Corporate Social Responsibility

CSR Partner: Good World Solutions

Mobile technology increases transparency in global supply chains

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In developing countries, factory workers and farmers don’t have a confidential way to communicate with companies that sell what they produce. And, companies that rely on these laborers don’t have information about their working conditions or quality of life. Good World Solutions, with Cisco support, uses mobile technology to bridge the gap.

Who: Improving conditions for a global workforce

Labor Link, developed by Good World Solutions, uses mobile phones to establish anonymous-two way communication, and collect and disseminate information to factory workers and farmers. Global companies can use Labor Link to learn about working conditions or deliver information on health, safety, education, and finances. Factory managers can use it to deliver workplace safety training and evaluate job satisfaction, 365 days a year.

  • 89% of people in developing countries have a mobile phone.
  • More than 200,000 workers, farmers, and artisans in 15 countries have used Labor Link.
  • Companies in multiple sectors, from apparel and agriculture to ICT and electronics have adopted the tool.

How: Improving livelihoods and working conditions

Since 2010, Cisco cash grants have helped Good World Solutions design, implement, and scale Labor Link. Information captured through Labor Link is stored on the cloud and helps multinational companies identify issues within their supply chain and track improvements.

  • 70% cost savings over pen/paper surveys.
  • Labor Link surveys are anonymous and realize a 41% participation rate.
  • 2000X growth in number of workers using Labor Link from 2010 to 2015

Impact Multiplied

In 15 countries Labor Link is giving factory workers and farmers a voice and better access to life-changing information.

  • 33% increase in low-wage female factory workers in India who opened bank accounts after U.K. retailer Marks & Spencer conducted financial literacy training based on survey results from Labor Link.
  • Cisco piloted Labor Link with one of its suppliers – a unique opportunity to validate best practices and identify areas for improvement. 
  • Through Business for Social Responsibility and its HERfinance Initiative, Labor Link is being used to tailor financial education for thousands of low-income workers in 10 garment and footwear factories in India; and 81% of workers say the factory is a better place to work since HERfinance began.