What is the Converged Assessment Framework (CAF) version 1.4?
In 2020, SLCP conducted a full review of the Converged Assessment Framework (CAF) in collaboration with ILO-Better Work (BW). The outcome of this process is an updated version of the Converged Assessment Framework, known as version 1.4. In August 2020, SLCP and ILO-BW piloted the CAF v1.4 and SLCP signatories reviewed the prototype. The CAF v1.4 was finalized in October 2020. Between November 2020 and March 2021, SLCP Accredited Hosts will integrate the new CAF into their platforms and SLCP will update training and resource materials, in preparation for launch.
I am a facility and I have already started an SLCP assessment using the CAF version 1.3 – will I be able to finish it?
If you started an SLCP assessment with the CAF v1.3, you will still be able to complete it for as long as necessary, even past the launch of CAF v1.4. However, we advise you to try and finish your CAF v1.3 SLCP assessment as soon as possible, because SLCP Support will be focused on CAF v1.4 from March 2021 onwards. Please also note that although you can continue to finish your CAF v1.3 assessment and verification, from March 2021 onwards, you will no longer be able to start new assessments using CAF v1.3. Come March 2021, you will only be able to start CAF v1.4 assessments.
I am a brand using verified data from SLCP assessments conducted with CAF version 1.3 – will I still be able to access and use the data?
You will still be able to access and use verified data from CAF v1.3 SLCP assessments. This data will remain available on the SLCP Gateway and the Accredited Host platforms.
What is different between the CAF v1.3 and the CAF v1.4?
The Converged Assessment Framework v1.4 is an enhanced version of v1.3: it is shorter, simpler, more user-friendly and better aligned with legislation. The principles and approach remain the same: a self-assessment followed by verification resulting in a verified social and labor data set with no scoring. SLCP has worked closely with ILO-Better Work to improve several elements of the CAF. The five key changes are:
- Reduction in the number of data points: Redundant and duplicative questions have been removed from the CAF, creating an overall reduction in data points of 29%. This will make it easier for smaller facilities to use the CAF.
- Redefinition of Steps: Steps have been rearranged to better meet the needs of stakeholders. The new Step 1 is called “Essential” and focuses on critical social and labor data. It will require less time for facilities to complete the assessment and will be suitable for the majority of stakeholders.
The new Steps are explained below:
- Step 1 = Essential includes key social & labor compliance questions, mostly connected to International Labor Standards (ILS) and National Labor Law (NLL).
- Step 2 = Progressive includes all Step 1 questions with additional supportive social & labor compliance questions that are less critical. These additional questions are often found in social industry and certification standards. Step 2 also includes management system questions.
- Step 3 = Advanced includes all Step 1 and Step 2 questions with additional questions that go above and beyond social responsibility industry standards, are not required by national or international law, and seek to elevate workplace well-being and community impact.
- Enhanced alignment with international labor standards and national labor law: Questions in the CAF have been revised to better determine non-compliance with national and international legislation. In addition, there will be a “Law Overlay” by country and law guidance provided on the Accredited Host platforms. See details of these below:
Law Overlay: customized legal guidance will be available for some countries, automatically indicating a non-compliance and the relevant legal reference for Verifiers as they complete verification data on the Accredited Host platform. Law Overlays will be rolled out gradually, starting with ILO-BW countries first. An up-to-date list of countries where the Law Overlay is available will be on the Gateway homepage.
Law Guidance: this will be included on the Accredited Host platforms for specific questions to educate the facility and the Verifier on applicable standards in the country of assessment. A downloadable file capturing the Law Guidance for informational purposes will also be provided on the SLCP Helpdesk.
- Improved offline Excel user interface: The CAF v1.4 Excel tool is more user-friendly, with all questions available in one sheet and without the current “stop-load” issues. Additionally, color-coding has been improved to guide Verifiers in which questions they need to verify.
- Introduction of Facility Guidance: This document will help facilities better understand the assessment process and how to complete the self-assessment. It also specifically addresses opportunities for worker engagement in the self-assessment process.
I use SLCP verified data to evaluate compliance against my standard and create Corrective Action Plans – how will SLCP help me make the shift from CAF v.1.3 to CAF v.1.4?
To support you in preparing for CAF v1.4 launch, SLCP has a file that can help you understand – point-by-point – all the details of the changes. Please reach out to the SLCP Helpdesk to ask for access to that file.
Starting in January, SLCP will also be sharing more information about CAF v1.4, including:
- How CAF v1.4 compares to standards on the ITC Standards Map;
- A sample of the Gateway final verified assessment report;
- An Excel file of CAF v1.4 content so you can see what the scope of questions is for each Step selection;
- More information to educate facilities on what Step to select.