Pacific Brands upholds the same high standards across all sourcing markets when managing its third party suppliers.
In order to make a real, sustainable and positive difference, the Company holds itself and its suppliers, accountable to these standards.
We act professionally, diligently and ethically and we expect the same of every supplier, which is mirrored in our Supplier and Manufacturer Code of Conduct. The Company has a program in place to ensure its suppliers abide by all local laws and meet the requirements of our ethical sourcing policies. We actively promote and foster an open dialogue around any issues that arise during our relationship – it is only through this that we can effect meaningful change.
In order to manage on-going supplier performance, Pacific Brands maintains a proactive audit and compliance program centred on worker welfare and factory working conditions. In addition to the audits, there are other continuous improvement initiatives as we believe that compliance in itself will not achieve sustainable change. Examples include, a training agenda, problem identification techniques and capacity building. The Company has full access to supplier facilities, factory workers, employee and safety records as required under the Pacific Brands Supplier and Manufacturer Code of Conduct.
The audit program is led internally by a team of subject matter experts based out of China and active on the ground. The team is also supported by independent third party specialist social compliance auditors TÜV SÜD & SGS. Pacific Brands social compliance function reports through to the Company’s Group Risk and Assurance Manager, who reports into the Chief Financial Officer. The Board reviews and approves the ethical sourcing policies and maintains oversight of supplier performance under our program.
In addition to the audit program, in 2013 we started dedicating resources to drive initiatives such as deploying LEAN manufacturing into targeted areas of our supply chain and other training programs focused on specific problem areas of the Base Code. This process is focused on real product manufacturing efficiency outcomes such as improved communication, improved order management throughout the production cycle and enhanced problem solving techniques to minimise bottlenecks and reduce lead times. Each of these can have a direct positive correlation to working hours and working conditions. We are seeing progress as our targeted LEAN Supplier Program is being monitored and tracked, including incremental improvements in supplier productivity and working conditions.