APSCA Newsletter – April 2018

30/04/2018 - No Comments

During April, APSCA continued to leverage a productive March quarter through focused development of an improved Member Application and Auditor Certification Process. The Association also actioned development of an Ethics and Integrity Program with the appointment of an Ethics & Integrity Advisor.

The Association’s President & CEO, Rona Starr commented “Rationalization of our administrative function is critical to the preservation and promotion of our core mission; to enhance the professionalism, consistency and credibility of social compliance auditors. Q1 2018 delivered substantial advancement across the five pillars of our Strategic Plan and will continue to foster industry confidence to better service our Members”.

Auditor Registrations

We are enrolling auditors associated with APSCA Member Firms who are now completing their registration online in APSCA’s data system.  Of our 40 member firms, 13 have completed their auditor registrations representing over 900 auditors. Over 2,500 auditors are scheduled to be fully registered by the end of May 2018.

We encourage our Member Firms to have their auditor’s subscribe to APSCA’s newsletter to stay up to date here

Auditor Certification
Last month we shared our progress on Auditor Certification.  We are incorporating the learnings from the China Pilot and working with third party experts to finalize an examination process which is scalable and cost efficient for all.  This requires development of the following:

  • Multiple ChoiceShort Answers Exam
    • Working with a third party to convert many short answer questions into multiple choice questions, determining the pass mark and developing a study guide.
  • Case Study Exam
    • Further refine the Case Study Exam by reviewing the questions and finalize the on-line platform to track results.
  • Interview
    • Refinement of the overarching Case Study and individual scenarios used throughout the face to face interview process, further refine the scoring and the on-line platform to track results.

Applications – Firm Membership
The Executive Board has prioritized development of an enhanced application process for Member Firms effecting a temporary hold on the processing of new member applications until the process has been finalized. 

APSCA Membership has always been accepted on a provisional basis with all member firms required to re-apply following launch of the improved application process.

The new process is expected for release in Q3 2018, following which APSCA will contact all provisional members and pending membership applicants to initiate the revised process.

APSCA Stakeholder Board Developments
Additional to the Executive Board, APSCA is serviced by a dedicated, multi-stakeholder Board with independent, brand, retail and initiative representation. The Stakeholder Board shares three members with the Executive Board and has provided almost three years of support and guidance.  

During April, Mr Jan Furstenborg, announced his retirement from the Stakeholder Board following much thought and deliberation. Mr Furstenborg was ASPCA’s first independent Stakeholder Board member and instrumental in the development of the Competency Framework and Code of Professional Conduct.

Mr Furstenborg has offered to provide ongoing guidance to APSCA on an ad-hoc basis as we continue our growth and development.  We wish Jan the best in his retirement and thank him for his gracious support and willingness to advise APSCA in an ongoing, albeit unofficial capacity. APSCA is pleased to announce that Mr Wesley Wilson has taken the position recently vacated by Mr Furstenborg.

With Mr Darrell Doren stepping down earlier this year and the movement of Mr Wesley Wilson to the role of independent, the Stakeholder Board are pleased to welcome Mr Christian Ewert and Ms Jan Saumweber to the Stakeholder Board with immediate effect.  Mr Ewert is the Director General of amfori, a leading global business association for open and sustainable trade and Ms Saumweber is the SVP Responsible Sourcing for Walmart. To read more about Mr Ewert and Ms Saumweber  click here.

APSCA would like to thank both Jan Furstenborg and Darrell Doren for their years of contribution to the Stakeholder Board and welcome Christian Ewert and Jan Saumweber. ​

Ethics & Integrity Advisor
The process to develop an Ethics & Integrity Program was agreed during the Executive Board meeting this past March.  Tim Lindon has been brought on by APSCA to lead this work and joined as a Senior Advisor. 

Mr Lindon is a Senior Fellow at the New York University School of Law Program on Compliance and Enforcement, and formerly Vice President and Chief Compliance Officer for Philip Morris International.  

According to Mr Lindon, this will include the handling of allegations where APSCA members (firms and auditors) have alleged to have violated APSCA’s Code of Professional Conduct adding “APSCA will implement an ethics and integrity program that is transparent, credible, efficient and workable”.

2018 Annual General Meeting
4 December 2018, 1.00pm – 4.00pm | Hong Kong
 While we will endeavor to accommodate all interested parties, seats will be limited necessitating an allocation for individual organizations.  Further details, including registration information, will be provided in due course. 

New APSCA Website

APSCA has commenced revision of our website with a view to improve accessibility and member service.  We request your patience while these changes take effect and welcome all input pre and post release.

Out & About
APSCA was recently represented at a series of events including the ELEVATE Leadership Series (22 March 2018 – Sydney, Australia) and the Sedex Conference – Impact Through Leadership (13 & 14 March 2018, London). During the latter, Rona Starr (President & CEO APSCA) participated on the panel ‘Whose responsibility is it to go ‘beyond compliance’?‘. The discussion shared insight into the attainment of social compliance and considered responsibilities for the assurance of sustained compliance ‘beyond the audit’. Panellists also included Jill Tucker (C&A Foundation), Baptiste Carrier-Pradal (Sustainable Apparel Coalition) and Dr Simon Lord (Sime Darby). The full discussion can be viewed via the link below.


Our news and thoughts on the Social Compliance industry

Press Release

Industry Press Releases

​Verite  in partnership with the /  UN Special Rapporteur on Human Trafficking held a workshop 31 October 2016 in New York, which many of APSCA members attended.  Follow this link to see their press release.  To get involved, contact Philip Hunter from Verite

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