APSCA Newsletter June 2023

July 5, 2023

To enhance the professionalism and credibility of the individuals and organizations performing independent social compliance audits
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APSCA Newsletter – June 2023

Welcome to the APSCA June 2023 Newsletter! The past couple of months has seen the Team working to implement the Funding model, which supports APSCA’s 2030 strategy, and additional new launches within Continuous Professional Development (CPD). We have exciting events scheduled for the remainder of 2023 which are highlighted in this issue, and a few updates from our exam and ethics teams.




It is with great sadness that we announce our Business Manager, Julie Shaw, will be retiring at the end of July 2023. Julie has been an absolutely vital part of the APSCA team since its inception in 2016. Over the past 7 years, Julie has had a significant role in the successful operation of APSCA across multiple domains, having a hand in policy and procedure development, data system processes and enhancement, and exam functions, just to name a few. She has provided crucial support to all members of the team, always finding time to offer her guidance, encouragement and expertise, gained over her illustrious career. 

We are thrilled for Julie, as she enters this new and exciting chapter of life that comes with retirement. With this feeling of excitement also comes feelings of sadness, as we bid farewell to someone who has, without a doubt, been a crucial part of the APSCA foundation.

Thank you, Julie, for your dedication to APSCA over these past 7 years. The APSCA team and the entire community surrounding this organisation, are incredibly lucky to have worked alongside you. On behalf of APSCA, thank you, good luck & all the best for a wonderful and fantastic retirement!






Please join us in welcoming three new members to the APSCA Team,
Stephanie Ragan, Silas Gilders and Meg Crawford!


Stephanie Ragan – Director of Code & Compliance

With a wealth of experience in compliance and ethics management, Stephanie brings valuable expertise to our organization. Prior to joining us, Stephanie excelled in offshore petroleum EPCI, overseeing compliance and ethics, and provided consulting services in trade compliance and corporate ethics program development. She also possesses extensive knowledge in logistics management, project cargo, and freight forwarding. Stephanie’s approach to compliance management emphasizes fostering a speak-up culture, thorough due diligence, and meticulous investigations to maintain industry-wide integrity. Holding certifications in export compliance, ethics, and FCPA expertise, Stephanie is a member of esteemed professional associations. Her previous international roles have given her a deep understanding of the challenges faced by global organizations. Beyond her professional accomplishments, Stephanie actively volunteers for B.I.G. Love Cancer Care Services and serves as a dedicated committee person with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. We are thrilled to have Stephanie on board and look forward to her valuable contributions.

Stephanie can be reached at Stephanie.ragan@theapsca.org

Silas Gilders (they/them) – Data Administrator  

We are pleased to welcome Silas Gilders to the APSCA team as our new Data Administrator. Silas joined APSCA in May 2023, replacing our Data Administrator, Josh Morris. Silas is handling auditor enrolments, associations, dissociations, responding to general email enquiries, Member Auditor profile updates and supporting CPD. They will be working closely with our Business Management team.

Silas can be reached at dataadministrator@theapsca.org



Meg Crawford – Business Manager

We are happy to announce that Meg will be taking on the role of Business Manager, replacing Julie Shaw. Meg will be commencing with APSCA on July 10, training closely with Julie until her retirement late July. Meg brings extensive experience in different fields, having previously worked within travel, mining, and the Government space. Her main passions involve clean data and change management. In addition to taking over areas previously held by Julie, Meg will be assisting with CPD, and quarterly and monthly reporting. Welcome aboard Meg, we are very excited to have you!
Meg will be reachable at meg.crawford@theapsca.org from July 10.


  Farewell to two APSCA team members, Josh Morris and Emily Chen.  

Josh Morris, Data Administrator

Josh joined APSCA in 2021 as Data Administrator and immediately proved a valuable asset to the team. As he leaves APSCA in pursuit of new career opportunities, we would like to take the time to thank him for his tireless efforts in maintaining our data system, having spearheaded various new functionalities in order to streamline working systems and maximize efficiency.
We wish Josh all the best in his career progression and are certain he will thrive in his future endeavours and form an integral part of any team, just as he has among the APSCA team.

Thank you for all your hard work and commitment to APSCA, Josh!


