Company Profile

Company Profile

Reading Time: 10 Minutes

Before You Get Started

  • Your responses to the company profile information questions will be used to categorize your company for comparative analytics as well as to unlock other sections. Please complete this section first before moving on to other sections of the module.
  • The answers provided by your company in this section will unlock or hide subsequent questions in other sections. It is therefore the expectation that companies first complete this section before proceeding to the others: Brand, Retailer, Stores and Operations & Logistics.
  • When reviewing the questions, please refer back to the tool if the answer options are not listed below. Some answer options are omitted for brevity.
  • 9 questions are covered in the Company Profile section.

Questions

Intent of the question

Your company must meet basic local regulations before proceeding to beyond-compliance sustainability behavior. This question is intended to confirm that you have a process to manage local permits and compliance.

Technical Guidance

Answer options: Yes/No 

If you answered “yes” describe the violation and the action plan to improve it.

Examples of violations are: Restricted substances used in the final product, improper waste stream handling, labor violations related to overtime or worker injuries.

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • If you answered yes, please provide a copy of government-issued violation record
  • Evidence of issues listed on the government-issued violation record
  • Action plans to address issues along with responsible staff and tracked progress
  • Communications with the government showing how the issue is being addressed

Interview questions to ask

  • Reason for the government-issued violation record?
  • Have the issues listed in the violation record been addressed? Please describe how (the steps that have been taken) and provide evidence

Intent of this question

The answer is used to categorize your company for comparative analytics in the benchmarking.

Technical Guidance

Select the country where your company is headquartered

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Business Registration License 
  • Corporate Website

Important Note: The selected options will drive applicability and whether you will have to complete the Brand, Retailer, and Stores sections.

Company Ownership – Answer Options:

  • Public
  • Private
  • Subsidiary

Business Model – Answer Options:

  • Retailer: Does your company purchase products from other companies to sell?
    • Answer options: Yes/No
  • Brand: Does your company create its own branded products?
    • Answer options: Yes/No
  • Stores: Does your company have brick-and-mortar stores?
    • Answer options: Yes/No

Intent of this question

This question will support in unlocking the relevant sections that are applicable to your specific business model.

Technical Guidance

Company ownership

  • Public (Publicly listed companies)
  • Private (Companies that are privately held and not publicly listed)
  • Subsidiary (Companies that are part of a holding company or a group)

Business model

  • Retailer: Companies selling products that are manufactured and branded by other companies, also known as third party brands, wholesale or national brands. For example retailers such as De Bijenkorf, Zalando and REI.

Note: If your company sells 1% or less of third party brands in your stores there is no need to report on this data through the Higg BRM since the impact is not considered significant.

  • Brand: Brand is defined as a company selling products that are manufactured and sold under your own company brand also known as private label. For example brands such as H&M, The North Face and Tommy Hilfiger.

Note: If your company is a licensee and manufacturers products, this section will be applicable to you.  If your company is a licensor, please encourage your licensee(s) to complete and share their Higg BRM results with you to gain insight into their sustainability performance. 

  • Stores: The scope of this question covers owned and leased stores but excludes stores that are not owned and operated by your company such as store-in-store (operated by department store) or franchised stores (operated by franchisees). For example stores operated by Zara, Uniqlo and Target.

Note: If your company works with franchisees for store operations, you may encourage them to complete and share their Higg BRM results with you to gain insight into their sustainability performance. 

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Business Registration License 
  • Corporate Website

Company Annual Financial Report, if available   

4.1 What percentage of these products are sold online

4.2 What percentage of these products are sold in store(s)

Intent of this question

This answer is used to categorize your company for comparative analytics in the benchmarking.

Technical Guidance

Definitions

  • Own distribution: company’s owned and operated stores
    • This excludes franchisees and store-in-store which are owned and operated by the department store/wholesale retailer. To capture this information, we encourage companies to request their franchisees and wholesale retailers to complete their own Higg BRM to gain insight into their sustainability performance.
  • Sold online: through e-commerce sales
  • Sold in stores: company’s owned and operated (leased) stores

To calculate:

This should be entered in product quantities (units sold) and should not be based on $. It is suggested to use Sell in & Sell Out (units).

