We believe one of the key factors that reduces the risk of negative human rights impacts, including forced labour, is having long-term mutually beneficial partnerships with suppliers and service providers based on shared values. Today, the average length of the relationship between Inter IKEA Group and our home furnishing suppliers is 11 years, giving us the opportunity to support development and engagement with our business partners.
Requirements and Due Diligence
Wherever we operate, we must be able to secure that our minimum requirements are being met concerning working conditions, social and environmental standards. Where verification is not possible, we cannot conduct or start up a new business.
The IKEA supplier code of conduct, IWAY – The IKEA Way of Responsibly Procuring Products, Services, Materials and Components, and our internal code of conduct, IConduct, address issues such as child labour, forced or bonded labour, responsible recruitment and wages and working hours. These requirements set clear expectations for developing our business relationships and our ways of working. If a supplier fails to develop its business to fulfil the IWAY requirements or to correct any deviation within a given time frame, despite the support from IKEA, the supplier will ultimately be phased out and the business agreement will be terminated.
Both IWAY and IConduct are based on the eight core International Labour Organisation (ILO) conventions and reference the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact which support our commitment to respect human rights.
We believe that our processes and ways of working are effective and robust. We focus on development and support through our everyday business and verify the results through announced and unannounced activities. Inter IKEA Group has offices, called Purchasing Services Offices (PSOs), in 20 countries with almost 3,000 co-workers. This is key to our long-term approach to developing business relationships with our home furnishing suppliers. These offices are responsible for developing and securing optimal support for all suppliers and business partners in the area. Among other responsibilities, these offices secure risk management and compliance with laws and standards and verify quality and sustainability compliance and compliance connected to workers’ rights, on site at suppliers on behalf of Inter IKEA Group.
We know that respecting human rights and ultimately creating a positive impact in society will not be done by us alone. We welcome the opportunity to work closely with other stakeholders towards these goals. That’s why we have played an active role, along with others, in leading the change we want to see. One example is the Leadership Group for Responsible Recruitment (LGRR) that supports the Employer Pays Principle to eliminate recruitment fees being charged to workers anywhere in the world by 2026. We think these types of initiative, alongside dialogue and cooperation with government and civil society, are crucial in the prevention of forced labour, enabling respect for human rights and achieving our ambition to have a positive impact on people and society. We strive to take an active role in co-creating the world we live in. IKEA wants to create a positive impact on people and society, and we believe that with our size, experience and commitment, we can make a difference. We will continue to drive towards improving our work across industries by creating a movement towards better working conditions. We acknowledge that in some areas and at some moments, this is a challenging journey, but by setting clear expectations, prioritising continuous development and working with others, we believe that we can contribute to a better everyday life where all people’s rights are respected.
However, no process is so good that it cannot be improved. We continuously take input from many stakeholders, which allows us to learn and develop our processes and due diligence and stay relevant in changing times.