Emily Chen, former Compliance Analyst

Emily provided valuable support to the Ethics Team since starting at APSCA in October, 2022. Emily played an important role as Compliance Analyst in assisting with ethics investigations and data triangulation.

We would like to wish Emily all the best with her professional endeavours and give a big thank you for her work during her time on the APSCA team!






As announced in May 2023, starting July 1, 2023, the APSCA Social Compliance Audit Fee/ APSCA Audit Fee (AAF) (US$15) will be applied to Social Compliance Audits for the following four programs:

  • amfori (BSCI)
  • Sedex (SMETA)
  • Social Accountability International/SAI (SA8000)
  • Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP)

The AAF will deliver genuine benefits to the global social compliance audit profession, enabling the delivery of our 2030 Strategy. The Strategy is separated into three pillars identifying strategic objectives and supporting goals for each.

At APSCA, work has already begun toward these objectives and goals, laying the groundwork, detailed planning and early-stage deliverables as timelines and resource requirements are mapped out for the second half of 2023 and beyond.

Enhance the Professionalism and credibility of APSCA Member Firms and Auditors.

  • Strengthen the firm application and ongoing Member Firm oversight processes to validate information and ensure compliance to the APSCA code before and after Membership received.
  • Increase efficiencies within the member auditor and member firms’ disciplinary process while ensuring credibility and integrity of the disciplinary process is upheld.

Become an association of and for Social Compliance Auditors.

  • Finalize the process for Internal auditor / organizations to join APSCA.
  • Establish a CSCA Council, which leads to representation on the SAB and/or Executive Board


APSCA to increase market adoption and capacity levels amongst stakeholders through communication and marketing strategies that articulates social auditing as a required and valued profession.

  • Implement a process to bring auditors into the profession.
  • Working with Members to develop an academy which would focus on supporting training for new auditors.


Build awareness across the profession, industry, and society.

  • Provide Members and Partners with the opportunity to influence and develop the work within APSCA.

We continue to focus upon the priorities of:

  • Developing a pathway to attract new social compliance auditors into the profession.
  • Enhanced user experience through improved practices, including the exam and training process, and facilitating greater Member engagement.
  • Expanded global reach and influence for the social compliance profession, to enable input into key and emerging issues for government and civil society.

These extra benefits require a step change for our organization.

New funding is critical to allow us to build the organization our profession needs and deserves, and to get on the front foot with all stakeholders, so we can face tomorrow’s challenges with confidence.
AAF implementation has been discussed extensively with stakeholders, APSCA Members and staff, and will follow a phased-in implementation process:

  • Phase 1 July 1, 2023, AAF will apply to audits conducted during this period for supporting programs, (BSCI, SMETA, WRAP, SA8000).
  • Phase 2 October 1, 2023, the AAF will be expanded to include all programs.
  • Phase 3 January 1, 2024, APSCA will introduce tiered membership fees for APSCA Member Firms.

To learn more about APSCA’s 2030 Strategy please listen to Episode 8 of The APSCA Podcast as APSCA President &CEO Rona Starr takes us through the vision for APSCA moving forward  
For additional reflections upon APSCA’s history, organizational structure, vision and mission and future direction in line with the 2030 Strategy,  watch the new “About Us” Video

To read more about the AAF click here.





 May 2023 live Q&A – recap 

At the end of May, we held our second live Q&A event virtually across 2 sessions. In these sessions, we discussed the new 2030 strategy and funding model, as well as topics related to Governance, Membership, CPD, and Exams. We would like to thank everyone who registered for and attended the events. Across the two sessions, we saw roughly a 50% engagement rate with available polls and questions submitted via the Slido platform. Auditor as well as Firm participation is what drives these sessions and we were pleased to see so many engaging and sending us their questions.

 We have finalised two FAQ documents for this Q&A event, which are available here.

 June B&C Member Calls – recap 

On June 20 and 21 2023, APSCA staff and Executive Board Representatives hosted two Member Firm calls for APSCA B and C Category Member Firms to support various time zones. The calls provided Member Firms with an opportunity to receive updates from APSCA over various topics such as Strategy/Funding, Part III Alt Language deadline, phasing out of APSCA RA Level, planned Data System enhancements and the Annual Meeting of Member and Stakeholders 2023.
The calls were well attended and mark the 3rd APSCA Member Call / meetings held during 2023.
Recordings of the meetings have been circulated to attendees as well as follow up documents summarizing questions raised during and following the meeting which were relevant to Member Firms.