For % Own Distribution:

  • Sell In to your own channels
  • Sell In to other retailers
  • Ratio would be Sell In (Own) / Sell In (Total = Own + Other)

For Sold Online and Sold In-Store, this is only for Own Distribution:

  • Sell Out (Online) / Sell Out (Total = Online + In Store)
  • Sell Out (In Store) / Sell Out (Total = Online + In Store)

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Business Registration License 
  • Corporate Website
  • Company Annual Financial Report, if available

Answer options:

  • Apparel
  • Footwear
  • Home Textiles
  • Accessories
  • Home Furnishings
  • Hard Goods
  • Other

Intent of this question

This answer is used to categorize your company for comparative analytics in the benchmarking.

Technical Guidance

  • Home Textiles (bed linen, towels, rugs/carpets)
  • Accessories (e.g. belts, bags, jewelry, etc.)
  • Home Furnishings (e.g. furniture and home decoration)
  • Hard Goods (e.g. equipment, tents & sleeping pads, backpacks, skis, snowboards & bindings, ski equipment gear, climbing gear, bicycles)
  • Other (any product category that has not been listed above)

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Relevant documentation provided by the company 
  • Company’s annual report, if available

Answer options:

  • Less than 5 million
  • 5-20 million
  • 20-100 million
  • 100-500 million
  • 500 million to 1 billion
  • 1-10 billion
  • Exceeding 10 billion

Intent of this question

The answer is used to categorize your company for comparative analytics in the benchmarking.

Technical Guidance

All revenue (including through licensee models) should be included.

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Relevant documentation provided by the company 
  • Company’s annual report, if available

Tooltip: Number of units sold in the last calendar year. 

Intent of this question

The answer is used to categorize your company for comparative analytics in the benchmarking and for further integration with the Higg Product Module.

Technical Guidance

  • Please provide total units (quantity/pieces) of all products sold from January 1 through December 31 of last calendar year.
  • Enter number of sold units (quantity/pieces) through either owned and operated retail stores and/or e- commerce sales.
  • Reporting on brand vs group: If you are reporting this as part of a brand then report the total number of sold units for the brand. If you are reporting this as part of a holding / parent company then report the total number of sold units for the entire holding / parent company.
  • When rounding, we recommend keeping at least 4 significant figures (i.e. the first four numbers of your number of units). For example: 12,456 units would be 12,460 units and 12,567,235 units would be 12,570,000 units.

The Sustainable Apparel Coalition recommends reporting of one Higg BRM per brand for the purpose of clarity and performance communications.

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Supporting documents used to calculate Total Units sold per year

Answer Options:

  • Asia Pacific (APAC)
  • Europe Middle East Africa (EMEA)
  • North America (NAMER)
  • Latin America (LATAM)
  • Global (All of the above)

Intent of this question

The answer is used to categorize your company for comparative analytics in the benchmarking.

Technical Guidance

Select the sales regions that are applicable to the sales of your product(s). Multiple selection possible.

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Corporate website 
  • Company’s annual report, if available

Answer Options:

  • 0 employees
  • 1-10 employees
  • 11-50 employees
  • 51-200 employees
  • 201-500 employees
  • 501-1000 employees
  • 1001-5000 employees
  • 5001-10,000 employees
  • 10,001+ employees

Follow-up questions:

9.1 Specify the number of full-time employees at your company 

9.2 Specify the number of part-time employees at your company

9.3 Specify the number of temporary employees at your company

Intent of question

The answer is used to categorize your company for comparative analytics in the benchmarking. 

Technical Guidance

  • Part-time employees: the term part-time employee refers to an employee whose normal hours of work, calculated on a weekly basis or on average over a period of employment of up to one year, are less than the normal hours of work of a comparable full-time worker. More information: ILO’s Convention No. 175
  • Temporary employees: employees that are on a temporary contract without a permanent duration or are recruited through labor recruitment agencies
  • Shared services and employees within a parent company should only be counted once and reported under the headquarters.

How this will be verified

Documentation required

  • Relevant records and reporting that Human Resources department are able to provide 
  • Company’s annual report if applicable

 

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