Patrick Neyts, Managing Partner of VECTRA International and co-founder of TEDD (Trusted Experts on Due Diligence)
James McMichael, Former founding partner of Elevate and Founder of Mosaic Responsible Supplier Resource
Patrick Neyts, Managing Partner of VECTRA International and co-founder of TEDD (Trusted Experts on Due Diligence) shared his Pro Tips with the Mosaic community to wrap up Mosaic’s “Tips from the Pros” series last week. Mosaic’s Founder and Managing Partner, James McMichael, joined Neyts to discuss what it takes to create credible social compliance programs for effective remediation—soon to be required by Human Rights Due Diligence (HRDD) laws.
Neyts and McMichael dissect the social auditing industry, after decades spent within it. Starting with Social Audits & Reporting they look at why the industry is plagued by mistrust and why it’s so important to build mutual trust in the auditing process. It starts with addressing the misalignment of intentions of audits—brands want to understand the risk to their own business, when the purpose of an audit is to identify risks to health, safety, security of workers in a factory. It’s no wonder why record falsification results from this dynamic. Furthermore, audits lack the specificity to really make a difference, and those reviewing audit results do not have the place-based or background information needed to review Corrective Action Plans in order to help suppliers continuously improve.
This is why Root Cause Analysis is core to the improvement journey, and can help address the symptom (audit finding) of the true problem. It is the only way for brands and their supplier partners to make lasting improvements. Threat, Risk & System Change (TRS) is a process to identify and remove instances of imminent threats, further identify potential risks and lastly to address the systems-level solution of a problem’s root cause. Similarly, the Five Whys are another common tool to identify and address problems systematically.
Once a factory has committed to Root Cause Analysis, it’s important to evaluate the plan and manage expectations. Specific tools to guide this process are the Hierarchy of Controls (elimination, substitution, engineering controls, administrative controls and PPE), and Plan, Do, Check, Act (PDCA). Both are a mindset for problem solving—(i.e. substitute overtime with floating shifts). Setting realistic time and results expectations for these problems to be addressed is fundamental to meaningful improvement, which ensures that the problem is no longer present when the factory returns to normal operations. An indicator that the root cause has not been addressed is if you see the problem return when the facility resumes normal operations post audit cycle.
Social compliance programs and reporting that don’t prompt, support, and drive action on the ground have limited value, making corrective action management and supplier engagement a critical component to any social compliance program.
Listen in to these seasoned experts for our last “Tips from the Pros” webinar to culminate the four-part series where the “Pros” joined Mosaic to share their practical and actionable tips to drive supplier support & lasting remediation.
To watch the recordings for the full series click HERE.