Brand Engagement Guidelines | Zalando BRM Foundations


What is BRM Foundations?

The Higg Brand & Retail Module, or BRM, is a holistic sustainability assessment tool managed by Higg. The BRM is part of the Higg Index, which is a suite of tools developed by the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC), for the standardized measurement of supply chain sustainability, used by the footwear, apparel, textile, and other industries. The BRM is a tool that standardizes how brands and retailers measure and evaluate their environmental and social performance, year over year.

Brand & Retail Module Foundations, or BRM Foundations,  is the ideal solution for small or medium-sized businesses and teams, or companies beginning their sustainability journey. It will help you get started to evaluate your social and environmental management systems, drive performance improvement and assess social and environmental risks – aligning with standards, government initiatives, and other Higg tools.

Why is Zalando asking you to complete BRM Foundations?

Zalando’s vision is ​to be a sustainable fashion platform with a net-positive impact on people and the planet.​ In line with the 2023 Sustainability Strategy ​do.More, Zalando has committed to ​only working with partners who meet our ethical standards​. To address this, we decided to implement an assessment framework for brands that are selling on our Fashion Store. As Europe’s leading destination for fashion, we want to leverage the role we play in the industry, and create greater transparency for customers, so that we can enable them to make more sustainable choices together. Over the next months and years, we will work together closely with brands to push for better social and environmental standards.

Who is Higg? 

Higg is the sustainability insights platform, helping consumer goods businesses take responsibility for their entire impact – from materials to products, from factories to stores, across energy, waste, water, and working conditions.

By making both data collection and performance analysis easier, we help brands and manufacturers make better environmental, social and governance decisions – across all parts of their business.

Spun out of the SAC in 2019, Higg is the exclusive licensee of the Higg Index, a suite of tools for the standardized measurement of supply chain sustainability.

  • Create an account.
  • Purchase your BRM Foundations access.
    • Purchase via Credit Card or Wire Transfer. If your company must be billed an invoice select Wire Transfer. 
    • Zalando is offering a subsidies discount to Brand Partners that are completing BRM Foundations for the first time based on brand revenue and fee category. Please see the following link for the breakdown of subsidy codes to be used. 
  • Select a “lead” within your company who will be responsible for tracking progress and assignment of questions across the company. The project lead will have to consult and engage with different departments and teams to respond to the questions and collect data. 
  • To manage your account or add team members click here.  

FAQs about Getting Started

  • When do I need to complete my BRM Foundations?
    • The tool opens March 1st, 2022 and your assessment has to be completed and shared with Zalando by June 30th, 2022. Please note you can only share assessments that are 100% complete.  
  • How often do I need to complete BRM Foundations?
    • Zalando requires you to complete and share your BRM Foundations on an annual basis.
  • How much time is required to complete BRM Foundations ?
    • BRM Foundations should take your team 1-2 weeks to complete.  The system will allow you to save your responses, which you can revisit at any point
  • What are the consequences of not completing BRM Foundations?
    • BRM Foundations is a critical component of Zalando’s corporate strategy and failure to complete the BRM Foundations will result in an escalation and review of applicable consequences which may include offboarding. Please reach out to Higg or Zalando if you are facing any issues in completing BRM Foundations.
  • Can BRM Foundations be completed on a Group level or does each individual brand have to complete it?
    • BRM Foundations can be completed on Group level.
  • Do I have to be an SAC member to access and complete BRM Foundations?
    • No, you do not need to be an SAC member to access and complete BRM Foundations.
  • Will my BRM Foundations data be shared publicly?
    • No, unverified data and scores cannot be shared publicly. If you decide to participate in the voluntary BRM Foundations verification process you will be able to publish your results using SAC communications guidelines. Please contact Zalando for further information on the verification process.
  • What are the costs to access BRM Foundations ? 
    • The cost, and potential subsidies offered by Zalando, of BRM Foundations will depend on your company’s revenue size. Please follow the link to the breakdown of subsidy codes.

Organizations who have never completed BRM Foundations:

Module costs are based on yearly revenue to accommodate all budgets and encourage participation.

Your Yearly


Higg BRM Foundations


Zalando Subsidy



Discount Code

Under $100


$1,100 -$825 $275 ZBMF1

$100m to $1


$3,300 -$825 $2,475 ZBMF2
Over $1 Billion $5,500 -$1,375 $4,125 ZBMF3
  • January, 2022 – BRM Foundations available for presale on
  • March 1, 2022 – BRM Foundations tool opens to start completing 
  • June 30, 2022 – Deadline for 100%  completion and share BRM Foundations


In order to assist in the successful completion of BRM Foundations, Zalando is working with Higg to offer its Brand Partners a comprehensive webinar series along with office hours. Office hours are hosted by Higg offering Brand Partners an open forum to bring questions on BRM Foundations and ask Higg experts. Please see the full list of webinars and office hours under the webinar tab.

  • Add Office Hours to your calendar.
  • Add Training Webinars to your calendar.
  • Bookmark 
  • Questions? Brand Partners are on a priority queue. Access support once you’re logged into your Higg account.

BRM Foundations Webinars

 Please click on the title of the Webinar to register.

BRMF: Kick off with Zalando Brand ListFebruary 15th, 2022
BRMF #1: Getting Started & Navigating Challenging QuestionsMarch 8th,  2022
BRMF: Office Hours #1April 5th, 2022
BRMF: Office Hours #2April 19th, 2022
BRMF #2: Finishing Up & Next StepsMay 3rd, 2022

BRM Foundations Webinar Recordings 

Webinar Recording Password
BRMF #1: Getting Started & Navigating Challenging Questions 23A*.hd2
BRMF: Office Hours #1$ysP7%1Q
BRMF: Finishing Up & Next Steps28yVd$be

BRM Foundations Presentations

Zalando BRM Foundation 2021 – Project Kickoff Link
Zalando BRM Foundation 2021 – Removing Interpretation Link
Zalanda BRM Foundation 2021 – Challenging QuestionsLink
  • How will Zalando use your BRM Foundations data?
    • Zalando will be using the data received from Brand Partners to
      •  understand where the challenges are,
      •  measure brand performance and supply chain impacts,
      •  share trends,
      •  collaborate with brands to drive meaningful improvements,
      •  develop minimum standard standards to raise the bar in the fashion industry and 
      • to understand areas that need support
      • In the future we would like to pursue how this information could enable consumers to make sustainable choices. 

Data confidentiality is governed by the Terms of Use

Data reported on the platform is GDPR compliant and has access and security protocols in place to prevent unauthorised data access

Should you have further questions on data security, please contact

Higg’s training website,, contains all of the information and guidance brand partners need to help them at every stage of the module completion process.

Submit questions about Higg accounts, modules, and subscriptions to the Higg Support Team. 

For any escalated issues with completing the BRM Foundations reach out to Customer Success Managers Izzy Joly,  and Anna Benzin 

General FAQs 

  • My company has a Higg account, but I don’t have a login.
    • Once you have created an account, additional team members can be added to the account to access the collected data, support in completing the modules, etc. To invite a new user to the account, go to the ‘My Team’ tab and click the Invite New User button. Add the email address and send the invitation. Once the user accepts, they will have access to the account. 
  • I’ve forgotten my password, how do I reset it?
    • If you need to reset your password, click the button “Don’t remember my password” and follow the prompts to reset your password.