The LS&Co. Worker Well-being initiative

Name of Company

Levi Strauss & Co.

Country of Origin

United States of America

Sector

Personal & Household Goods

Region

Global

Issue Covered

Practices

Engagement with Suppliers

Sub Categories

Background

The LS&Co. Worker Well-being initiative is a new approach to supply chain management that looks beyond the factory walls to improve the lives of workers who make LS&Co. products. Representing the next evolution of sustainable labor practise, the Worker Well-being initiative goes beyond labor compliance to support financial empowerment, health and family well-being and equality and acceptance.

Description of Program or Activity

The Worker Well-being initiative takes a unique approach by partnering with suppliers and local organizations to design and deliver programs that meet worker needs. Before the implementation of any program, suppliers distribute a survey to factory workers in order to get first hand information about their needs. Once challenges are identified, suppliers partner with local non-profits and NGOs in order to implement programs that will meet the needs identified.

After beginning the pilot in 2011 in five countries, LS&Co. announced in October 2016 the expansion of its Worker well-being initiative with the objective of implementing it across its entire supply chain.

The expansion is expected to:

  • Enable Levi Strauss to produce more than 80 % of its product volume in Worker Well-being factories by 2020
  • Reach more than 300,000 workers by 2025
  • Implement the program with all strategic vendors           

The best practices, tools and standards of the Worker Well-being initiative are publicly available and the objective is to drive system-level change and contribute to a shift in the apparel industry towards sustainable worker practices. 

Lessons Learned

One of the biggest lessons LS&Co. learned through this program was the importance of supplier partnership. By demonstrating business value to suppliers, we were able to gain their support and financial investment. This allows programs to continue at the factories without direct funding from LS&Co., creating a sustainable model.

Impact

LS&Co. believes that investments in worker well-being enable a more conducive business environment, creating value for workers, factories and LS&Co. Investing in worker well-being programs have social and business impact, benefitting suppliers by reducing turnover and improving productivity while strengthening LS&Co.’s relations with its suppliers.

• In Haiti workers participating or aware of worker well-being programs reported a 91% job satisfaction rate according to an independent evaluation.
• HERhealth women’s health projects in Egypt generated a $4 return for every $1 invested according to studies.