About Walmart’s Request
If you’ve landed on this page, you are likely seeking information about SA8000® certification in order to meet Walmart’s social compliance requirements.
In 2018, Walmart moved away from performing their own social compliance audits, instead accepting suppliers based on participation in third-party social schemes, including SA8000.
SAI is not affiliated with Walmart. We are an independent, mission-driven, nonprofit organization. SAI developed the SA8000 Standard and certification system in 1997 aiming to improve workers’ lives and give organizations ownership of their own social compliance systems.
Although the language in Walmart’s request might refer only to an “audit,” each scheme functions differently. SA8000 is a certification program designed to improve your social performance and management systems over time.
While audits are required for certification, it is not a code-of-conduct audit but a commitment to improve over the three-year certification cycle.
SAI does not conduct audits. SAI’s sister organization, SAAS, accredits certification bodies (CBs) to perform SA8000 audits and issue certifications. Only SAAS-accredited CBs can audit to SA8000. If you choose to pursue certification, you will need to contract directly with an accredited auditing firm.
1. Complete the SA8000 Self-Assessment (before or after step 2)
- The SA8000 Self-Assessment is a benchmarking tool and resource based on the 10 management systems categories of SA8000.
- It assesses the maturity of your management systems with regard to social performance, and points out opportunities for improvement.
- The auditor, as part of the audit process, will perform an Independent Evaluation against the same criteria multiple times throughout the three-year cycle.
- Instructions to register for the Self-Assessment
2. Locate and contact an accredited CB.
- You will contract directly with the CB to perform audits and grant certification if your organization meets the criteria of the SA8000 standard.
- While SA8000 is in 65+ countries, each CB’s SA8000 scope is geographically limited. If the CB you would like to work with is not accredited for your country, you can discuss with them the possibility of expanding their scope to your location if needed. Refer to the scope language on SAAS’s website before contacting them.
- Note: currently only ABS, ALGI and ESTS have scope to perform audits in the US
3. Schedule and undergo Stage 1 and 2 audits
- Once you have contracted with a CB, they will share an audit plan and schedule with you. It will detail the audit schedule and when the CB will make the certification decision.
- Note: once you have an audit plan and schedule, share the dates with Walmart so they know when to expect evidence of compliance
- There will be two on-site audits.
- The Stage 1 audit is a preparatory audit and typically takes 1-2 audit days. The auditor will ensure you have the right systems in place and are prepared for the Stage 2 audit.
- The Stage 2 audit is a full certification audit and can take 4-10 audit days depending on the size and complexity of your organization.
4. Share certification and audit reports with Walmart
- If granted certification, you will be given an SA8000 certificate by your CB.
- The certificate is yours, as are any audit reports produced in the process.
- Walmart will want copies of both as evidence that you are meeting their social compliance requirements.
- Learn more about SA8000
- Benefits of SA8000
- Accredited CBs
- Please use the tools and templates we provide in the Self-Assessment course.
- SA8000 Guidance Document
- This is a useful tool to better understand the expectations of the Standard
- If you have an further questions, please contact SAI at [email protected]