Step 4. Managing Labor Recruiters

Fairing Hiring Toolkit for Suppliers

For Governments
 
This section provides a tailored introduction to the materials for governments and public policy actors, including an overview of the most relevant tools and guidance with an explanation of how these tools can support the work of governments and other public policy actors. These tools complement national and international regulatory efforts to promote fair hiring, reign in abusive labor recruiter practices, and establish rigorous protections for migrant workers.
For Advocates
 
This section of Verité’s Fair Hiring Toolkit provides a tailored introduction to the materials for labor rights advocates and labor unionists. An overview of the most relevant tools and guidance is provided, with an explanation of how these tools can support their work. The tools provided here are broad and multi-faceted, providing guidance on a range of issues linked to forced labor and human trafficking. You are encouraged to explore the material provided here and discover how you can put it to use in your own work.
For Investors
 
This section provides a tailored introduction to the materials for investors. An overview of the most relevant tools and guidance is provided, with an explanation of how these tools can support the work of investors. These tools can support investor campaigns, corporate advocacy and dialogue, and investment analysis of risks of forced labor and human trafficking in company operations and supply chains.
For Auditors
 
This section of Verité’s Fair Hiring Toolkit provides a tailored introduction to the materials for social auditors and certifiers. An overview of the most relevant tools and guidance is provided, with an explanation of how these tools can support their work. The Toolkit is extensive and multi-faceted; it provides guidance on a range of issues. Auditors are encouraged to explore the complete set of materials provided.
For Multi-Stakeholders
 
This section provides a tailored introduction to the materials for multi-stakeholder and multi-brand initiatives. An overview of the most relevant tools and guidance is provided, with an explanation of how these tools can support the work of multi-stakeholder and multi-brand initiatives.

Step 4. Managing Labor Recruiters & Monitoring for Ethical Recruitment & Hiring

Once a labor recruiter has been selected, a robust management system should be put in place that includes the setting of performance criteria – elaborated in the contract with the labor recruiter – and regular monitoring to verify compliance.

In formalizing a business relationship with the labor recruiter, the brand or supplier should begin with these considerations:

  • What services do you want the labor recruiter to provide?
  • What are the legal, social and ethical performance requirements that you expect the labor recruiter to meet?

You may have already answered these questions in the process of screening and evaluating labor recruiter candidates. Verité’s benchmarks for good practice also can be used to assist suppliers in developing performance criteria for social compliance. These criteria should be included in the contract with the labor recruiter and can then be used as benchmarks to monitor for compliance and continuous improvement.

In addition to articulating performance criteria in the contract with the labor recruiter, there are many proactive management strategies that companies can employ to best ensure that legal and social compliance requirements are met. See Tool 1 for some examples.

Developing methods to monitor the performance of the labor recruiter is another critical step, and the result will be highly individualized based on the structure and operations of the supplier facility.

As part of any verification scheme, Verité recommends that incoming migrant workers recruited by labor recruiter should be interviewed to determine the conditions under which they were recruited. Verité also recommends beginning any verification process with a self-assessment that allows the recruiter the opportunity to respond directly to a set of questions from the supplier and “self report” on performance. This affords an opportunity for the recruiter to be up-front about any challenges faced and solutions being explored. Such a process can set a positive tone for the assessment, emphasizing the desire not only for compliance but continuous improvement. Verité recommends that the self-assessment be followed by an audit-style verification process, completed by company staff or an independent third party.

See Tool 2 for further guidance on key issues to consider during a performance assessment process. Tools 3, 4, and 5 offer concrete sets of questions that can be adapted by companies in monitoring and evaluating recruiter performance.

TOOL 1: Sample Strategies for Managing Risk in Recruitment, Selection and Hiring

There are many proactive steps that companies can take to manage the risk of forced labor and human trafficking in recruitment, selection and hiring.

Below are some of the more common red flags for forced labor and trafficking at these stages in the job cycle. In addition to the red flags themselves, consider the following management approaches that can help to mitigate the risks or address root causes so that risk is eliminated.


RED FLAG: WORKER DEBT DUE TO ILLEGAL OR EXCESSIVE RECRUITMENT FEES
A common source of risk in recruitment is a company’s lack of visibility into the recruitment process itself, including a lack of visibility into any payment transactions that are involved. The company may be simply unaware that recruiters hidden fees are being charged to jobseekers by recruiters or their subcontractors. There are many steps that can be taken to mitigate this risk.

Managing Risk during Recruitment, Selection and Hiring:

  • The company can require that its labor recruiters communicate an “employers pay” policy to applicants at the earliest part of the recruitment process. For example, this policy could be indicated in job vacancy ads and explained to applicants as part of a first interaction with recruiters (where applicable, this would entail informing applicants at their place of origin, before they arrive at recruitment centers).
  • The company can provide (or require labor recruiters to provide) successful applicants with a checklist of all expenses that employers will cover (consistent with the “employer pays” policy).

Managing Risk during Pre-Departure Orientation and Deployment:

  • The company can require all successful jobseekers to submit a list of all expenses incurred in the process of applying for the job, indicating to whom these expenses or fees were paid (e.g., transportation expenses, reservation fees, documents processing, medical tests, etc.).
  • A company representative can conduct the pre-departure orientation.
  • The company representative can explain the following during the pre-departure orientation:
    • The company’s “employers pay” policy;
    • All expenses and fees that the company will cover;
    • The company’s system for verifying the actual fees and expenses paid by workers in recruitment and hiring;
    • The company’s confidential procedures for workers to report any violations to the “employer pays” policy; and
    • The company’s protections and non-reprisal for workers who report violations, with an explanation of how the company guarantees this.
  • The company can include in its contracts with migrant workers the “employer pays” policy and a breakdown of all expenses and fees that the company will cover.

Managing Risk upon Arrival at the Host Facility:

  • The company can require all newly hired workers to submit a list of expenses incurred prior to arrival, with the receipts if available. The company can then compare these documents with the lists that were submitted by migrant workers at the pre-departure orientation and flag any discrepancies for further investigation.
  • The company can conduct validation interviews with newly hired workers upon arrival. Interviews with workers whose expense checklists were flagged should be prioritized. Independent translators should be used for these validation interviews, as opposed to translators provided or hired by the labor recruiter.
  • The company can have in place remediation procedures to respond to verified reports of noncompliance to its “employers pay” policy, including mechanisms to ensure reimbursement of any fees charged to workers.

 


RED FLAG: DECEPTION IN RECRUITMENT – CONTRACT SUBSTITUTION

Contract substitution that results in debt bondage, restrictions to freedom of movement, or labor trafficking is usually deliberate – it rarely stems from a mere process gap. In some cases, this risk can also stem from a labor recruiter’s desire to meet performance objectives. For example, if recruiters are required to deploy a certain number of workers to a factory at a particular time, they may use standard government-issued contracts which do not reflect the actual terms and conditions of employment to facilitate the deployment process. Instead, the actual terms and conditions are contained in the supplemental contract which the workers sign when they commence employment. 
Companies can take any or all of the following steps to mitigate these risks.

