Officeworks - Ethical sourcing
Officeworks is committed to upholding and respecting human rights in its operations, throughout its supply chain and for its customers, while driving a culture of integrity and accountability, where everyone, including workers in its global supply chain, can raise a concern and have their voices heard.
As a leading retailer for technology and educational supplies in Australia, Officeworks’ Ethical Sourcing Program continues to evolve in line with industry developments. It is guided by the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, which highlights the responsibility of businesses to uphold and respect human rights in their operations.
To complement its ethical sourcing audit program, and with an aim to improve worker wellbeing and engagement in its direct supply chain, Officeworks continued to implement worker surveys to better understand working conditions and employee concerns in its global supply chain.
The worker surveys enable Officeworks to engage with workers to identify concerns that might not have been captured during audits and to work with factory management to take appropriate action to embed positive change for workers.
The survey captures worker sentiment across five areas, including grievance mechanism, wages and working hours, workplace wellbeing, environment and health and safety, and productivity and stability. Following its successful implementation in four factories in the 2022 financial year, this is the third year Officeworks has implemented worker surveys doubling the number of factories engaged to eight.
Based on worker feedback collected in the first round of surveys, Officeworks collaborated with factory management to implement appropriate actions to address their concerns and improve the overall working conditions at each site. This included rewarding workers for providing their feedback, introducing several team member engagement activities, including holding town halls, organising additional activities to encourage worker belonging, monthly meetings with worker representatives and quarterly surveys to continue to ensure concerns were being addressed.
Six months after the first round of surveys, Officeworks conducted follow-up surveys to understand worker sentiment at these sites and saw an improvement in worker sentiment of 13 per cent, enabling positive change to 3,390 workers.
As part of its commitment to work towards eradicating modern slavery, all suppliers of goods and services must adhere to Officeworks’ Ethical Sourcing and Modern Slavery Policy, which outlines the minimum standards required to work with Officeworks.
To date, Officeworks has mapped more than 28,400 products to the primary site of manufacturing, with 1,111 sites included in its ethical sourcing program. In the 2023 financial year, 626 third-party ethical sourcing audits were reviewed, 940 major non-conformances were remediated and 168 factories improved their factory rating.
Officeworks continues its focus on working with suppliers and non-government organisations to remediate and scale impact, increase transparency throughout its supply chain while collaborating and promoting a coordinated approach to tackling complex modern slavery issues.