Sustainable Impact Partnership Program

We work closely with our business partners around the world to make sure we produce affordable, quality products that meet our high environmental and social standards.

Our designs are produced by suppliers that are not owned by us. Therefore, it’s essential we work towards the same ambitions and have the same mindset to ensure compliance with our standards, drive performance and achieve impact.

Through our Sustainable Impact Partnership Programme (SIPP) we support our business partners to raise their environmental and social performance. We reward high-achieving and responsible suppliers with training opportunities and long-term contracts. We want each supplier to take ownership of their sustainability agenda to drive environmental and social progress through their business and across our whole industry.

Our suppliers must sign our Sustainability Commitment. This summarises the areas we work on to make our supply chain more sustainable. It covers transparency and collaboration, supply chain due diligence, impact on people and the environment. SIPP assesses our suppliers’ performance and their level of compliance with our Sustainability Commitment. The main components include minimum requirements verification, self-assessment, verification, capacity building, grievance mechanisms and workers voice, dealing with incidents and violations.

Minimum requirements

Before starting any relationship with a supplier, we conduct a minimum requirement assessment. All suppliers must pass this assessment before we place an order with them. We then conduct regular follow up assessments to ensure our minimum requirements continue to be met.


Through self-assessment our suppliers report annual performance data and management system indicators, which helps us to understand their readiness and resilience.

We support industry-wide collaboration tools that avoid duplication and promote transparency. This is why we use the Higg facility tools, developed by Cascale (previously named Sustainable Apparel Coalition or SAC), to assess performance and management systems in SIPP.
We were one of the first brands to incorporate both the Facility Environmental Module (FEM) and the Facility Social Labour Module (FSLM) into our supply chain sustainability programme. Today 100% of the manufacturing factories making our fashion and shoes are covered under SIPP, and over 400 processing factories and fabric mills report their performance in FEM.

Read more about Cascale and the Higg Index.


Our Suppliers conduct a self-assessment using FEM and FSLM, which is then verified by a Cascale approved third-party. This ensures that all parts of the modules are accurately completed and assures credibility.

The latest verified submission is used if a supplier has submitted verified modules in the last twelve months. Exception is the Facility Profile section where the most up to-date facility information will be used.

FSLM helps manufacturers, brands, and retailers understand the social and labour impacts of their value chain, reduce audit fatigue, and make proactive improvements It uses the Social & Labor Convergence Program (SLCP) assessment tool and process, asking the same questions from the SLCP Data Collection Tool and following the SLCP verification protocol. FSLM is an Accredited Host, which means they enable the SLCP assessment process on their platform and provide additional data analytics and sharing services to users such as brands, standard holders, and manufacturers. 

To see more information on the verification processes for FEM please refer to FEM Verification Protocol.

In the table below, the participation and verification share of supplier factories included in FEM and FSLM are summarised.

Supplier factories participation and verification in FEM/FSLM202120222023
Tier 1 supplier factories participating in FEM (number and %) 894 858744 (70%)
Tier 1 third party verifications for FEM (and % of those participating) 878 (98%) 849 (99%)728 (98%)
Tier 2 supplier factories participating in FEM (number and %) 337 509530 (56%)
Tier 2 third party verifications for FEM (and % of those participating) 329 (98%) 505 (99%) 519 (98%)
Tier 1 supplier factories participating in FSLM (number and %)883 843 (66%) 876 (68%)
Tier 2 supplier factories participating in FSLM (number and %)332 501 (52%) 442 (61%)
Tier 1 third-party verifications for FSLM (and % of those participating)850 (96%) 843 (100%) 790 (90%)
Tier 2 third-party verifications for FSLM (and % of those participating)311 (94%) 501 (100%) 415 (94%)

For more information on the definition of tier 1 and 2 factories in our production supply chain visit our supply chain page.
Only suppliers that we actively work with and whose sustainability grading is approved are included in Higg reporting scope. For suppliers not included, please see below section “How we work with factories outside the Higg scope”.

Note that factories operating in countries with a Better Work Presence and factories wishing to enrol in Better Work for the purposes of data sharing via SLCP, will be able to do so according to the agreed rollout schedule in each Better Work country. In such cases, they should indicate their preference in the Better Work Supplier Portal. Enrolled facilities can complete a Better Work assessment and share their data through the SLCP Gateway.

In Cambodia all our factories are part of Better Factories Cambodia (BFC). BFC conducts regular workplace assessments at exporting garment factories, using checklists and criteria that determine compliance with the Cambodian Labour Law and the ILO’s core conventions.

Factories completing Better Work assessments only are excluded from FSLM verifications shares in the above table. This only includes factories where verification is finalised. Read more about Better Work

Capacity building

Verified assessments, including annual surveys, regular performance data and Cascale tools, are used to identify supplier compliance, impacts, risks, strengths and weaknesses. This information then supports our suppliers to set focus areas and goals for improvement.

Depending on our strategic priorities, we provide support through capacity-building workshops, training and management system analysis. We take a holistic approach to continuous improvement at our suppliers, which includes quality and other business indicators as well as sustainability performance. We encourage our suppliers to develop their own strategies and solutions to challenges, as well as providing incentives to shift impacts from negative to positive.

Grievance mechanisms and worker voice

It is important to us that workers can report concerns and have their voices heard. Depending on a supplier’s level of risk or case history, we may require or recommend a factory to invest in a digital grievance mechanism.

Dealing with incidents and violations

Our approach to a report of noncompliance depends on the severity of the violation. We may issue a letter of concern and a corrective action plan, and engage with suppliers and affected stakeholders on remediation actions, including training or changes to policies and processes. In cases of severe noncompliance or if a supplier does not respond to remedial actions, we may end business the relationship.

How we work with factories outside the Higg scope

We take a risk-based approach to monitoring our business partners’ compliance and apply different levels and methods of evaluation depending on the nature of the goods and services provided. Facilities outside of the Higg Index scope are:

  • Small facilities with less than 25 workers, without the resources to fill in extensive Higg modules.
  • Newly constructed facilities that do not yet have a year of data for verification.
  • Facilities with low business, unable to cover the costs of Higg modules and verification.

All these facilities are covered by annual minimum requirement assessments, performed either by our internal team or by a certified third party. After several years where routines were disrupted due to COVID-19 lockdowns, we prioritised on-site unannounced visits to all our approved factories to conduct minimum requirement assessments.

We have now changed our monitoring routine from 100% third-party verifications to include more regular minimum requirement assessments by our staff.