Managing Risk during Recruitment, Selection, and Hiring:

  • The company can take full responsibility for the translation of employment contracts into a language that migrant workers understand. The labor recruiter should not translate the employment contracts, nor should the company hire the labor recruiter to manage the translation of the contracts.
  • The company can directly supervise the signing of employment contracts. A company representative can be present on-site in the sending country where workers have been selected and hired when employment agreements are signed by workers.
  • Before contracts are signed, the company can orient the workers on the terms and conditions of the employment contract. If there is a need to use translators, these translators should be directly engaged by the company – the company should not use translators provided by the labor recruiter.

Managing Risk during Pre-Departure Orientation and Deployment:

  • A company representative can conduct the pre-departure orientation.
  • The pre-departure orientation can include the following information:
    • Contractual obligations;
    • Terms and conditions of work (wages, benefits, work hours, living accommodations, list of legal deductions, etc.);
    • Receiving country’s legal requirements; and
    • Company policies and procedures, including:
    • Mechanisms for workers to report violations by company staff, informal recruiter, and middlemen to company’s policies and ethical standards; and
    • Non-reprisal policy for whistleblowers.
  • The company representative can advise workers not to sign any new contracts or supplemental contract clauses before departure, or upon arrival in the receiving country.
  • The company representative can provide workers with a checklist and samples of documents that they will be required to sign in order to process their work permits and clear other legal requirements so that workers are aware of what to expect.

Managing Risk upon Arrival at the Host Facility:

  • A company representative can meet workers upon their arrival in the receiving country and supervise post-arrival procedures.
  • The company can require that labor recruiters provide workers and the company with copies of all documents that workers must sign as part of arrival in the receiving country.
  • Upon arrival at the host facility, the company can conduct interviews with workers themselves, to inquire about the signing of any supplemental or substitute contracts. The company can also review all the documents that labor recruiters required workers to sign.
  • The company can have in place remediation procedures to respond to verified reports of the signing of supplemental or substitute contracts.

Throughout the recruiting and hiring process, companies can minimize the risk of forced labor associated with outsourcing recruitment and hiring by establishing and maintaining lines of direct communication with migrant workers. Whether by providing workers information of what to expect throughout the pre-deployment, deployment, and orientation process; directly supervising the contract signing process; conducting validation interviews with workers on arrival at the facility; or incorporating any of the other suggestions above; companies can ensure that aspects of recruiting and hiring conform with their commitment to ending forced labor.

 

TOOL 2: Monitoring the Performance of Labor Recruiters – Introduction and Key Issues of Concern

This tool provides an introduction to the rationale and purpose of the labor recruiter assessment, who should conduct it, and an overview of what information should be gathered. It also provides some detail as to the key areas of concern in a labor recruiter assessment.

This tool can be used in conjunction with sets of assessment questions for recruiters, workers, and documents review that are also found in this section of the Fair Hiring Toolkit.


INTRODUCTION
The purpose of a labor recruiter performance assessment is to verify whether or not the recruiter is performing according to the legal, ethical, and social responsibility requirements that the company has defined.

The labor recruiter performance assessment is a key element in the systems approach to social responsibility. Companies need visibility into how their labor recruiters operate, and a way to measure recruiter performance against social responsibility benchmarks. Performance assessment is especially critical where the protection of migrant workers against human trafficking and forced labor is concerned.

Having an assessment procedure in place gives companies an objective basis for management decisions, and helps protect against hidden abuses. It also drives labor recruiters toward performance effectiveness and continuous improvement, and toward meeting agreed upon goals related to business and social responsibility.

Verité recommends that a designated monitoring team, preferably from the human resources department, should perform the assessment. Members of the team should be knowledgeable in the company’s social responsibility program and trained to conduct a thorough, objective assessment. An independent third-party auditor may, alternatively, be engaged.

Individual companies should judge the best time for assessment based on the job cycle and other considerations. Where the outsourcing of recruitment and hiring is concerned, an assessment of the labor recruiter should be conducted soon after the migrant workers arrive at the facility. Assessments should also be conducted prior to contract renewal or in advance of a subsequent deployment of workers. Recruiters charged with aspects of on-site management should be assessed periodically. Where problems are found, follow up assessments to evaluate the success of any remediation procedures should be performed.

In essence, your assessment of the labor recruiter replicates the assessment process conducted of your facility by your internal auditors or by auditors contracted by customers. The actual performance assessment itself requires a process of triangulation – gathering and analyzing information from several sources. Verité recommends gathering information from all of the following sources, where possible and relevant:

  • Agency management officers and personnel;
  • Migrant workers;
  • External stakeholders, such as government agencies accrediting labor recruiters and NGOs that work with trafficking victims;
  • Documents, including:
    • Business records – license, registration, etc.
    • Payroll records
    • Fees and payment records
    • Worker documentation
    • Discipline records
    • Grievance records
  • Actual observations during physical inspections;
    • Living and dining areas
    • Offices of the recruiter agency.

KEY ISSUES OF CONCERN
This tool can act as a guide for a host facility, recruiter or a third-party monitor in assessing functional areas of recruiter performance that can become sources of risk and noncompliance to standards on forced labor.

This tool introduces some key issues that should be included in the labor recruiter assessment, including:

  • Recruitment fees;
  • On-Boarding, orientation and training;
  • Wages and benefits;
  • Loans, deposits and deductions;
  • Dormitory and housing;
  • Grievance mechanisms / Worker feedback and communication;
  • Human treatment; and
  • Document retention.

For each topic area, the need and context for screening is explained, followed by a list of information to gather, and an articulation of key red flags and risks to look out for.

In addition to the issues articulated below, you should also follow up on the issues raised during the initial recruiter screening, to ensure that processes have not changed and no additional risks have been introduced. Because the issue of recruitment fees is perhaps the most critical, where the risk of trafficking and forced labor is concerned, it is repeated in both sections of this Toolkit.


ASSESSMENT AREA: RECRUITMENT FEES

Why are you assessing the labor recruiter’s policy and procedures on recruitment fees?
There is always a risk that a labor recruiter has charged jobseekers unauthorized or illegal fees, or has forced jobseekers to pay for services at amounts or interest rates that are excessive. In such cases, workers may be entering a situation of debt bondage or forced labor even before they set foot at your facility.

It is therefore important that you communicate clearly to your labor recruiter which fees can and cannot be charged jobseekers. Oversight must also be in place to ensure that the labor recruiter abides by these rules.

