pressures, often unfairly borne by workers. An important part of this program is the development of a suite of tools and resources to support mutual accountability and reinforcement of efforts by buyers and suppliers to reduce labor risks in the global apparel supply chain.
Tools and resources include:
- Responsible Subcontracting Overview & Guidelines
- Responsible Purchasing Practices Guidelines & Checklist
- Mutual Code of Conduct
- Cost-Benefit Analysis Tool (Subcontracting & Overtime)
- Workflow Mapping & Order Life Cycle Management Tools
- Supplier Production Capacity Calculator
Responsible Subcontracting Overview & Guidelines
Helps buyers understand the benefits and best practices of responsible subcontracting and how they can enable it in their supply chains.
Responsible subcontracting allows established suppliers to grow their business in a responsive way without having to maintain large workforces that they cannot sustain during all seasons. It also gives small businesses access to work and a chance to grow and connect with buyers. However, problems arise when subcontracting is unauthorized and done illicitly to avoid labor or other regulations. This situation is not helped when buyers prohibit all subcontracting—these policies do not end the practice, but further reduce the amount of oversight. The Responsible Subcontracting Guidelines will help buyers understand how they can support ethical subcontracting in their supply chain.
Responsible Purchasing Practices Guidelines & Checklist
Provides guidance to help buyers improve their purchasing practices to support better social and labor compliance and worker wellbeing in their supply chains.
If purchasing practices are not conducted in a responsible manner, they can lead to critical compliance issues like low wages, forced labor, excessive overtime, use of underage workers, unsafe working conditions, and unauthorized subcontracting. Responsible purchasing practices can mitigate these issues and lead to improved productivity, supply chain efficiency, and increased profits for both buyers and suppliers. The Responsible Purchasing Practices Guidance and Checklist tools explore ways in which buyers can improve their purchasing practices to support worker wellbeing throughout their supply chains and reduce the risks of excessive overtime, unauthorized subcontracting, and forced labor. In doing so, buyers will also improve the quality of their products and business bottom line.
Mutual Buyer-Supplier Code of Conduct
Incorporates buyer purchasing practices, supplier labor conditions, and other responsibilities into a statement of shared responsibility.
Most brand/retailer codes of conduct focus exclusively on requirements imposed on suppliers. This top-down approach ignores the ways that buyer behavior affects suppliers’ ability to comply while also completing orders on time and at a high quality standard. The mutual code of conduct provides a model for recognizing the responsibilities that buyers have to suppliers and holding both parties accountable to each other.
Cost-Benefit Analysis Tool (Subcontracting & Overtime)
Equips suppliers with skills and knowledge to determine the costs and benefits of using overtime and/or subcontracting to complete an order in a certain amount of time.
In addition to the labor risks associated with using overtime and unauthorized subcontracting to complete orders (i.e., increased risk for forced labor, child labor, and other labor violations), these tactics are often costly and detrimental to suppliers’ bottom lines. Many suppliers use overtime hours and subcontracting without fully understanding whether it is financially sustainable to do so. The Subcontracting and Overtime Cost-Benefit Analysis tools help suppliers determine the costs and benefits of using these tactics to complete specific orders. By increasing their understanding and awareness of how this affects different costing factors and overall profit margins, suppliers will have the information they need to make more financially sustainable choices for their business—eventually reducing their reliance on these risky behaviors.
Workflow Mapping & Order Life Cycle Management Tools
FairCapacity Workflow Tools help suppliers implement more efficient processes and help buyers visualize how their timelines and expectations overlap with production processes.
There are many steps to creating a garment, on both the buyer and supplier side of the relationship. Between product design, production, and going to market there are many opportunities for poor communication or planning to disrupt operations, cause delays, or lead to increased labor risks. Buyer and supplier workflows overlap and affect each other at several points, but the two parties rarely plan or communicate about these processes in conjunction with each other. The Workflow Mapping tools help users systematically visualize and understand production processes in relation to both buyer and supplier expected lead times, identify and target monitoring activities on critical processes, and increase overall efficiency and control over production.
Supplier Production Capacity Calculator
The Supplier Production Capacity Calculator is now available by registering for the FairCapacity Platform.
Download the Tools
The FairCapacity Program is presented by…