Process Guide for Facilities

Verification Preparation

Facilities that are preparing and starting to go through Higg FSLM verification should follow the steps below:

  1. Facilities must first confirm the timing and terms of the verification directly with the verifier organization. Verification confirmation happens outside of the Higg.org platform (discuss directly with the verifier). View the list of Higg FSLM Verifiers here: howtohigg.org/verifiers
  2. The facility must first fully complete and post their Higg FSLM self-assessment (answer all the required questions) before being able to start verification. Posting FSLM self-assessment is optional not an requirement for verification because posting module doesn’t impact the verification process. If the facility doesn’t post their FSLM self-assessment, they still can move forward to the verification process. 
  3. AFTER the self-assessment is complete and the verification is confirmed, the facility should log into Higg.org and initiate the verification. 

Verification Process

1. Check your Verified Higg FSLM

Make sure you have completed the FSLM self-assessment and have an active verified Higg FSLM (vFSLM)

Before you can initiate your verification on Higg.org, please make sure you have completed the FSLM self-assessment and your vFSLM in your account.

  • Review the Purchasing Facility modules guide for instructions on how to purchase your vFSLM if you have not done this step already. You can purchase the single vFSLM on the FSLM home page or you can purchase the bundle of FSLM and vFSLM on the purchasing page. You must be located in the SLCP operation countries so you can purchase the vFSLM. Click here to check the SLCP operation countries.
  • If you are an SAC member manufacturer, you will need to allocate the modules for yourself on the module purchasing page. 
  • You can check if your vFSLM is allocated under the “Active History” tab on your FSLM home page or under “My Modules” tab on the FSLM “Modules” page.

2. Connect FSLM to SLCP by entering SLCP Facility ID

(This step is only for the facilities that are located in these countries, where the SLCP is implementing the verification operation. If the facility is located outside of these countries, you don’t need to do this step. Don’t need to create the facility account on the SLCP Gateway.)

Make sure that you have set up your facility account on SLCP gateway before this step. Get your SLCP facility ID from your facility account on SLCP gateway. Go back to the FSLM home page in your account in Higg.org. Click “Connect to the SLCP” under “Assessment Steps” on the FSLM home page. Enter your SLCP facility ID and click “Link”. You will see “Connect to the SLCP” successfully and review your SLCP FA ID in module status area

3. Complete the FSLM self-assessment

Click “View/Edit FSLM” to access the FSLM self-assessment. You can complete the FSLM online directly but make sure that you are in a good internet connection environment. Otherwise, your data might not be saved successfully. There is no button for saving the data because your data will be saved automatically in our system if you are in a stable and good internet environment.

You can work on the FSLM online and then download the offline FSLM excel file in Higg.org. After completing with your internal teams, import the excel file back to the online FSLM. You can refer to the below point (c) for importing data guidance. You can download the excel file into English and Chinese versions. The other language versions will be coming soon. 

Rules of completing the FSLM: Otherwise, the facility can’t post your FSLM or submit the FSLM for verification.

  • The completion rate of FSLM must be over 95% no matter if you work on the FSLM online or import the SLCP excel file data. If your completion rate is lower than 95%, you can click “Additional Filters” and select “Unanswered” filter to check the questions you haven’t answered and make the completion rate over 95%.
  • The facility must complete all questions in the “Facility Profile” section.
  • The facility must complete all “required” questions. To check the required questions, you can click “additional filters” at the top of FSLM module page and select “Required” filter to check all required questions in each section.

After your FSLM is completed (completion rate is over 95%), you can click “Submit/Post Assessment” to post the FSLM. You can also select the verification body first and then submit your FSLM self-assessment. Once your FSLM is posted, you won’t be able to reopen it for editing.

3. Selecting a verifier body

You can select your verifying body on the FSLM home page dashboard.

  • If you don’t have a vFSLM, you can’t see the “Selecting verifying body” button on the FSLM dashboard page.
  • Once you have completed the FSLM self-assessment and purchased the vFSLM, you can see the “Selecting verifying body” button on the FSLM dashboard page.
  • You can select the verifying body before or after posting the FSLM self-assessment.

Click “Select Verifying Body” and a list of all the registered Higg FSLM Verifier Bodies (Organizations) will open. Click “Confirm” next to the verifying organization you have confirmed your verification with.

  • If you do not see the name of the verifying organization you have confirmed your verification with, please contact them and ask if they have set up their Verifier Body account on Higg.org and what their account name is.
  • After you select the Verifying Body, their name will show up on the Higg FSLM home page next to “Verifying Body Selected”.

4. Changing a selected verifying body if needed

You can change the selected verifying body if needed but you can only change it before the verifier starts the verification. So you can change the verifying body when the module status is ASI or ASC but you can’t change when the module status is VRP. Once the VB is confirmed, it will show as “Accepted”.