It is difficult to find hard evidence of violations to the “employers pay” standard, because such fee-charge violations rarely have a paper trail, or the paper trail is “doctored up” to hide illegal fee charges. Workers are often the only source of information regarding violations of this standard. It is important that workers have a safe means for reporting violations directly to you, and that there is a credible and well-communicated procedure to investigate and respond to such reports. It is also important to levy penalties for violations of the employer pays policy, and to reimburse workers for any fee overcharges.

What information do you need to get?

  • A description of how the labor recruiter ensures compliance with the “employers pay” policy (e.g., the policy is included in work contracts, and sanctions are in place for noncompliance).
  • A list of expenses charged to jobseekers.
  • Mechanisms for jobseekers to report violations of company policy on recruitment fees.
  • Procedures for refunding fee overcharges.

What are some common risks and red flags?

  • There is no written commitment by the labor recruiter to adhere to the employers-pay policy.
  • There is no effective and safe procedure for workers to report ethical violations by internal staff or subcontractors of the employers-pay policy (e.g., workers are coached to lie about fees and expenses).
  • Jobseekers are charged a reservation fee and/or illegal deposits.
  • Illegal fees are charged to workers for processing of deployment documentation.
  • Jobseekers are charged excessive fees for mandatory skills training.
  • Jobseekers are charged fees beyond market rates for recruiter-owned or -operated accommodations during the pre-deployment period.

ASSESSMENT AREA: ON-BOARDING, ORIENTATION AND TRAINING

Why are you assessing the on-boarding, orientation, and training of migrant workers?
By assessing the on-boarding, orientation, and training of migrant workers, you will be able to understand how workers are informed about company policies and employment conditions; how the company ensures that workers clearly understand the policies and conditions; and whether these policies and conditions are explained to workers in a language that they understand.

You also need to check if the information provided to the workers during the on-boarding process are similar to the ones they receive prior to their start of employment in the facility. It is particularly important to know whether the terms and conditions that the workers agreed to are consistent with the ones offered to them at the start of their employment, and if these terms and conditions are consistent with actual practice. Most workers will have signed a contract in their country of origin which was likely approved by their sending country authority. In most cases, these contracts are patterned after standard government contracts to expedite workers deployment abroad. However, upon arrival in the receiving country, some companies ask workers to sign supplemental agreements. These agreements often contain additional terms and conditions that can be unfavorable to workers but workers have little leverage to refuse to sign.

You also need to understand if the company also provides training programs for migrant workers and whether these are in place and are responsive to the needs of the company and the worker.

What information do you need to get?

  • On-Boarding Program:
    • Schedule
    • Areas covered
    • Documentation
    • Training Materials
  • Training Program: 
    • Description of training programs provided by the recruiter or the facility
  • Skills improvement training program
  • Worker education and awareness training
  • Legally-mandated certification and skills programs
  • Language Training:
    • Hand-outs, worker’s copy of training materials
    • Skills assessment or skills gap assessment
  • Languages spoken by the workers
  • Training Fees: 
    • Training costs
    • Who is responsible for training costs?
  • Trainers: 
    • What qualifications do the trainers have?
    • Is training run by facility staff or is it outsourced?
  • Worker performance review practices and procedures;
  • Worker education and communication of performance review policy and procedures; and
  • Skill grade/classification of workers:
    • Organizational structure of facility
    • Pay structure.

What are some common risks and red flags?

  • There are no clear procedures for conducting on-boarding, orientation, and training of new hires;
  • Information provided to workers in on-boarding, orientation, and training practices are not consistent with company policies and procedures;
  • On-boarding, orientation, and training are conducted by recruiter or subcontractor, which may result in inconsistent messaging and insufficient information;
  • The on-boarding, orientation, and training are conducted in a language workers do not understand;
  • Workers are required to sign supplemental agreements during the on-boarding process.
  • Labor recruiters charge training fees to workers; or
  • A training bond or a condition for acquiring training that can result in workers being unable to terminate their contract freely (i.e., the worker was required to pay a bond upon hire, a portion of which was to pay for training).

ASSESSMENT AREA: COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS

Why are you assessing your company’s compensation and benefits system?
The areas of compensation and benefits are closely tied to the risks of forced labor as workers can become involuntarily tied to the job due to a company’s or recruiter’s wage practices. Specific risks include underpayment of wages and unauthorized deductions and withholdings. An assessment will help you determine if workers are paid the wage rate that was promised to them; if their wages are paid in the manner that the workers agreed to; and if workers are able to terminate their employment without sacrificing pay for hours previously worked. If deductions or withholdings are made from workers’ pay, an assessment will help you determine if this is a legally allowed practice and if it could result in forced labor.

What information do you need to get?

  • What is the legal minimum wage applicable to the facility?
  • What are the legal requirements on wages, including overtime pay, and benefits?
  • Pay practices:
    • How are wages paid?
    • What are the forms of wage payments (cash, deposit in worker’s bank account, etc.)?
    • Who has access to worker’s payroll bank account?
    • Pay cycle
  • Payroll period
  • Pay dates (important: determine number of days lapsed from last day of payroll period to pay day)
  • Pay structure: 
    • What is the basic pay rate?
    • What are the overtime rates and other non-regular rates (holiday, rest day, etc.)?
    • Are any cash allowances given?
    • Are any productivity incentives awarded?
    • Are any bonuses given?
  • Pay deductions:
    • Are there any legally mandated deductions (e.g. social security premiums)?
    • Other deductions
    • Is any type of savings program implemented?
  • If yes, is this savings program implemented with or without the workers consent?
  • Benefits:
    • Are legally mandated benefits provided?
    • Which additional benefits are provided by the company?
  • Worker Education on Wages and Benefits:
    • How are workers educated on wage calculations?
    • How are workers educated on accessing benefits?

What are some common risks and red flags?

  • Underpayment or delayed payment of wages;
  • Labor recruiters have access to workers’ bank accounts, resulting in:
    • Forced savings
    • Illegal deductions
  • Workers are uninformed or misinformed about wage rates and deductions; or
  • No pay slips are provided.

ASSESSMENT AREA: LOANS, DEPOSITS, AND DEDUCTIONS

Why are you assessing fees, deposits, and deductions?
Excessive or illegal fees heighten workers’ vulnerability to forced labor. In order to have a clear picture of the vulnerability of your workforce to debt bondage and forced labor, you will want a full accounting of all fees, deposits and deductions to which migrant workers are subject. To determine workers’ vulnerability it is important to understand the purpose, legality, and methods of levy for each of the fees, deposits, and deductions. In addition, you will need to know how workers repay these fees and whether repayment schemes restrict workers’ ability to terminate their employment.

What information do you need to get?

