ICT

Themes Key Findings

2018 Information & Communications Technology

The 40 ICT companies were assessed across the benchmark's seven themes, which were developed to capture the key areas where companies need to take action to eradicate forced labor from their supply chains: commitment; traceability and risk assessment; purchasing practices; recruitment; worker voice; monitoring; and remedy. There are a total of 23 indicators across the seven themes. For each theme a company can score a total of 100 points.

32

Overall Score 2018 Information & Communications Technology
33 Theme Score

Summary of Results

The majority of companies disclose having an audit process in place for their suppliers that includes monitoring for forced labor. Twelve out of 40 companies say that they conduct, or may conduct, non-scheduled audits. Hitachi, Intel, and Foxconn have started to undertake unannounced audits since 2016. However, no company disclosed a percentage of unannounced audits they had undertaken on suppliers.

Just over half of companies disclosed that their audit programs include worker interviews (22 out of 40) and visits to associated production facilities (20 out of 40). Twelve of these companies use the RBA's Validated Audit Process to undertake audits on suppliers, which includes a review of relevant documentation, interviews with suppliers' workers separately from their management, and visits to facilities and worker housing such as dormitories.

Seven out of 40 companies stated that they audit below the first-tier of suppliers. One company expressed experiencing difficulties in obtaining information from their first-tier suppliers regarding who their below-tier suppliers are, due to confidentiality. The company further noted that where they were aware of them, below-tier suppliers may refuse audit requests due to the lack of a direct business relationship.

Companies disclose insufficient information on how their audit processes work in practice. Only four out of 40 companies give an indication of the percentage of workers interviewed during audits, despite the fact that more than three times this amount say that they conduct them. Fifteen out of 40 companies give a summary of their audit findings. Leading companies are disclosing compliance data per audit item, such as the number of violations per item, or the percentage of suppliers found to have violations.

Auditing Process

The company audits its suppliers to measure compliance with applicable regulations and with its supply chain standards. The process includes non-scheduled visits, a review of relevant documents, interviews with workers, and visits to associated production facilities and related worker housing. The company also audits suppliers below the first tier.

The company has a supplier audit process that includes: (1) non-scheduled visits; (2) a review of relevant documents; (3) interviews with workers; (4) visits to associated production facilities and related worker housing; and (5) supplier audits below the first tier.

Low: 0
High: 100
42

Audit Disclosure

The company publicly discloses information on the results of its audits. This includes the percentage of suppliers audited annually, the percentage of unannounced audits, the number or percentage of workers interviewed, information on the qualification of the auditors used, and a summary of findings, including details regarding any violations revealed.

The company discloses: (1) the percentage of suppliers audited annually; (2) the percentage of unannounced audits; (3) the number or percentage of workers interviewed during audits; (4) information on the qualification of the auditors used; and (5) a summary of findings, including details regarding any violations revealed.

Low: 0
High: 80
23

Auditing Disclosure: Notable Example

HP Inc.

HP discloses data from its 2017 supplier audits, including that it conducted interviews with 2,251 workers. The company further specifies the number of male and female workers interviewed.

Recommended Action

Auditing Process

Companies should ensure that audit processes include worker interviews, conducted without managers being present, and disclose data on the number or percentage of workers interviewed during audits.