APSCA Newsletter April 2022

April 1, 2022

To enhance the professionalism and credibility of the individuals and organizations performing independent social compliance audits
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APSCA Newsletter – April 2022

During April, APSCA saw the number of Certified Social Compliance Auditors (CSCA) pass 1,500. Congratulations to all our CSCAs for your hard work and diligence in the APSCA certification process.
 
For those working through the exams, remember the online Practice Exams are available. APSCA has identified an increase of 20% in the exam pass rate for Part I & Part II since the introduction of the Practice Exams in early Q1.
 
APSCA is also pleased to announce the APSCA Part III Exam is now available with live translations in 240 different languages. More information below.
 
In this issue:
  • UN Day of Observance – World Day for Safety and Health at Work.
  • APSCA Competency Framework moves to V6
  • The APSCA Podcast launch on Podbean
  • Auditor Bulletin launches to improve direct APSCA communications with our Member Auditors
  • Newsletter frequency change
 
Further highlights are provided below.
 
Also in this this issue:

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UN Days of Observance

Earlier this year, APSCA began posting about APSCA Comptency Framework relevant UN Days of Observance on our social media accounts. When asked why we mark International Days we point to the UN’s explanation of this: 

International days and weeks are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and celebrate and reinforce humanity’s achievements. The existence of international days predates the establishment of the United Nations, but the UN has embraced them as a powerful advocacy tool. 
1.
 
1 https://www.un.org/en/observances/earth-day



April 28 marks World Day for Safety and Health at Work. This day is intended to focus global attention on the need to create a safety culture in all workplaces focused upon preventing occupational accidents and diseases. APSCA can do its part by encouraging social dialogue on this important topic and by supporting our auditors in their work. Section 9.10 of APSCA Competency Framework.
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We are excited to announce the soft launch of APSCA’s official podcast “The APSCA Podacst”. In an effort to bring you into the conversations we are having here at APSCA and discuss all things social compliance,  we are releasing episodes that will be valuable to all involved in the industry. Find below the first three episodes hosted on Podbean. We welcome your feedback as we prepare to release them to distribution services (such as Spotify or Apple Music) early May.
 
Ep 1: Introduction/ Trailer  Find out what you can expect to hear in our podcasts when they will be posted, and the reason for this new feature!

Ep 2: Debunking the Myth – the Phase out of the Registered Auditor Level  Are you wondering why APSCA is phasing out the Registered Auditor Level? Our CEO, Rona Starr, explains everything you need to know in under 4 minutes.

Ep 3: In Conversation with Ian Spaulding and Alex Nasr  Earlier this year, APSCA’s  Director of Code and Compliance Alex Nasr sat down in Hong Kong with Ian Spaulding the founder and CEO of Elevate to discuss compliance in the context of a company’s maturity.  This will be the first of many ethics focused conversations as we speak to industry experts regarding systemic issues, challenges and milestones throughout our journey to professionalise the industry.


Please send feedback to media@theapsca.org

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In March, APSCA’s Rona Starr spoke with Kathleen Sobieralski Accounting Professor at the University of Maryland Global Campus, at the US Nation’s Capital Chapter of The Association of Accountants and Financial Professionals in Business webinar on the topic Social Compliance: Planning and Auditing. The IMA attendees were fascinated to hear how industry challenges lead to the birth of the social compliance auditing profession. They also engaged on a forward facing discussion about the complex skill sets required by social compliance auditors and how APSCA will help the industry answer the need to attract new professionals to this space.



Are you or your organization planning an event, conference or podcast regarding Social Audit, Human Rights Due Diligience, ESG, or other APSCA  relevant topic?
Would you like to have APSCA participate? Please get in touch with us at Media@theapsca.org
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APSCA Auditor Social Media Guidance

In March, The APSCA Code and Compliance team published APSCA guidance to Member Auditors regarding social media. The Guidance reminds members of their confidentiality and professional considerations when using social media relative to their site work in social compliance audits.
The Guidance should be read in conjunction with the following documents which can be found on 
APSCAs website.


ASCA Social Media Guidance

Code and Standards of Professional Conduct

APSCA Competency Framework

Use of APSCA Member Auditor Number Guide

APSCA Glossary of Terms

APSCA Disciplinary Framework and Procedures

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APSCA Study Tools
  • As noted in the introduction to this newsletter, APSCA Part I & Part II Exam pass rates have substantially improved since the launch of the Practice Exams in early 2022.
  • If you or your team members are preparing to sit the Part I or Part II exam and looking for some extra resources, please take a look at the Practice Exam
  • The practice exams allow test takers to familiarize themselves with the format of the questions and answers for the first two exams. They also enable test takers to practice using right-click translate/ technology-based translation tools which are supported for Part I & Part II exams. Instructions are available here.
 


CSCA Exams and Languages:
Preferred Exam Languages for Auditors?