  • Fees and loans due to recruiters:
    • What is the schedule of payments?
    • What are the terms of repayment?
    • What is the fee schedule or line items for the fees?
    • What out-of-pocket payments to facility or to recruiter is the worker required to make?
  • Deposits, bonds and savings:
    • Security bond or deposit
    • Schedule of payments
    • Terms of payment
    • Terms for returning savings to workers
  • Recruiter- or company-managed savings:
    • Where the savings are kept or deposited. If bank account, who has access? Is it an ATM account or bankbook account? Who keeps the bank book?
    • Getting workers’ consent for savings
    • Do workers have access to their savings?
    • What are the terms for returning savings to workers
  • Deductions:
    • Penalties, fines
    • Meals
    • Housing
    • Uniforms
    • Tools
  • Documentation of payments:
    • Are all pay deductions recorded in pay slips? If final deductions are taken, are they recorded? (Net pay as reflected in pay slip versus pay deposited in worker’s account?)
    • Worker’s copy of proof of payment

What are some common risks and red flags?

  • Workers are charged recruiter fees for on-site management;
  • Workers are induced or encouraged to take loans from the recruiter or the facility at excessive interest rates or unreasonable terms of payment;
  • Workers are required to lodge deposits before taking up employment, and during employment;
  • Workers are ill-informed about the terms or the full amount of loans or deductions; or
  • Automatic deductions for loan payments are made against workers’ salary.

ASSESSMENT AREA: DORMITORY AND HOUSING

Why are you assessing housing and dormitory?
You will want to know the full details of the housing provided to migrant workers, especially if these workers have no choice but to rely on the receiving-country labor recruiter or the host facility to secure their housing.

You will want to check if the housing provided to workers is comfortable, safe, and secure; and whether workers can freely enter or leave the premises. You need to check the house or dormitory rules and regulations, and whether there are unreasonable restrictions on workers’ freedom of movement. Inquiring about the security policy of the dormitory also alerts to safety risks. For example, pad-locking the gate from the inside after curfew hours with the key not readily accessible may result in workers getting trapped inside in case of fire.

You need to know who is managing the dormitory, what their specific functional tasks are, and if they are properly trained or equipped to fulfill the task. The related expenses, if the accommodations are not provided for free, should also be looked into. You need to know how much is charged, how payments are collected, and whether these are reasonable rates.

What information do you need to get?

  • Who manages the living quarters?;
  • Who bears the overhead expenses of the dormitory?;
  • Rules on leaving and entering the living quarters;
  • Other dormitory security procedures;
  • Rules while in the dormitory;
  • House-keeping practices; and
  • Emergency preparedness procedures.

What are some common risks and red flags?

  • Workers do not secure their housing accommodations themselves;
  • Recruiters or employers require workers to stay in recruiter-controlled or company-controlled housing facilities;
  • Curfews are implemented in the dormitories, and workers are unable to enter or leave the premises freely;
  • There are penalties for staying out, or for not returning to the dormitory or housing facility at a designated time;
  • Gates are closed at designated times; or
  • Security personnel are instructed to restrict workers from leaving or entering the dormitory or housing facility.

ASSESSMENT AREA: DISCIPLINE AND TERMINATION

Why are you assessing the facility’s policy and practices on discipline and termination?
Disciplinary procedures – whether from the facility or recruiter — should be based on a clear set of rules and regulations that apply to all workers, regardless of employment status, or nationality and should include the right to due process. The process for termination should be legal and fair. Migrant workers should be able to refuse overtime, for example, without fearing early termination of their contract. Further, conditions for voluntary termination of the contract should not be so prohibitive that workers are unable to leave a job.

What information do you need to get?

  • What are standard rules and regulations, code of discipline?
    • Are there categories of misconduct?
  • Which misconduct is subject to a series of warnings? Which is subject to immediate termination?
  • Procedure for investigating reports of disciplinary violations:
    • How are workers notified of a disciplinary citation?
    • What processes are in place for workers to appeal or challenge a disciplinary action?
  • Description of disciplinary action taken by management:
    • Are escalating warnings issued to workers in response to behavior or performance issues?
  • Records kept on disciplinary proceedings;
  • Terms and conditions to terminate contract:
    • What penalties for not completing duration of contract?
  • Process for clearing resigned or terminated worker:
    • When do resigned or terminated worker get their last wages?
  • Training and education:
    • How are managers and supervisors trained on disciplinary policy?
    • How are workers trained on discipline policy?

What are some common risks and red flags?

  • Managers and supervisors are not adequately trained to implement the company’s policy on discipline;
  • Workers are not aware of the company’s policy on discipline;
  • Workers are not aware of performance objectives and the parameters against which they are evaluated;
  • Management does not document disciplinary proceedings;
  • Punitive deductions, unpaid work or forced overtime are a part of disciplinary measures; or
  • There are penalties for early contract termination.

ASSESSMENT AREA: WORKER DOCUMENTATION

Why are you assessing the recruiter’s or host facility’s practices for storing and securing worker’s documents?
It is critical to determine if the company or recruiter holds workers’ original documents such as passports. Without access to such documents, workers are effectively bound to the worksite. If passports are held, they should be submitted voluntarily and workers should have unencumbered access through a clear process. The key question to consider is whether practices around worker documentation retention create situations where the workers’ freedom of movement, or ability to terminate contract for reasonable cause, are restricted.

What information do you need to get?

  • Documentary requirements when applying for the job;
    • Which documents are workers required to show to the facility or recruiter: original, government-certified, or photocopy?
    • Which documents are workers required to submit to the facility or recruiter: original, government-certified, or photocopy?
  • Documentary requirements upon hire;
    • Which documents are workers required to submit to the facility or recruiter upon hire: original, government-certified, or photocopy?
    • Which original documents are held by the facility or recruiter? When are they handed over to the factory or recruiter? Where are documents stored? Who requests workers documents? What reason is given for the document retention? If used for processing of other legal papers, are they immediately returned to the worker after processing?
  • Procedure and practices for filing and keeping workers’ documents;
    • (If facility or recruiter keeps the worker’s travel and work documents) What facility- or recruiter-provided storage systems are provided to workers to keep their travel and work documents?
    • How can workers’ access their documents?
    • Do workers give their consent in submitting their documents?

What are some common risks and red flags?

  • Workers are required to surrender their passports and other key documents to the recruiter or employer;
  • Passports are taken without the workers’ full and informed consent;
  • Passports are taken from workers for safekeeping, and workers are made to sign a waiver indicating their consent;
  • Workers are required to post a bond or pay a deposit in order to retrieve passports.
  • Workers are misinformed about their right to secure their own documents; or
  • Workers are not provided means to secure their own documents.

The above information can be helpful to companies as they embark on a labor recruiter assessment. Companies should keep these key issues of concern at the forefront of the assessment process.

