Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA)
The Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA) is a widely recognized social audit framework that assesses companies’ social and ethical performance in global supply chains. The SMETA audit is designed to help companies ensure that their suppliers and subcontractors meet ethical trade standards and comply with applicable laws and regulations. Here are the key benefits and processes of the SMETA audit:
1. Enhanced supply chain transparency:
The SMETA audit helps companies to gain a better understanding of their supply chain and identify potential ethical risks and non-compliance issues. This can lead to greater transparency and accountability in the supply chain, which can help to improve stakeholder confidence and build a positive reputation for the company.
2. Improved risk management:
The SMETA audit provides a comprehensive assessment of a company’s social and ethical performance, including areas such as labor standards, health and safety, environmental management, and business integrity. By identifying areas of non-compliance and potential risks, companies can take action to mitigate these risks and improve their overall risk management approach.
3. Compliance with ethical standards:
The SMETA audit is designed to assess compliance with a range of international ethical standards, including the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) Base Code, the International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions, and the United Nations (UN) Universal Declaration of Human Rights. By demonstrating compliance with these standards, companies can demonstrate their commitment to responsible and sustainable business practices.
1. Planning and scoping:
The SMETA audit begins with a planning phase, where the auditor works with the company to define the audit scope, objectives, and timeline. This involves identifying the key areas of focus, such as labor standards, health and safety, and environmental management.
2. Document review:
The auditor then reviews the company’s policies, procedures, and documentation related to the audit focus areas. This includes reviewing employee records, contracts, and other relevant documents to assess compliance with relevant standards and regulations.
3. Site visits and interviews:
The auditor then conducts site visits to the company’s facilities and interviews employees and other stakeholders to gather additional information about the company’s social and ethical performance. This includes assessing working conditions, employee health and safety, and environmental management practices.
4. Reporting and follow-up:
Following the audit, the auditor prepares a report detailing the findings, including any non-compliance issues and recommendations for improvement. The company then develops a corrective action plan to address any non-compliance issues identified during the audit. A follow-up audit may also be conducted to assess progress in implementing the corrective action plan.
The SMETA audit is a comprehensive and effective tool for assessing a company’s social and ethical performance in global supply chains. By identifying potential risks and areas of non-compliance, companies can take action to mitigate these risks and improve their overall performance. The SMETA audit also helps to promote transparency and accountability in the supply chain, which can help to build trust with stakeholders and demonstrate a company’s commitment to responsible and sustainable business practices.
Find out more here: Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit
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