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Launch Event: Blockchain-Enabled FairCapacity Platform Showcases Garment Manufacturers' Production Capacity and Labor Performance

New digital platform aims to improve labor practices and working conditions in the apparel sector, while also improving business performance.

SOURCE: Social Accountability International (SAI)

SUMMARY:

SAI will host a virtual launch event for FairCapacity, an innovative blockchain-enabled platform that helps manufacturers improve production planning and advertise capacity, quality, and labor compliance to brands, on January 31, 2022.

DESCRIPTION:

NEW YORK, January 21, 2022 /3BL Media/ – Social Accountability International (SAI), together with technology partner Vertru, has developed FairCapacity, a digital platform with the goal of improving labor practices and working conditions in the apparel sector, while also providing bottom line business benefits. Garment manufacturers in Bangladesh and India can access it at no cost, gaining prioritized access to new digital tools and free training. The virtual launch event for the FairCapacity platform will take place on January 31, 2022, from 6:30-8:30 PM (Bangladesh Standard Time) (7:30-9:30 AM EST), featuring speakers from the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Team Group, the Center for Policy Dialogue (CPD), Bangladesh Institute of Labour Studies (BILS), the BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), and more.

Faced with pressing business demands, manufacturers in apparel supply chains often take on more orders than they can handle, and find themselves at increased risk of excessive overtime, unauthorized subcontracting, forced labor, health and safety issues, employee burnout, absenteeism, and lower productivity. The FairCapacity Platform seeks to address these problems through much improved production capacity measurement and planning, responsible sub-contracting, and better buyer-supplier communication. It lets buyers know in real-time and with confidence if suppliers have the capacity to complete orders at a high quality and in compliance with labor expectations in the allotted time.

The inspiration for FairCapacity comes from innovations like Hotels.com and other platforms that transform how businesses optimize their capacity and attract more customers. Unlike other platforms, FairCapacity will help factories and suppliers meet social compliance requirements, promote responsible subcontracting, and help improve production planning to avoid overextension. “This is a great opportunity for brands to gain deeper insight into operations within their supply chains,” said Louis Vanegas, Senior Director at SAI. “With the Capacity Calculator in the FairCapacity Platform, suppliers will be able to consider meaningful inputs they may not have had the ability to formally quantify before.”

The project also focuses on improving purchasing practices and encouraging sourcing and production processes that enable social compliance, benefit business, and increase consumer confidence, ultimately benefitting the bottom line.

Even for those that do not have serious concerns about excessive work hours or unauthorized subcontracting in their supply chains, there are still many ways buyers can benefit from this project, including:

  • Increased transparency from suppliers
  • Increased visibility into typical procurement challenges and improved ability to mitigate long-term and short-term performance risks
  • Expanded ability to fill orders through better production planning and capacity utilization
  • Ability to view supplier commitments to compliance (view certifications, associations, and initiatives in which they take part)
  • Enhanced ability to work together with suppliers

“FairCapacity encourages increased transparency, responsible subcontracting and supplier control over their available capacity,” said Stephanie Wilson, Associate Director of Innovation and Partnerships at SAI. “With these mechanisms in place, buyers can demonstrate their due diligence on forced labor and other labor performance risks even at lower tiers of the supply chain.”

For more information on how your suppliers can join this innovative platform, please contact Stephanie Wilson, swilson@sa-intl.org. Find more details about the virtual event, including a link to register, on the event website.

The FairCapacity Platform is part of SAI’s Supplier Capacity Program, which aims to improve transparency and working conditions in the global apparel supply chain. SAI began the Supplier Capacity Program in Bangladesh in 2019, with the support of the European Commission, and extended the program into India in 2020, with the support of the Global Fund to End Modern Slavery, UK Aid, and Norad.

KEYWORDS: supply chain, digital innovation, blockchain, Apparel Sector, Forced labor, responsible business, Human Rights, labor, CSR, Social Accountability International (SAI)

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