Tool 3: Conducting Interviews with Labor Recruiters

This tool is designed for use by company social auditors. It can be used by companies to improve their own audit protocols by expanding the audit interview process to include labor recruiters that provide workers to the company, or to a given company facility. The tool is oriented to help assess the recruitment and hiring practices of labor recruiters integrated into their supply chain. It is consistent with the code provisions and benchmarks provided in this toolkit, and complementary to the corresponding management and worker interview tools.


GENERAL PROFILE OF THE LABOR RECRUITER AND ITS OPERATIONS
Auditors should start their labor recruiter audit by gathering basic information about the recruiter and its business. This can help to orient the rest of the interview with the labor recruiter and identify any potential issues that require follow-up or further discussion. It can also provide the auditor with an opportunity to explore the relationship between the labor recruiter and the companies and countries to which it sends labor.

  • What is the name of the labor recruiter? Its address? The names of its owners and their nationalities? And the names and addresses of other labor agencies operated by the owners?
  • Do the owners of the labor recruitment have any other businesses? What are the names, locations and nature of those businesses?
  • How many years has the labor recruiter been in the business of supplying manpower?
  • What are the main services that the labor recruiter provides?
  • What types of migrant workers does the labor recruiter provide? Do these include professional, skilled, semi-skilled or low-skilled migrant workers? In what industry or industries does the labor recruiter place migrant workers? What countries does the labor recruiter supply labor to?
  • Does the labor recruiter work with local partners in each country where it provides labor? Who are the local partners the labor recruiter works with for the facility in question? What are their names, addresses and complete contact information?
  • Has the labor recruiter ever paid money to a facility to “win” a contract for labor provision?
  • How many years has the labor recruiter provided migrant workers to this particular facility?
  • Does the contract signed between the labor recruiter and the facility contain clauses on social compliance, such as measures to prevent forced labor and human trafficking?

GENERAL PROFILE OF THE MIGRANT WORKERS PLACED WITH THE FACILITY
It is important for the auditor to gain close insight into the migrant workers that are placed by the labor recruiter. This can be done by speaking with the labor recruiter directly, as well as by speaking with the recruiter’s sub-agents and local partners. However, it is essential to cross-check information gained from recruiters and subagents with interviews with representative migrant workers at each facility. This triangulation will help the auditor identify each of the migrant workers placed by the labor recruiter, their national and personal details, and basic information about their employment contract and relationship.

  • How many migrant workers has the labor recruiter placed with the facility?
  • What are the countries of origin of the migrant workers placed with the facility? How many workers are rom each country? What is the duration of contracts?
  • Does the labor recruiter have a complete list of migrant workers placed with the facility, including the following information:
      • Names;
      • Workstation department or shift;
      • Date of hire;
      • Home country address of workers and phone numbers; and
      • Emergency contact information.

LEGAL HISTORY AND SOCIAL COMPLIANCE
In addition to gathering basic information about the labor recruiter’s business and the migrant workers it has placed, it will be important for the auditor to assess the legal and social compliance of the labor recruiter, as well as its systems for staying up to date on new regulations or regulatory changes that affect businesses sending workers overseas. Discussions can focus on public licensing or certification for labor recruiters, company policies on social responsibility and the procedures or overall management system the labor recruiter has in place to ensure protection of migrant workers.

  • Is the labor recruiter legally registered and licensed to operate in each country from which it sends workers?
  • What aspects of the labor recruiter’s business are audited or inspected by local government authorities? How often does this audit or inspection occur?
  • What system does the labor recruiter have in place to ensure that it stays up-to-date on new legal and regulatory developments concerning migrant workers in the country or countries where it places workers? Does the labor recruiter have an implementing structure, an accountable officer, and clear procedures to guarantee that its policies are compliant with relevant laws and regulations?
  • Has the labor recruiter ever been cited or penalized by local or foreign authorities for any reason relating to its practices within the last five years? If yes, have these conditions been corrected to the satisfaction of the inspecting/citing authority?
  • Are there any civil or criminal legal actions against the owner(s) pending? If yes, what are the details of this action?
  • Does the labor recruiter have a code of conduct that explicitly prohibits forced labor and human trafficking, and sets out protective measures for migrant workers?

RECRUITMENT AND HIRING PROCESS
A focus on the details of the recruitment and hiring process used by the labor recruiter will illuminate any potential risks that may face migrant workers placed by the labor recruiter. Auditors should seek to understand the full scope of this process, including the recruitment, selection, contracting, hiring and transportation stages. They should also be aware of the actors involved at each stage, for example whether or not sub-agents are used to recruit migrant workers from further afield. This stage of the labor recruiter interview also opens the door to discussing transparency in recruitment and the information that is provided to migrant workers in the pre-departure phase.

  • What is the step-by-step process used by the labor recruiter for recruiting migrant workers, including information about recruitment and applicant selection; documents processing; the contracting process and signature of employment contracts; recruitment fees; and pre-departure briefing?
  • Does the labor recruiter have measures in place to ensure that its representatives and sub-agents working on its behalf provide migrant workers with true and accurate details about working, employment and living conditions at the time of recruitment?
  • Does the labor recruiter provide pre-departure orientation and training to migrant workers in order to review:
      • Contractual obligations;
      • Employee and employer rights and obligations;
      • Terms and conditions of work;
      • Living conditions;
      • Company policies; and
      • Grievance mechanisms in place for workers?

RECRUITMENT FEES AND EXPENSES
The fees and expenses charged to migrant workers by labor recruiters that recruit, hire, send and receive them overseas can create grave vulnerability to debt bondage and forced labor. Auditors will need to probe for this carefully and with a variety of questions and interview techniques.

Fees can be charged by the labor recruiter, its sub-agents or local partners. Fees might be deducted from migrant workers’ wages or paid up-front by the migrant worker. The facility may or may not know about the extent of the fees that have been charged.

It is the auditor’s responsibility to uncover this complexity and to cross-check the information with statements made by facility managers and migrant workers.

The following issues should be included in the audit of a facility that is host to migrant workers.

  • Do migrant workers pay a fee in their country of origin or the receiving country for labor-recruitment services? How much do they have to pay, and what do these fees cover?
      • Reservation or Commitment Fee: Is this amount returned or refunded to the worker if he or she is not selected for employment?
      • Service, Placement or Recruitment fee: Is this fee paid up-front and directly to the labor recruiter, or is it deducted from the worker’s salary at the facility?
      • Processing of Travel Documents, Visas and Work Permits: Is a separate fee charged for this or is this included in the recruitment fee?
      • Registration for Skills Testing or Certification: Is this charge included in the recruitment fee or do workers pay for this directly to the government labor recruiter providing the service?
      • Mandatory Physical, Health or Medical Tests Required by Sending and Receiving Country
      • Language Training or Pre-departure Orientation or Seminar
      • Air Travel or Other Transportation Costs: Are such costs included in the recruitment fee, paid by the worker up-front, or paid by the facility?
      • Surety Bond or Deposit
      • Other Fees
        • Does the labor recruiter provide workers with a written itemized breakdown of the fees and expenses they pay?
        • Upon arrival at the place of employment, are workers charged further fees by the labor recruiter or its local partners, for example a labor recruitment fee or surety bond that is paid on-site?
        • Does the labor recruiter or facility deduct a portion of the recruitment fee from migrant workers’ salaries? If yes, how much is deducted per month, and for how many months?
        • Are migrant workers required to pay a deposit to hold a contract? How much is the deposit, and is it paid to the labor recruiter, facility or both? Under what circumstances and how do workers get their deposit back?

