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February 14, 2022

Higg launches social benchmarking in industry first

Sustainability insights platform Higg has released new social and labour performance benchmarks for consumer goods manufacturing.

By Beth Wright

Higg says it is the first to offer complete performance measurement for manufacturing facilities across carbon, water, waste, and now working conditions.

Since most environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) solutions only provide benchmarks on certain environmental factors, Higg says its advancement offers a more comprehensive way for businesses to improve their impact.

Higg users can compare the environmental and social impact within their own value chain and against industry peers. This will give businesses a new perspective on their own performance and inform strategic decisions to meet sustainability goals, it adds.

“To create better conditions for workers in the fashion industry, businesses need data they can trust and Higg is helping make this possible by providing industry access to the Social & Labor Convergence Program (SLCP)’s Converged Assessment Framework (CAF),” explains Janet Mensink, executive director of the SLCP. “The CAF is a widely accepted tool designed to reduce audit fatigue and increase facility ownership of their social and labour data. By offering additional benchmarking services, Higg will help users see how their efforts compare against others and will spotlight opportunities for improvement.”

Higg users can now build comprehensive ESG programmes using data from their facilities or compare to others in Higg’s network. The resulting information helps identify low-performing areas and develop improvement plans. Businesses can then measure progress as changes are made. Additionally, filtering of manufacturing facilities is available using attributes such as industry or country to help brands manage factory compliance based on country-specific labor requirements.

The update helps the consumer goods industry meet market expectations by placing social impact alongside environmental metrics for a more comprehensive view of performance across the entire value chain.

 “We’re innovating for a world where everything is made with the lowest environmental impact and greatest social benefit possible. To do this, businesses must understand the impacts across their value chain. Choosing only one or two areas to invest in won’t move us to where we need to be. Benchmarking is an important part of solving this problem. Comparing against industry peers and identifying specific areas that need action gives businesses the information they need to speed up their progress,” says Higg CEO Jason Kibbey.

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