In January 2022 Member Auditors provided their annual consent to APSCA thru the Auditor’s APSCA online account (My Account). At that time, Member Auditors were also asked to confirm the language they wanted to sit their exams in. There are many APSCA Member Auditors who are advanced in multiple languages. The information was requested to support projections with our translation partner and also used to inform the deadline of the individual auditor in sitting their exams.  If you or a member of your team have a question about your APSCA Exam languages, please contact Data.administrator@theapsca.org
 


 
Exam Languages by Exam Part
Parts I & II Exams are available in 10 languages (English, Spanish, Simplified & Traditional Chinese, Italian, Portuguese, Turkish, Bangla, Thai, and Vietnamese). APSCA can accommodate exams in languages supported by right click translate technology (92 additional languages).

We piloted the use of right click translate technology in the exam process for an extended period of time and would like to remind Member Firms and Member Auditors that this capability is available. Instructions are available here.




Part III is available in English, Spanish, Mandarin and Cantonese.
APSCA, in partnership with a live translation partner we offer the APSCA Part III Exam in 240 languages.  We are excited to work together with them to improve the process for our Member Auditors sitting the Part III exam. For more information about our translation partner, please click here. For more information on how to book an APSCA Part III Exam, please contact: exams@theapsca,org

 QUESTIONS?
Contact: exams@theapsca.org



Exam Eligibility
For all CSCA Exams (Parts I – III) Auditors must consult with their Member Firm to confirm eligibility to sit each exam and obtain information on the 2022 exam fees. Please follow the Guidance in the updated Auditor Handbook V12 and work with your Member Firm or APSCA prior to scheduling/sitting any exam.
 
Exam Costs
APSCA Exams prices are listed on our Schedule of Fees

Should you have any questions or require clarification on the exam eligibility process, contact us at Director@theapsca.org 
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    APSCA Registered Auditor Exam Deadlines   



 
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2022 CPD IS mandatory and WILL impact Auditor status for 2023.

If you are an Auditor, please review the APSCA CPD policy and start planning your CPD relevant training.
When you have completed your training, please submit the training to APSCA through the Auditor’s APSCA online account (My Account) using the Detailed instructions.



   Are You a Training Provider?   

We welcome Member Firms, Collaborative Programs Training providers, partners, and affiliates to participate in this initiative by submitting an expression of interest form to have their social compliance auditing-related learning recognized as part of APSCA’s CPD program.

Recognized courses are assigned a specific quantity of CPD hours that Member Auditors can note on their APSCA profile as going towards meeting the annual requirement. Courseware can range from online training to webinars, conferences, workshops and more. You can submit your learning materials for consideration by completing our expression of interest form. This quarter, we will issue further Guidance on CPD to help Member Auditors and Member Firms meet this requirement effectively in 2022.

For questions, please contact cpd@theapsca.org.
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In April, APSCA released the updated APSCA Competency Framework.
Now at Version 6, the revised Competency Framework reflects updates relating to the Jan 2022 phasing out of the Registered Auditor (RA) Level. The document went through a general clean up and formatting update. In several instances, static text was replaced by links to other documents (example the APSCA Code of Standards and Professional Conduct). Section 3 of the Competency Framework was also cleaned up, pointing to a more streamlined single pathway to exam eligibility and certification.



The updated Competency Framework is also ready to use with right click translate so that users may use their browser level translation to read the document in languages other than English.
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Announcing APSCA’s newest communication stream



In an effort to ensure that information impacting Auditors is being communicated to them efficiently and effectively,  APSCA is launching The Auditor Bulletin . The world is a complicated place with ever changing landscapes, Member Auditor specific news will now come straight to their inbox. Topics will include exam due dates, updated information about exam languages, booking instructions, emerging issues, events, opportunities to connect with our Podcast and focused information on Continuous Professional Development (CPD) and more. Starting in late April APSCA Member Auditors will begin receiving the new direct to Member Auditor communications from the APSCA team.

   APSCA Support Statement   

Is your organization interested in voicing your support of APSCA?

The Organizations providing support via the APSCA Support Statement  continues to grow.  These organizations have provided their permission to use their name / logo which you can view on our website:

https://www.theapsca.org/support-apsca/

If you would like to offer your support and have your organization’s name/ logo placed on our website, please let us know by contacting director@theapsca.org.



  
Newsletter Frequency Change   

Effective April 2022, the frequency of the APSCA Newsletter will be changing.  The APSCA newsletter will now be issued every 6-8 weeks instead of monthly. We value your time and attention and would like to ensure that our communications are useful to our subscribers. Sometimes, less is more.
If you have feedback about this change or any other part of the newsletter, please let us know at director@theapsca.org.

 

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 REPORTING AN INTEGRITY ISSUE 
 

If you wish to report an action by one of our Members (Firms or Auditors) which may be considered a violation of APSCA’s Code and Standards of Professional Conduct, email our Ethics Manager at Ethics@theapsca.org 

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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 exam preparation and more! 

The APSCA resource library layout will be changing in the coming months.  
Watch this newsletter and our website for more details and changes.
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Our monthly newsletter now reaches over 4,000 subscribers each month! 
We encourage our Member Firms to have their auditors subscribe to APSCA’s newsletter to stay up to date with APSCA Happenings by clicking 
here. Further, if you have a friend or colleague that may be interested in APSCA, please share this newsletter with them via the link below.
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