Technical Article Shared - SMETA 6.0 FAQ
Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA) is one of the most widely used ethical audit formats in the world. An estimated 280,000 SMETAs have been conducted to date with 93,000 of those on the Sedex Advance system. SMETA is an audit procedure which is a compilation of good practice in ethical audit technique. It is not a code of conduct, a new methodology, or a certification process.
Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA) is one of the most widely used ethical audit formats in the world. An estimated 280,000 SMETAs have been conducted to date with 93,000 of those on the Sedex Advance system.
1. What is SMETA?
SMETA is an audit procedure which is a compilation of good practice in ethical audit technique. It is not a code of conduct, a new methodology, or a certification process.
Using SMETA, a supplier can have one audit conducted and share it with multiple customers, rather than having a different audit conducted for each customer. The SMETA documents are designed to be used by experienced auditors in line with current established practices.
SMETA methodology uses the ETI code and local law as the measurement tool. It includes four modules:
- Health and safety
- Labour standards
- Environment (optional)
- Business ethics (optional)
2. Who can use SMETA？
While SMETA was developed for Sedex members, companies who are not members of Sedex are also encouraged to use it.
3. SMETA 6.0
SMETA is developed and maintained by the Sedex Stakeholder Forum (the SSF). The latest version of SMETA was launched in April 2017, with an implementation date of June 1st 2017.
SMETA 6.0 consists of four core documents：
- SMETA Best Practice Guidance (pdf): A best practice guidance on conducting ethical trade audits
- SMETA Measurement Criteria (pdf): A set of instructions on the items to be checked by auditors
- SMETA Report (download): An audit report format
- SMETA CAPR (download): A corrective action plan format
4. What happens with follow up audits when the original audit was conducted against 5.0?
It will be possible to conduct partial follow-up audits against 5.0 for up to 1 year, until 1st June 2018.
5. How many audit type for SMETA audit, what’s the difference？
1) Notification of an Audit
- Announced: audit date is agreed with, or disclosed to, the audited site.
- Semi-announced: audit date will fall within an agreed ‘window’. The buying company or audit body will specify a window during which an audit may take place. Audit windows may range between 2 weeks and 2 months. (The SSF recommends that a 3-week window gives optimum results.)
- Unannounced: no prior notice is given
2) Sequence of Audits
- Full Initial Audit: The first time a site of employment is audited.
- Periodic Audit: Usually a full audit used to monitor supplier sites on an on-going basis. The intervals between periodic audits may vary depending on the individual member.
- Follow-up Audit: Depending on the outcome of the initial audit, a follow-up audit may be required.
i) Full Follow-up Audit: When the extent of the non-compliances found at a previous audit was so broad that a full audit is required to verify corrective action. In this case the methods and scope resemble an initial audit but take into account previous audit findings.
ii) Partial Follow-up Audit: Where the auditor visits a site but only checks progress against issues found during a previous audit. This should then be recorded in Sedex as a partial follow-up audit.
iii) Desktop Follow-up: Can be used for certain corrective actions for which a site visit is not required and can instead be verified remotely e.g. through photographic evidence or documents provided via e-mail.
The above content is from Sedex's Official website or SMETA Best Practices Guide
Ms. Alexis Shu
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SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 90,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 2,000 offices and laboratories around the world.