EMPLOYMENT CONTRACTS
Auditors will also want to discuss the contracting process and the nature of employment contracts with labor recruiters. The key question here concerns contract substitution, a process whereby an original contract that has been signed by a migrant worker is replaced by another – or supplemented with additional pages – that worsen the conditions agreed to. However, there are other issues at play that the auditor should also seek to address. These include how and where the contract was signed, and the language in which it was written. To verify the information provided by recruiters, the auditor may wish to review copies of employment contracts provided to migrant workers during the document review process.

  • Who are migrant workers under contract to: the labor recruiter, the facility, or both?
  • Are employment contracts with migrant workers signed in the country of origin, upon arrival at the location of employment, or both?
  • How does the labor recruiter guarantee that migrant workers understand the contents of the employment contract before they sign it?
  • Is the contract written in a language that migrant workers understand?
  • Are migrant workers given a copy of their signed contract?
  • What measures does the labor recruiter have in place to ensure that its representatives and sub-agents do not misrepresent the nature of the job offered at the time of recruitment or hiring?
  • Does the labor recruiter have measures in place to ensure that the original contracts signed by migrant workers are not amended in any way by the facility, representatives of the labor recruiter itself, or its local partner in the receiving country, unless to improve upon the migrant worker’s originally anticipated employment conditions? Are such changes made only with the full knowledge and consent of the migrant worker concerned?

DOCUMENT RETENTION
Auditors should also discuss the issue of document retention with labor recruiters. This will be particularly important in cases where labor recruiters act as the on-site managers of the workers they place and where they are responsible for general human resources management. It will also be important in those cases where migrant workers reside in labor recruiter-operated dormitories. If the facility operates in a jurisdiction where employers are required to maintain migrant workers’ travel documents, the auditor will also want to discuss any mechanisms the labor recruiter has in place to allow workers free access to their documents.

  • Does the labor recruiter, its local partner or facility ever hold migrant workers’ passports or other valuable items (e.g. bank books or ATM cards)? If yes, is this legally required?
  • If the labor recruiter, its local partner or facility holds passports for legal reasons or by request of the worker:
      • Do workers have unrestricted access to them at any time?
      • Are workers provided with an exact copy of the documentation when it is not in their possession?
      • Has the labor recruiter, local partner or facility nominated a responsible person to ensure that workers have free access to their documents upon demand?
      • Does the labor recruiter notify workers of these conditions and procedures in advance?

DEPOSITS
Security deposits are sometimes charged by labor recruiters to prevent migrant workers from leaving the employer and finding a new job. They are frequently referred to as “runaway insurance”. It is important for the auditor to review this issue to determine whether such a charge has been made, who made it, and the conditions under which workers get it back.

  • Are migrant workers ever required to pay a deposit or bond of any kind to the labor recruiter, its local partner or the facility during the recruitment process or at any other time during employment?
  • How much is this deposit or bond? When and how is this money returned to workers?

WAGES AND WAGE DEDUCTIONS
The auditor should discuss wage payment practices and deductions with labor recruiters when they act as the formal employer of migrant workers at the facility. If this is not the case, the labor recruiter will have little to provide at this stage of the interview. Auditors should also speak with labor recruiters about any advances or loans they provide to workers, for example to cover recruitment fees or expenses. This should address loan conditions, interest rates and financing periods to ensure worker consent, transparency and ethical behavior.

  • Does the labor recruiter, its local partner or facility pay migrant workers?
  • If the labor recruiter or its partner pays workers, when and at what frequency are they paid?
  • Are wage payments ever delayed or withheld? If yes, under what circumstances has this occurred?
  • Are migrant workers given a pay slip or wage statement on payday? Does this pay slip clearly indicate wage calculations and any deductions made from their salary?
  • How does the labor recruiter ensure that migrant workers are paid at the same basic rate as local workers?
  • Does the labor recruiter make any deductions or withholdings from workers’ pay? If yes, how much is deducted, and what do these deductions cover? Are these deductions stipulated in workers’ contracts? Are they made with workers’ knowledge and consent?
  • Does the labor recruiter or its local partner deduct for meals or housing? If yes, do migrant workers have the option to withdraw from food and housing provisions?
  • Does the labor recruiter ever provide loans to migrant workers for recruitment fees? What amount is provided? What is the interest rate on the loan and the financing period? Are loan agreements or advances concluded with the full knowledge and consent of workers?
  • If migrant workers borrow money from the labor recruiter , how do they pay the loan back? Is it paid in cash to the labor recruiter or facility, deducted from paychecks, or another method? How much do workers pay monthly, and how many months do they have to pay for the loan?
  • Does the labor recruiter, local partner or facility deduct any amount from workers’ salaries as part of a savings program? How much is deducted? Is this deduction voluntary? Are savings kept at a bank account in the country of origin or the receiving country? Do workers have full control and access to their savings at all times? Does anyone else have access to workers’ savings or authority to withdraw money? When do workers get their savings back?

COMPULSORY OR INVOLUNTARY OVERTIME
A key form of forced labor that all workers, including migrant workers, can face is compulsory or involuntary overtime beyond the limits established by national law. If the labor recruiter is responsible for the general management of the workers it places with the facility (including hours of work and overtime), the auditor should discuss this in order to determine what labor recruiter policies and procedures are and the measures the labor recruiter has in place to guarantee overtime is always voluntary.

  • Are workers ever required by the labor recruiter, its local partner or the facility to work more overtime than allowed by national law? What are the circumstances of such requirements?
  • When overtime is necessary, are workers free to refuse it? Does the labor recruiter or facility ever punish workers for refusing to work overtime?

FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT AND PERSONAL FREEDOM
Restrictions on the freedom of movement and personal freedom of migrant workers can occur in the workplace and in labor recruiter- or employer-operated residences. When speaking with labor recruiters about this, auditors should determine whether such restrictions exist and, if so, why and can they be considered reasonable? Auditors should also discuss in detail any labor recruiter-operated dormitories, if they exist, and the living conditions that face workers there.

