End-to-end assurance systems and processes

End-to-end assurance processes that focus on improving conditions for workers, and future-proofing the ability of New Zealand businesses to trade.

1. Workforce planning

  • Forecast what resources will be needed, such as worker numbers, timeline and budget.

2. Pre-procurement planning

  • Decide on specific tender conditions to include in an Request for tender or expression of interest (RFx) before engaging with suppliers and going to market. These should include labour rights, environmental standards and any further conditions or standards the procurer expects from their suppliers.
  • Think about how the procurer can influence positive assurance measures throughout their supply chain.

For more information, see: 

Assuring ethical and sustainable work practices through procurement [PDF 281KB]

3. Supply chain mapping

  • Identify and record businesses, employers and suppliers across the entire supply chain (eg tier 1 contractors and subsequent sub-contractors).

For more information, see:

Step 1 of Assuring ethical and sustainable work practices through procurement [PDF 281KB]

4. Risk assessment

  • Identify labour rights risks within business and throughout supply chain and what actions can be taken to mitigate these. 

For more information, see:

Step 2 of Assuring ethical and sustainable work practices through procurement [PDF 281KB]

Ethical and Sustainable Work Practices: Risk Factors to Manage [PDF 225KB]

Ethical and Sustainable Work Practices: Mitigations to Reduce Risk [PDF 210KB]

5. Code of conduct – employer, procurer and supplier

  • Set out and document expected behaviours around business ethics, employment practices treatment of workers (specific to human and labour rights, including employment standards and good worker conditions), and what actions will be taken if the code of conduct is not complied with.
    • Include a requirement for the employer to report any instances where they are being investigated by the Labour Inspectorate, or where they have been found by the Labour Inspectorate, Employment Relations Authority, or the Employment Court to have breached any of the listed legislation.

For more information, see:

Creating and communicating a code of conduct for your own business

6. Audit – self audit and supply chain audit

  • Conduct agreed checks within the immediate business and their supply chain to confirm compliance with employment legislation and other expectations, and identify any issues of non-compliance.
  • Audits conducted by internal or external auditors (third party/independent audit recommended) throughout the life of the engagement.
  • If a full audit is not possible, the other option would be annual report, where the supplier produces a report on what assurance systems they have in place, identifies any issues and what actions were taken to resolve these.

For more information, see the Employment Standards Employer self-assessment checklist and guide: 

Employer self-assessment checklist [PDF 654KB]

Employer self-assessment guide [PDF 934KB]

7. Employee/worker voice platform

  • Conduct a survey or interview workers to gather feedback and identify potential employment issues, including employment standards breaches and areas of concern in the business and supply chain.
    • This can be included or used alongside an annual audit to verify findings of the audit or risk assessment to identify areas for further scrutiny.

8. Worker reporting channels

  • Provide a hotline or a whistleblowing channel, separated from an employee voice tool, which is available any time to report employment issues, including employment standard breaches, directly to a qualified or appropriate person to address the concerns.
    • This can be operated in-house or through an external agency.
    • Workers can be provided access to this through apps, websites or email services.

9. Complete data analysis, reporting and monitoring

  • Collect and analyse data from the above processes and any other relevant channels to provide a continuous and real time picture of compliance in the business and supply chain.

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Page last revised: 18 April 2023

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