The SA8000 Standard is the world’s leading social certification program. The SA8000 Standard and Certification System provide a framework for organizations of all types, in any industry, and in any country to conduct business in a way that is fair and decent for workers and to demonstrate their adherence to the highest social standards. Created by SAI in 1997 as the first credible social certification, it has led the industry for over 20 years.
The SA8000 Standard
The SA8000 Standard is based on internationally recognized standards of decent work, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, ILO conventions, and national laws. SA8000 applies a management-systems approach to social performance and emphasizes continual improvement—not checklist-style auditing.
Elements of the Standard
- Child Labor
- Forced or Compulsory Labor
- Health and Safety
- Freedom of Association & Right to Collective Bargaining
- Disciplinary Practices
- Working Hours
- Management System
Visit the SA8000 Resource Center for useful resources and information.
The Value of Accreditation
Accreditation, or oversight by a credible and authorized independent third party, ensures that social audits are undertaken impartially, competently, and effectively.
Social Accountability Accreditation Services (SAAS) provides SA8000 program oversight to assure quality and reduce risk. Only SA8000 certificates issued by audit firms validated by SAAS are recognized by stakeholders as a true indicator of social performance. If you or a stakeholder are seeking SA8000 certification, ensure you are working with a SAAS-accredited body.
SA8000 protects 2,191,838 workers across…
SA8000 improves standards for workers and for business.
Management systems, worker engagement, a culture of continuous improvement, and other elements of SA8000 not only lead to better working conditions and worker well-being, they also have benefits for productivity, stakeholder relationships, market access, and more.
Benefits for Employers
SA8000-certified organizations experience a variety of positive business impacts, including:
- Better relationships with workers, customers, and external stakeholders
- More effective management systems that improve workflows throughout the organization, resulting in
- Improved quality and productivity
- Better hazard and risk detection
- Increased supply chain control
- Higher employee retention
- Enhanced reputation, appeal to global buyers, and preferential status in government tenders
Benefits for Workers
In order to achieve SA8000 certification, an organization has to demonstrate that they meet a standard for worker safety and well-being. The benefits to employees working in SA8000-certified organizations include:
- Safe workplaces and healthy working conditions
- A living wage
- Increased awareness of rights and opportunities to organize
- Better relationships with management and more input in workplace decision-making
Benefits for Brands and Retailers
Brands and retailers that accept SA8000 certification in lieu of first- or second-party social auditing experience benefit from:
- SA8000’s comprehensive social compliance program
- Third-party oversight for quality assurance
- Supplier ownership of social compliance program
- More resources for capacity-building and other social programs, as they are no longer needed for company code-of-conduct audits
Benefits of SA8000
SA8000 is good for workers and for business. See what some of our certified organizations are saying.
Partha SenguptaTata Steel
Vice President of Corporate Services and SA8000 Management Representative
Saka TeutaAnkea Cement
CSR Administration Officer
David GonçalvesImpetus Group
Head of Human Resources
H M NerurkarTata Steel
Executive Vice President
Trusted by brands and retailers around the world
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