  • Does the labor recruiter or its local partner place any restrictions on migrant workers’ freedom of movement in the workplace? What are these restrictions and the reasons for them?
  • Does the labor recruiter provide residence to migrant workers as part of its service? What is the name and address of the dormitory or hostel?
  • Are migrant workers required to live in such facilities or are they free to reside elsewhere?
  • Do migrant workers pay for this accommodation? How much do they pay per month? Is the amount they pay commensurate to or lower than market rates? How do workers pay for this accommodation?
  • Are there any restrictions on movement for migrant workers within such accommodation or outside working hours? Does the residence have a curfew? Are workers allowed to receive guests or visitors?

WORKPLACE DISCIPLINE
Disciplinary procedures in the workplace will only be the responsibility of labor recruiters if they manage workers directly. If this is the case, auditors should assess whether monetary fines are ever levied for workplace misconduct and, if so, under what circumstances; and whether the labor recruiters’ sanctions ever result in compulsory labor. Information gathered at this stage of the labor recruiter interview can be cross checked with disciplinary records and statements from workers.

  • Who is responsible for workplace discipline in the facility? Are there any parties aside from the facility involved in disciplining workers, for example the labor recruiter or its local partner, or a dormitory representative?
  • What steps are taken for disciplining a worker? Are monetary fines ever levied for misconduct? If so, under what circumstances, for what types of offense, how much is charged, and how are these payments made?
  • Do disciplinary sanctions ever involve compulsory work? If they do, under what circumstances does this occur?
  • What types of misconduct carry the penalty of dismissal and repatriation? Does the labor recruiter have a clear process that includes credible investigation before workers are terminated and repatriated?
  • Are there any penalties for migrant workers who quit before their contract expires? In such cases, who pays for their return airfare or transportation?
  • Are there any penalties for migrant workers who are terminated or fired before their contract expires? In such cases, who pays for their return airfare or transportation?

THREAT OF VIOLENCE AND INTIMIDATION
Threats of violence, harassment and intimidation of any kind should be strictly prohibited by the labor recruiter. Auditors can use this opportunity to discuss company policy, awareness raising efforts, sensitization and training for labor recruiters and sub-agents, and any specific procedures the labor recruiter has in place to address instances of such abuse if they occur.

  • Does the labor recruiter have a clear policy that strictly prohibits the following:
      • Verbal abuse, harassment or intimidation?
      • Physical abuse, corporal punishment?
      • Sexual harassment or abuse?
  • Have there been any instances of such abuse involving a labor recruiter representative or local partner?

GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE
An effective and trustworthy grievance procedure or complaints mechanism for migrant workers is an important part of taking preventive and corrective action against abuse in the workplace and in the recruitment and hiring process. Auditors should seek to assess the labor recruiter’s procedure for receiving complaints and determine whether workers are free to raise the issues they have, whether these pertain to the employment practices of the facility or conditions related to the labor recruiter, its sub-agents or local partners.

  • Has the labor recruiter nominated a representative to receive and process complaints from migrant workers? Does this representative speak the language(s) of migrant workers?
  • Does the labor recruiter have an assigned unit or staff representative to receive and process workers’ reports of harassment or abuse?
  • What are the labor recruiter’s procedures for dealing with harassment and abuse? Do these include reporting, investigation, follow-up and sanctions?

TERMINATION OF EMPLOYMENT
In discussing termination of employment with labor recruiters, auditors may wish to assess resignation procedures, notice periods and policies regarding repatriation under such circumstances. The key in this case is to ensure that workers suffer no penalty or threat of penalty in resigning or terminating their contract, as long as they do so with reasonable notice as required by law.

  • What is the labor recruiter’s policy and procedure for resignation? Are migrant workers free to resign at any time, given reasonable notice?
  • Are there any penalties for migrant workers who terminate their contract before its end-date? What are those penalties?
  • Does the labor recruiter or its local partner use any deceptive or coercive means to restrict workers’ freedom to terminate employment?

TOOL 4: Conducting Interviews with Migrant Workers

This tool is designed as a set of sample interview topics for brands and social auditors to consider when conducting targeted migrant and foreign contract worker interviews. It is consistent with the code provisions and benchmarks provided in Section 1 of the Brand Toolkit and complementary to the management and labor recruiter interview topics provided elsewhere in this section. Brands can use this tool to help shape their own worker interview questionnaires, thus improving their auditors’ ability to identify possible cases of abuse or recruiter-induced forced labor.


RECRUITMENT AND HIRING
There are many stages in the recruitment and hiring process for migrant workers, and there may be many labor recruiters involved along the way. It is important for the auditor to discuss the recruitment and hiring process with migrant workers in order to better understand the process, actors, and circumstances involved in placing them at the facility. With every new recruiter’s involvement, another door is opened to the potential for abuse and malpractice. It is also important to discuss labor recruiter and facility orientation procedures to determine whether migrant workers are aware of key policies and procedures in the workplace and terms and condition of work before they start their job.

Here are some of the issues an auditor may wish to discuss with migrant workers:

  • How many labor recruiters were involved in migrant workers’ recruitment in the country of origin?
  • What is the name and address of each labor recruiter or agency involved in the country of origin?
  • At the time of recruitment, was the worker given accurate details about the job location, contract duration, anticipated earnings, working and employment conditions on the job, and living conditions?
  • Did the worker participate in a pre-departure orientation?
  • If yes, what did that orientation include? Did it review:
      • Contractual obligations;
      • Terms and conditions of work;
      • Rights and responsibilities on the job, and those of your employer;
      • Living conditions;
      • Company policies; and/or
      • Grievance mechanisms that are in place for the worker on the job?
  • When the worker arrived in the destination country, did s/he:
      • Receive accommodation;
      • Receive an orientation session at the facility;
      • Undergo a medical examination; and/or
      • Open a bank account?
  • Did the worker receive orientation on the facility’s personnel policies? If yes, what was addressed during the orientation?
      • Personnel policies;
      • Regular wages and hours;
      • Vacations, sick and personal leave;
      • Overtime hours and rates;
      • Grievance procedures;
      • Health and safety policies;
      • Benefits and deductions;
      • Discipline and termination; and/or
      • Harassment and abuse.
  • Was the worker given a copy of the facility personnel policies or employee handbook? If yes, was this handbook written in a language that the worker understands?
  • Are the facility policies, procedures and work instructions communicated to workers in language they understand?

