Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI) Certification
What is BSCI Certification?
BSCI (Business Social Compliance Initiative) was founded in 2003 for the development of tools and procedures for European Business Social Compliance Programmes. The BSCI Certification is designed on the basis of labour standards of the (ILO) International Labour Organisation and other important international regulations, such as the UN Charter for Human Rights, and national regulations.
To maintain and monitor the social standards of the consumer goods in all the supplier countries, BSCI acts as a
common European platform of retailers, industry, and importing companies. The Business Social Compliance Initiative was officially launched on Nov 30 in 2004. The coordinated efforts of the retail industry in Europe for implementing a standard code of conduct is represented through BSCI. It is voluntary and helps in improving the working conditions in supplier countries.
How was BSCI founded?
BSCI was formally founded by FTA. The Foreign Trade Association (FTA) is a non-profit organization, founded in 1977. The members include companies and associations from 10 EU countries. FTA represents the interests of importing retailers and trade lobbies in the international trade issues. BSCI was founded in March 2003 to develop the tools and procedures for the BSCI Programme. The BSCI Member companies and the supplier nations commit themselves to the objectives of the BSCI.
Following are the requirements of BSCI, which is implemented in a developmental approach:
- Legal Compliance
- Freedom of an Association
- Right to Collective Bargaining
- Prohibition on Discrimination
- Working Hours
- Workplace Health and Safety
- Prohibition of Child Labour
- Prohibition of Forced Labour and Disciplinary Measures
- Environment and Safety Issues
- Management Systems
What are the key features of BSCI?
- The BSCI does not issue certificate.
- The factory premises can display the cover page of an audit report that outlines the audit’s results and its validity. It can be used as proof of an audit.
- BSCI has 2 membership systems.
- Regular membership- It applies to retail, trading, brand, and importing companies with an active role in the supply chain. It integrates their suppliers into the BSCI Certification auditing and qualification process.
- The associate membership- It applies to those companies or associations that do not have an active role in the supply chain.
- A BSCI database contains information on the supplier’s profile and auditing results of all BSCI member.
- This database helps in avoiding unnecessary multiple audits, which is costly. It also tracks non-compliance issues, which highlights the areas where training of the suppliers is essential. This data is helpful in evaluating the performance of all the BSCI activities each year.
- BSCI is a participatory platform.
- All the members are invited for developing the BSCI system and its services.
- For finding the right partners to implement the BSCI system, the BSCI service provider directory is very helpful.
Which companies require BSCI Audits?
For the companies operating in international market, and cooperating with the supplier companies abroad, BSCI is really helpful. The supplier audits are important for the companies aiming at strengthening their responsible corporate action, both internally and in the supply chain.
What are the advantages of BSCI Audit?
- Laying the foundation for future business relationships, which will help in gaining advantages in the tender procedures.
- Strengthening the trust of customers, consumers, and business partners and employees; and exposure to new marketing possibilities.
- demonstrating a responsible and safe production and working conditions.
- Improving the management of the value chain.
- It serves as a proof of better working conditions and other social commitments.
- Saving costs by the avoidance of multiple audit
- It creates a basis for perfect SA8000 certification.