We look forward to connecting with the Member Firms once again in Q3.

 Welcome New Members 

APSCA is pleased to welcome our new APSCA Provisional Member Firms:
ASPIRATA Auditing Testing and Certification PTY LTD
Helmsman Quality & Technology Services Co., Ltd
IDFL Laboratory and Institute Inc.
Stantec Environmental Engineering (Shanghai) Co., Ltd.
VJN Global Solutions

Please welcome them to APSCA!





Planning to attend the 2023 AMM in Atlanta Georgia, USA. Please take this short survey and let us know if you plan to attend in person or virtually!
Once again, thank you to all who participated in our May Q&A sessions and our B & C Member calls. Member input is always valued and assist us as we endeavour to provide support to Auditors and Firms.





We have made some minor changes to section 9.1 of the APSCA Competency Framework. These changes are reflected in questions within the APSCA Exam Process.

We also launched our Part I & II Exam Syllabus which aims to provide greater clarity for Member Auditors and Member Firms about the content of the APSCA Part I & II exams.
We welcome feedback on this document. If you wish to provide any feedback, please email director@theapsca.org  





The exam team has a message from Calendly regarding Google’s new anti-spam policies, which may impact how your Calendly meeting will show up on your calendar.

Google Calendar will now only add meetings to an invitee’s calendar automatically if the sender has previously interacted with the invitee in Gmail. If you use Google Calendar and you have never interacted with Calendly by email, you must click ‘I know the sender’ and ‘yes’ to the invite for the meeting to be added to your calendar. That is all that is required!
An example of this is displayed in the below image. As you can see, a notice will appear alerting you that this meeting invite has been sent from someone you have never interacted with.
Simple click ‘I know the sender’ and accept the invite.

Some additional reminders from the exam team:

  • As at October 1, RA will no longer be an available Auditor level, in line with the RA phase-out.
  • If you are trying to re-sit a Part III exam, please schedule for the first available date, and continue to check Calendly regularly in case an earlier date becomes available. If you do find an earlier date, please use the reschedule/cancellation link on your original Calendly confirmation email. Incorrect rescheduling places you at risk of losing all exam dates previously booked.
  • DO NOT reschedule your exam directly with ProctorU as this does not alert the interviewer of the change, meaning when you arrive at the exam your interviewer and translator (if being used) will not be there. The exam will then be cancelled, and you will be charged. 
  • When booking in Calendly, please use the same email as that listed on your ProctorU account.

Finally, in your exam preparation, make sure you read the How to Book document before arriving at the exam and click through all of the links contained in this document. Additionally, you should have read through the Part III Exam Guide to have an understanding of how scoring works and what the interviewers are looking for to award points. Other essential preparatory materials include the What to Expect video and episode 7 of the APSCA podcast, all of which can be found in the Resource Library.





Hello from the Ethics Team!

We’d like to take a moment to introduce our team and remind everyone what the Ethics Team does to support Member Firms and Member Auditors to help achieve APSCA’s mission to professionalize social compliance auditing. 

Our Compliance Manager, Emma Youngman, has been associated with APSCA for several years. In her current role, Emma is the front line for reported ethical concerns and liaises with collaborative parties and Member Firms for investigations and best practices. Additionally, she supports Member inquiries and outreach to aid with any ethical concerns. Stephanie, who was introduced at the beginning of this issue of the newsletter, has joined the APSCA ethics team as the Director of Code and Compliance. Stephanie will lead the team in ensuring that our Code and Standards of Professional Conduct, policies, and procedures meet the needs of APSCA Members and support all ethical investigations, as well as leading Member Firm investigations, and focusing on measuring program effectiveness.

In 2023, the Ethics team is dedicated to bringing more transparency to our Members. We have confidence that through a better understanding of our investigation process and with additional transparency around the functions of the ethics team, Members will feel more comfortable when reporting issues. The cornerstone of best ethical practices is accountability. The APSCA Ethics Team relies on whistleblowers and reporters to advise when there are potential problems and ethical violations occurring in the workplace. Reporting concerns is every Member’s responsibility. Please reach out to your APSCA Ethics Team with questions, if ever in doubt.  We hope to see enhanced engagement with our surveys and increased communication outreach throughout the remainder of 2023 so that we can better serve all APSCA Members.  

