Latest AIM-PROGRESS survey on Responsible Sourcing in FMCG

AIM-PROGRESS members continue to demonstrate progress on responsible sourcing reveals the latest responsible sourcing survey by the initiative, now in its 5th edition. 27% of partlcipating companies report their programmes are ‘Mature’ or ‘Advanced’ in 2015, an 11% increase over 2014. To support this progress, members are resourcing programmes with increasing budgets and more employees, and report more senior-level oversight than in previous years. Most members have commitments or targets, and track input metrics such as the number of supplier assessments completed. More mature members also track impact KPIs.


In 2015, AIM-PROGRESS members were doing more to integrate responsible sourcing (RS) expectations into procurement processes: the number of members that have RS expectations as part of supplier authorization has increased by 16% to 32 companies. More mature programs are more likely to integrate RS expectations into buyer or supplier incentives.


Companies are conducting more supplier ethical audits and report higher rates of effective remediation in 2015. Over 17,700 audits were conducted in 2015, an increase of 26% compared to 2014. Members plan to conduct more audits in 2016. More suppliers required corrective action in 2015 as compared to the previous two years, but closure rates are higher in 2015, with 86% of suppliers closing their corrective action plans by the end of the year. Over 350,000 workers were impacted by corrective actions implemented in the workplace, which is slightly less than in the previous year, but may be due to a different reporting base .

Responsible sourcing continues to be strongly influenced by the international Human Rights agenda. 76% of members indicated that they are currently implementing or planning to implement the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, a 10% increase over 2014. In addition to the influence of new regulations, such as the UK Modern Slavery Act, companies highlight forced labor and human trafficking as emerging areas of concern in their supply chains. About half of members integrate human trafficking content in codes of conduct and offer suppliers access to a grievance mechanism.
Members continue to derive value from AIM-PROGRESS membership, and programme maturity correlates with the number of years a company has been a member of AIM-PROGRESS. Members cite opportunities to share best practices, benchmark against peers, gain external credibility, and access the mutual recognition programme as the most valuable aspects of AIM-PROGRESS.
On the downside, challenges remain for supply chain capability building - a key to increasing maturity on RS - with companies still concentrating on internal training, rather than on supplier education. Also, more engagement is necessary to drive the human rights agenda, in particular the fight against human trafficking and supplier access to grievance mechanisms. Impact KPIs should be established not only by more mature companies but by all AIM-PROGRESS members. AIM-PROGRESS is conducting a project to equip members with the necessary methodology and tools.
An executive summary of the survey findings is available to interested readers.