5. Submitting/Posting your FSLM self-assessment

You must post your FSLM self-assessment so your FSLM can be submitted for verification. To post and submit the FSLM self-assessment, the completion rate of FSLM self-assessment must be over 95%. You can click the “submit/post module” button on the FSLM assessment page or dashboard page. Once the FSLM self-assessment is posted and submitted, you can’t unpost and edit it.  In addition, your FSLM module status will become ASC (Assessment Completed).  If you want to unpost for editing, you have to submit a request to the Higg Index Support team to require editing your FSLM and don’t move to the verification process.

After posting and submitting the verification, the system will send a notification to the Verifier Body that they can assign a verifier and start verification. Then the VB will assign the verifiers to your assessment. You will be able to see it on your FSLM dashboard. When the verification starts, the FSLM assessment status becomes VRP (verification in progress) .

6. Verification Begin

When the verifier clicks “Begin verification” from their side, the facility FSLM status will become VRP (Verification in Progress) from ASC (Assessment Complete) on the FSLM home page dashboard.

7. What you can do under VRC status

After the verifier submits the verification, the facility verified FSLM status will become VRC (Verification Complete) on the facility FSLM home page dashboard.The assessment status has been changed from VRP to VRQ (Verification Quality Check by SLCP)  to VRC.  Under VRC status, the facility can do below:

1) Request for editing your verification  (VRE – Verification Being Edited)

  1. The facility will go to the FSLM dashboard and “Available Action” section to click the “Request Edit” button. Once done, the assessment status will be changed to VRE.
  2. Under “VRE” status, the verifier can edit the verification assessment.
  3. After the assessment is completed editing, the verifier will submit the verification. The assessment status will be changed from VRE to VRC.
  4. Under “VRC” status, the verifier can’t edit the verification data.
 

2) Request for dispute (VRD – Dispute Verification)

  1. The facility can request dispute under “VRC” status. They will click the “Dispute Verification” button under the “Available Actions” section in the FSLM dashboard. Then their assessment status will be changed from VRC to VRD. The VOO will move from VRD to VRE from the admin tool if the dispute is accepted. Then the assessment will be shown as VRE status. The verifier can edit the verification data and submit it.
  2. After the verifier submits the verification data, the assessment status will be changed to VRC.
  3. Question level disagreements cannot be substantiated as a dispute. These should be directly discussed with the Verifier. Note that if a dispute is unsubstantiated the verified module status will be Finalised (status: VRF)
 

3) Finalize the verification 

  1. The facility can review and finalize the verification data by clicking the “Finalize Verified Assessment” button on the FSLM dashboard. Then the assessment status will be changed to VRF from VRC.
  2. Finalize Verified Assessment (VRF): Finalising the module is a one-time action. The brand should ensure it has reviewed all the Verifier responses and comments. If a facility finds mistakes, requires clarification, or disagrees with assessments, these should be discussed with the Verifier directly and request for VRE or VRD. Finalizing the verified assessment confirms that the brand has reviewed the report, discussed issues with the Verifier/Verifier Body, and resolved issues for which they can reach agreement.
 

However, only 14 days for facility and verifier to work on editing and finalizing the verification after the VRQ completed (VRQ – VRC) because on the 15th day, the verification module status will change to VRF automatically. There is a countdown clock on the FSLM dashboard to remind facilities how much time left to finalize the verification. When a dispute happens, the countdown clock will disappear since the dispute process might be longer than 14 days.

8. Review the finalized Higg FSLM and vFSLM

a. You can view the self-assessment FSLM and vFSLM on the FSLM home page dashboard or go to “My Modules” tab of Modules section to review both FSLM and vFSLM online.

b. You can also view the below files related to FSLM and vFSLM.

  • Overview: view your latest FSLM dashboard.
  • CSV V2: You can export the CSV file of the FSLM and vFSLM.
  • View Assessment: You can view the FSLM and vFSLM online.
  • Flagged Question Report: Questions flagged by verifiers for not being in line with legal requirements.
  • Verified Notification Report: Questions marked as Inaccurate or No Response by Verifier.
  • View Final Report: It will take you to the SLCP Gateway to review the detailed verification data at question-level. Higg.org platform won’t provide any finalized verification reports in an Excel file version.

9. Post your vFSLM after finalized

  • After you finalize the Verified FSLM (VRF), they may open the module and Post the verified assessment in order to share it with your connections (like client’s Higg account). You can post the vFSLM in the verified module or on the FSLM home page. To post your vFSLM, the completion rate of vFSLM must be over 95%.
  • Posting your module locks all your verification result and allows your connections to view your posted module. Connections cannot view your verified FSLM module until the module is posted. Once your post the vFSLM, you can’t unpost it.
  • If you have any trouble with starting verification please contact Higg Index Support: howtohigg.org/request.
  • Once the vFSLM is finalized, the FSLM Verification module will be moved off the dashboard and into the Modules page under My Modules tab. This is to allow the facility to start a new SLCP assessment if they want as the SLCP is not on a 1-year cadence.

 

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