As the apparel and footwear industries continue to evolve, environmental and social compliance is playing a greater role in how brands and retailers operate. But the tools needed to evaluate and improve on the current processes are not keeping pace with the demand for change.
Enter RISE, Inspectorio’s AI-powered platform designed to improve visibility, remove data silos and update outmoded communication methods in the industry’s quest to become more ethical.
“Our technology enables your manufacturing partners to continuously measure, evaluate and improve their sustainable and competitive efforts by providing them with real-time insights, tools and programs to accelerate and raise their facilities to a new level,” said co-founder and managing director Fernando Moncayo Castillo. “Right now, everyone is talking about transparency but it requires collaboration. If we don’t have a way to communicate, you can’t collaborate the way the industry needs.”
To make collaborating easier, Inspectorio has become a Social & Labor Convergence Program (SLCP) Accredited Host. This will ensure Inspectorio users have the ability to access verified data from the organization to use actionable analytics, manage corrective actions and drive continuous improvement initiatives that contribute to achieving greater accordance with social and labor requirements.
If the basis for the new platform sounds familiar, it should. Inspectorio RISE does for social and environmental compliance what Inspectorio’s SIGHT platform has done for quality.
Inspectorio SIGHT moves the industry from pen and paper audits and email communications to a connected, real-time platform through which information is assessable by all stakeholders. With Inspectorio, booking audits, audit reporting and corrective action plans are automated, giving brands and retailers greater visibility and providing factories and auditors with more accountability.
Further, SIGHT goes beyond quality control, allowing brands and retailers to get ahead of problems rather than simply identifying them after they happen. With Inspectorio SIGHT, brands and retailers can anonymously feed their data into the platform where machine learning uses the information to become smarter, anticipating issues and recommending corrective actions.
This silent collaboration model is also the basis for RISE.
Through the RISE platform, apparel companies can manage internal proprietary audits, integrate third party standards, and monitor social and environmental issues in their manufacturing facilities. Ultimately, they can track their factories’ progress toward instituting more ethical practices and meet industry benchmarks.
“Right now, as a retailer or brand, you’re blind. You may know that the manufacturing facility has problems, and you can suggest a course of action but you don’t know if people are taking the steps needed to improve,” Castillo said. “RISE allows you to track the development of that manufacturing facility within the platform.”
How it works: brands, retailers, and/or suppliers identify the standard they use to assess their manufacturing partners. These could be proprietary guidelines or requirements set forth by third-party agencies. Based on that criteria, they can see how the factories measure up and the areas that need improvement. From there, the brands, retailers, and/or suppliers can manage corrective actions and preventive actions, which may include recommendations based on industry best practices or a given factory’s historical data. While the manufacturing facilities take action, all of their partners can track their progress on the platform.
By joining one centralized network, brands, retailers and suppliers can be connected with their entire production ecosystem with complete visibility into their results. Ultimately, Castillo said, having apparel companies actively working with factories in this way benefits the entire industry.
“If you’re good, I’m good,” he said. “So, my responsibility as a brand or retailer is to give you all the tools not only to measure how you are but also to get you to a different level.”
One final advantage of the Inspectorio platforms is that they interconnect. Users employing both RISE and SIGHT have access to one dashboard where both quality and compliance are tracked.
“One problem we’ve seen in the market is quality doesn’t talk to sustainability. So how can you talk about responsible sourcing when you don’t have an operating system with the information of both?” Castillo said. “We’re an operating system and a common language or a space where different members of the brands and retailers can get together to share the information.”
Through this empowered production network, fashion firms have the data and tools they need to appraise and continuously improve their processes.
Inspectorio is currently onboarding additional factories, brands and retailers and the company is in the process of recruiting NGOs, compliance consultants and other industry organizations into the platform.
To learn more about Inspectorio RISE, sign up for the company’s webinar that will provide a deep dive on Dec. 17.