APSCA Newsletter February 2021

28/02/2021 - No Comments

During February, our Membership continued to strengthen with Auditor enrolments exceeding 4,300 and an additional six firms attaining full membership status. As participation in the CSCA examination program remains high, we were also pleased to realize 34% growth in our CSCA cohort during the month.

March has commenced with the announcement of significant disciplinary action against a Member Firm, determined to have violated APSCA’s Code and Standards of Professional Conduct while an update of Firm applications is also provided below. 


In this issue: 

  • APSCA Announces Disciplinary Action Against a Member Firm
  • Member Firm Announcements
  • Upcoming Deadlines & Reminders
  • Member Auditors – 2021 Membership Fees Due
  • CSCA Examination Progress
  • Auditor Enrollments
  • In Case You Missed It – 2020 APSCA’s Annual General Meeting & Stakeholder Online Event
  • FAQs

APSCA Announces Disciplinary Action Against a Member Firm

APSCA announced that it has revoked the membership of Leverage Limited on 1 March 2021. APSCA determined that Leverage’s conduct related to the improper copying and distribution of APSCA’s certification exam questions violated APSCA’s Code and Standards of Professional Conduct (view full media release here).

APSCA’s President & CEO Rona Starr stated “APSCA exists to enhance the professionalism, consistency and credibility of the individuals and organizations performing independent social compliance audits. The imposition of disciplinary sanctions on individual auditors and members firms who violate our professional standards is not taken lightly and is an important component of our efforts to achieve these goals for the social compliance industry.”

Member Firm Announcements

We are pleased to congratulate full APSCA Member Firms RINA Services S.p.A., Excel Sustainability Management & Technology Co., Limited (SMT), Primus Auditing Operations, Control Union Certifications BV, Ethical Trade Services Africa Limited and Centre Testing International Group Co., Ltd (CTI) on their commitment to the realization of APSCA’s mission “To enhance the Professionalism and Credibility of individuals and organizations performing independent social compliance audits”.

Full Members: 

An update on new Member Firm applications is provided below including the number of Firms not accepted for membership and those who were unable to meet membership requirements, voluntarily withdrawing or were suspended.

Definition / reference of the terms noted above are available on our APSCA Member Auditors page

IMPORTANT - Member Auditors – 2021 Membership Fees Due

During January, Member Firms were asked to raise 2021 Membership Fees for their auditors. Auditor identified by their Firm as being responsible for their own Membership Fees were required to request an invoice from APSCA.

Any auditor not completing this request will have their Membership moved to “lapsed” on 8 March. A ‘Lapsed’ auditor means the auditor is not an ‘In Good Standing’ Member Auditor and cannot use their APSCA Member Number on a Social Compliance Audit or call themselves an APSCA Member Auditor.  

For more information on status categories/definitions, visit our APSCA Member Auditors page of our website.

Auditors or Firms with questions regarding 2021 membership invoices can contact APSCA at Accounts@theapsca.org.  

CSCA Examination Progress

APSCA continues to make progress towards the roll-out of exams in our 6 new languages.  We have recently uploaded Turkish, Italian, and Portuguese to the existing Chinese and Spanish list of translated resources found in the Resource Library, which supports the upcoming launch.  Both Turkish and Italian Part I questions have been added to the exam site and are going through a verification process. We will keep you informed once the additional languages are ready to be launched.

During February, examination rates remained strong as the total number of completed exams now exceed 6,400 with an overall pass rate of 71% reflecting a 3% decline from January 2021. The decline in pass rates was largely attributable to Part II and Part III examination results which recorded reductions of 5% and 14% respectively. 

APSCA’s President and CEO Rona Starr commented “Overall we are pleased with the continued advancement of our Auditor cohort through the CSCA examination program; particularly as we exceeded 200 Certified Social Compliance Auditors this month. Fluctuation in results are to be expected and as examinations assess the unique competencies of social compliance auditors, the exams reveal opportunities for improvement as a means to cultivate industry credibility and position our Members and Certified Social Compliance Auditors (CSCA) as the trusted professionals of Social Compliance Auditing. With this in mind, it is important we equate successful exam results with the recognition of an Auditors’ requisite skills, knowledge and competencies”

A summary of cumulative exam results can be downloaded below.

For all CSCA Exams (Parts I – III) Auditors must consult with their Member Firm to confirm eligibility to sit each exam. Please ensure you follow the guidance in the Auditor Handbook and notify APSCA prior to enrolling for any exam; failure to follow the guidance, may see the exam disallowed and being unable to sit for a period up to 12 months. 

CSCA Exams Part I and II are available in four Languages (English, Spanish, Simplified & Traditional Chinese) and Part III is available in English, Spanish, Mandarin and Cantonese.   

Please see our website, Resource Library for more information

Auditor Enrollments

As at 25 February 2021, total enrolled Auditors exceeded 4,300 with a summary by Auditor level provided below.

In Case You Missed It – APSCA'S 2020 AGM & Online Stakeholder Event

Facing the Future, Together

APSCA’s 2020 Annual General Meeting & Stakeholder Events were held online during December 7-8 and 14-15 with over 268 registered.  The online event reflected on achievements across APSCA’s five (5) pillars of Validation, Governance, Ethics & Integrity, Communications and Processes and Systems. 

Highlights included recognition of a total of 139 Certified Social Compliance Auditors (CSCAs) along with a year in review of achievements (membership and exams), ethics and integrity, and APSCA progress despite the global challenges and impacts of COVID to our members, community, and industry. 

For more on topics covered, visit our Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Stakeholder Event page for pre-watch videos, our Annual Report, and other materials shared with attendees for a year in review of APSCA’s progress and continued commitment to strengthening industry credibility – and Facing the Future, Together

Any questions, please contact director@theapsca.org.

To better serve our Membership and interested parties, we established a Resource Library on APSCA’s website. The library provides a comprehensive directory of member documents, key dates, exam guides, webinars for ease of access, and more! 

To further enhance this page, we have added:

Key messages will be posted to the new ‘announcements’ section for both general and exam related topics. Announcements will be updated on an ongoing basis. 

Policies (Latest) 
APSCA’s latest policies are available for viewing. The videos provide an overview of policies presented at APSCA’s 2020 AGM & Stakeholder Event, including: Auditor Status, Subcontractors, and Continuous Professional Development (CPD)

Document Translations
Further to our existing member documents, available in English, Spanish, and Chinese (Simplified & Traditional), APSCA is in the process of translating member documents in additional languages to better serve our global membership and community. Additional updates will be provided in due course though we encourage you to regularly review the Resource Page to see the latest documents and translations as they are released.

Visit our website to access the resources.


Check out APSCA’s FAQ page – it has been recently updated.

Don’t see a question / answer you’re looking for? Contact us at director@theapsca.org.

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