 Update on the APSCA Disciplinary Board Activity – June 2023 

The disciplinary board heard 4 cases.   

  1. False Auditing and Recordkeeping – 2-Month Suspension 
  2. Recordkeeping & Transparency with APSCA – 2-Month Suspension 
  3. Harassment – Revocation 
  4. Bribery & Corruption – Revocation 

**To report any concerns or potential ethics violations, reach out to ethics@theapsca.org** 

Speak Up – Why it’s important to report issues when they arise:

  • It’s part of your commitment to APSCA. The Code and Standards of Professional Conduct, signed at the time of joining APSCA, outlines that every Member is responsible for reporting unethical behavior. 
  • Speaking up empowers you to tell your truth and benefits the profession by preventing continuing issues from spreading, which affects our ability to do our job with integrity and pride. 
  • Demonstrating your commitment to best practices in social compliance auditing, and your support for APSCA may even inspire quiet colleagues to speak up in the face of corruption, too. 





CPD On-Demand 2023 has been launched.


The following trainings are available in the months of July & August.

  • July 6th-7th SAS – An LQRA Company – CSR Auditor Training (annual) in person, 20% discount being offered for APSCA Auditors, register here, APSCA Course Code SAS-001 (CPD 8h)
  • July 10th WIRE – Conducting Worker Interviews, online, more information here, APSCA Course Code WI-001 (CPD 8h)
  • July 11th WIRE – Grievance Mechanisms & Social Dialogue online, more information here, APSCA Course Code WI-003 (CPD 8h)
  • July 17th _ 21st Social Accountability International SA8000 Introduction & Basic Auditor Training (HCMC, Vietnam), for more information click here, APSCA Course Code SAI-001 (CPD 36h)
  • August 4th CASPIUM – US Department of Labor Regulations (English) hybrid, more information here, APSCA Course Code CAS-001 (CPD 8h),
  • August 7th WIRE – Conducting Worker Interviews online, more information here, APSCA Course Code WI-001 (CPD 8h),
  • August 8th WIRE – Gender Sensitive Auditing – an introduction online, more information here, APSCA Course Code WI-002 (CPD 8h),
  • August 11th CASPIUM – US Environmental, Health & Safety Laws hybrid, more information here, APSCA Course Code CAS-001 (CPD 8h),
  • August 16th-18th Social Accountability International – SA8000 Advanced Lead Auditor Training (Mexico City), in person, more information here, APSCA Course Code SAI-002 (CPD 24h)
  • August 21st Social Accountability International – SA8000 Introduction & Basic Auditor Training (Mexico), in person, more information here, APSCA Course Code SAI-001 (CPD 36h)
  • August 28th Social Accountability International – SA8000 Introduction & Basic Auditor Training (New York City, USA), in person, more information here, APSCA Course Code SAI-001 (CPD 36h)


World Day Against Child Labor

June 12th was the World Day Against Child Labor. As we reflect upon this issue and the various forms in which it still exists in the world, we encourage our Members to engage with available resources which explore child labor in a modern context. One great resource, in particular, comes from episode 1 of Rachelle Jackson’s podcast, which is available to listen to here.

We are proud of the work being done by APSCA Members to combat child labor globally, in line with section 9.2 of the Competency Framework. There may be a ways to go before child labor can be considered eradicated, though by spreading awareness of this issue we are able to make steps towards this goal.

For more information and resources regarding child labor from the International Labor Organization (ILO), click here



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 





Looking for Auditors? APSCA is here to help!

Let APSCA apply the benefits of our global network to your search for new Auditors.
Just tag us (#APSCA) on your LinkedIn job postings for Social Compliance Auditors or send job postings directly to us and we can share them on social media.

We are here to help, supporting APSCA Member Firms, Supporter Brands & Retailers, and Collaborative Programs that we work with, in their ongoing efforts to attract and retain Social Compliance Auditor talent.
We would welcome your feedback – please forward your suggestions to:  director@theapsca.org
















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Our mailing address is:
Association of Professional Social Compliance Auditors
1747 Pennsylvania Avenue, Suite 1000,
Washington DC 20006 USA


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​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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