Information about the SEDEX Audit

The Supplier Ethical Data Exchange (SEDEX) database is a world-renowned platform for sharing information about ethically sustainable production in the supply chain. The SEDEX database enables members to support supplier management and reduce risk through the exchange of information. This results in improving ethically responsible business practices.

Demonstrate compliance with high standards for working conditions and human rights.

Transparency of social commitment for potential partners

Exchange of information on an internationally recognized database

Responsible business practices across the value chain

Beschreibung Standard/Regelwerk

Basic information on SEDEX

SEDEX (Supplier Ethical Data Exchange) represents the largest platform for sustainability in the supply chain. The information in this platform is based on a proprietary audit format, the SEDEX Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA audit). The topics include human rights, occupational health and safety, the environment, and business ethics and there is a strong focus on workers’ rights.

At the same time, SMETA specifies a uniform reporting format to ensure that the information is meaningful and comparable. The audit report resulting from your SMETA audit is posted to the SEDEX database. This internationally recognized platform makes an important contribution to transparency in sustainable corporate social responsibility and supports SEDEX members in supplier management and risk reduction.

The ETI Code (Ethical Trade Initiative) serves as the foundation. As a rule, the incentive for a SEDEX audit comes from a supplier's customer. For the procedure, a Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) must be completed.

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What are the SEDEX membership categories?

Companies register in the SEDEX database as A, B, or AB Members, depending on their type.

  • A Members: End of the supply chain, often retailers, who want to manage their suppliers through SEDEX.
  • B Members: Usually producers at the beginning of the supply chain, who are asked to share data on their sustainability performance with their buyers.
  • AB Members: processors and traders in the middle of the supply chain. They receive information from their suppliers and provide info about their sustainability performance to their customers.
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Why is SEDEX beneficial for my company?

With over 30,000 members worldwide, the SEDEX community provides your company with the assurance that your SEDEX partner meets the best practice requirements of the SMETA catalog in terms of sustainability in the supply chain.

Companies that have a SEDEX audit performed according to the SMETA guidelines and share this information in the database can demonstrate to buyers that they respect the principles of ethical and social sustainability in production. Additionally, buyers get the opportunity to effectively manage their supply chain according to these principles and thus reduce their risk.

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DQS: Your audit company for SEDEX audits

DQS is part of the SEDEX system as a so-called Affiliate Audit Company (AAC). This entitles us to perform SEDEX audits in the US and Canada as well as worldwide according to the SMETA catalog and to manage them centrally. The basis of your SEDEX audit is your self-assessment in relation to all sites that are to be assessed.


What are the steps involved in a SEDEX audit?

An already registered member of SEDEX invites you to a SMETA audit. In doing so, you agree to be audited. In addition, you must register or become a member of SEDEX for a fee.

This is followed by an on-site audit, in which DQS will check your information for compliance with the criteria of the SMETA catalog.

At the same time, our auditors record any deficiencies and develop a concept with you to implement the identified potential for improvement through suitable measures.

The findings of your audit are used to produce a detailed report for the SEDEX database. There you can provide your customers with insights into the audit results to demonstrate you meet their requirements.

A SMETA audit is not a certification. If and when the next audit should take place depends on the requirements of your customers.


How much does the SEDEX SMETA audit cost?

The cost of a SEDEX SMETA audit depends primarily on the size of the company. We are happy to make you an customized quote for your company without obligation.


What you can expect from DQS

  • DQS is an approved member of the SEDEX Affiliate Audit Companies and the APSCA initiative
  • Worldwide, multicultural expertise
  • Industry-experienced experts with insight into local markets
  • Personal, seamless support from our specialists - regionally, nationally and internationally

Request for quote

Your local contact

We will be happy to provide you with an individual quote for SEDEX SMETA audits.