RECRUITMENT FEES AND EXPENSES
In assessing risk factors for debt bondage of migrant workers, it is essential to obtain a thorough picture of all expenses incurred by the migrant worker in obtaining the job overseas, as well as the manner in which the worker financed these fees. Fees are referred to in various ways and serve various functions. The questions below will help you determine the full array of fees and expenses that migrant workers may have incurred in obtaining their job abroad, and the terms of any financing arrangements into with the worker may have entered. The auditor should be sure that the following issues are included in any assessment:

  • Did the worker pay a service, placement, or recruitment fee to the recruitment agency in the sending country? If yes, how much was this fee? Did the worker pay a fee to an individual or sub-agent of the agency? If yes, how much was this fee?
  • Did the worker pay a reservation or commitment fee? If yes, how much was this fee? Is the amount refundable and, if yes, when is it refunded? If no, is the amount deducted from the total cost of the recruitment fees charged to the worker?
  • Did the recruitment agency provide the worker with a written itemized breakdown of the fees and expenses paid? If yes, what did the fees and expenses cover? How much was each fee or expense?
  • Who arranged for the processing of the worker’s required travel documents, such as work permit, visa, and passport? Was a fee charged for this service? If so, how much was this fee?
  • Did the worker pay fees for any of the following:
      • To register for a skills test or certification;
      • For language-training;
      • For medical or physical examination; and/or
      • For a pre-departure briefing?
  • How much did the worker pay for travel costs (airfare or another mode of travel)? Was this cost included in service or recruitment fees charged by the labor recruiter, or paid directly to a travel agency? Will return travel be paid by the employer or worker?
  • Was the worker required to pay a labor recruiter’s fee in the receiving country? If yes, how much was this fee? Was it paid up-front, or is it deducted from the worker’s salary?
  • Did the worker pay a deposit or bond of any kind, such as a surety bond? If yes, how much did the worker pay? What was this deposit or bond for? To whom was it paid?
  • Was the worker required to pay any sort of levy or tax to obtain the job? If yes, how much and to whom?
  • Were any fees, expenses, levies, deposits or bonds charged to the worker paid up-front, or are these deducted from his or her pay?
  • Did the worker have to borrow any money to pay for recruitment fees and expenses? If yes, how much was borrowed? From whom did the money come? Is there an associated interest rate and, if yes, how much is this? How does the worker repay the loan? What is the repayment schedule?

CONTRACTS OF EMPLOYMENT
Formal and signed contracts of employment between the worker and facility or labor recruiter are legally binding agreements and a pre-requisite to providing employment protection to migrant or foreign contract workers. They are a cornerstone to monitoring social compliance and essential to clarifying the employment relationship and its terms and conditions. For auditors, when assessing the recruitment and hiring of migrant workers, it is necessary not only to examine copies of these contracts to determine wage levels and other entitlements under the contract; it is also necessary to understand how and when the contract was signed, and under what conditions. Consider discussing these issues with workers as an important part of your own worker interviews:

  • Did the worker sign an employment contract for the job? If yes, with whom was the contract signed: the facility or the labor recruiter?
  • Were the terms of the employment contract explained to the worker? If yes, who explained these terms to the worker? Does the worker fully understand the terms and conditions of the contract? If no, what parts are not understood?
  • When and where was the contract signed (e.g. prior to departure or upon arrival at the facility)?
  • In what language is the contract written and does the worker understand that language?
  • Was the worker given a copy of the contract to review prior to signing? Once signed, was he or she given a copy of the signed contract?
  • Did the worker have to sign two sets of employment contracts? If yes, were both sets the same in content and, if no, how were they different? Were these differences explained to the worker, and what was the reason given?
  • Are the details contained in the worker’s employment contract consistent with the details that were provided at the time of recruitment? If not, what has changed?
  • Are the actual terms and conditions on the job consistent with those that are described in the employment contract?
  • Was the worker’s original contract amended in any way following signature? If yes, do these amendments improve or worsen the worker’s employment conditions? Were these amendments made with the worker’s prior knowledge and informed, written consent?
  • Was the worker pressured or threatened in any way into accepting the job or any of the terms included in the employment contract?
  • Under what conditions can the contract be renewed?

DOCUMENT RETENTION
Confiscating or withholding personal documents can be a form of coercion that leaves migrant workers highly vulnerable to forced labor. When labor recruiters or brand or supplier facilities take away workers’ passports, residency or work permits, personal identity documents, or even ATM cards, this not only limits their freedom of movement and personal freedom; it effectively binds them to that employer or labor recruiter, restricting their ability to terminate employment or leave the job without the threat of losing this valuable property. In many cases, it also means that the worker is not able to take up a new job, access social benefits to which they may be entitled and is vulnerable to deportation or detention by immigration authorities. It is essential that auditor address these issues in their interviews with migrant workers:

  • Did the worker submit any original copies of government-issued identification, passports or work permits to the facility or receiving country labor recruiter? If yes, what was submitted (e.g., passport, residency permit, work authorization, identity documents, ATM or bank card, or other travel documents, for example the return portion of travel tickets)? What was the reason for this?
  • Are personal documents withheld due to legal requirements or did the worker request the facility to hold them? If yes:
      • Do workers have free and unhindered access to their documents?
      • What is the procedure for getting the documents back?
      • Are workers given an exact copy of the document when it is not in their possession?
      • Does the facility or labor recruiter nominate a responsible person to ensure that workers have free access to their documents upon demand?
      • Were workers given advanced notice of these requirements and procedures?
      • Have workers ever encountered lengthy or otherwise burdensome prerequisites when accessing their passport or other personal documentation?
  • Do workers have free access to a locked, secure storage space for their personal documents and valuables?

DEPOSITS
So-called “security deposits” or “runaway insurance” are sometimes used by labor recruiters or employers to limit migrant workers’ ability to terminate employment and find a new job. This “fee” is typically paid up-front at the time of recruitment, and is kept until the contract has been fulfilled. If the worker terminates their employment prior to the contract’s end date, they run the risk of losing their money. Auditors should be aware of this abuse, and discuss it directly with workers. Here are some of the issues an auditor may want to consider:

  • Did the worker pay a deposit or bond of any kind during the recruitment process?
  • Has a fee or bond been paid by workers at any other time during the employment relationship?
  • If yes is answered to either of these questions:
      • How much was the fee paid?
      • To whom was it paid?
      • When does the worker expect to get the deposit back?
      • What are the conditions under which the amount is returned?

WAGES AND WAGE DEDUCTIONS
Auditing wage and salary payments can be one of the most complex and challenging aspects of a social audit. This is no less the case when assessing wage conditions facing migrant and foreign contract workers who are highly vulnerable to debt bondage resulting from withheld wage payments, excessive deductions from wages, or fraudulent practices with regard to advances and loans provided by the facility or labor recruiter. To address this complexity and establish a clear picture of migrant worker wage conditions, auditors may wish to consider discussing the following with workers:

  • Who pays migrant workers’ wages? Are they paid by the facility or the labor recruiter?
  • How are workers paid (e.g. hourly, daily or piece rate; in cash, check or direct deposit), and are they paid at the same rate as local workers?
  • Do workers receive their pay on time? Have wage payments, or any portion of wages, ever been delayed or withheld? If yes, what were the circumstances of this?
  • Do workers receive a pay slip or wage statement on payday? If yes, is this pay slip in a language they understand, and does it clearly indicate wage calculations and any deductions that are made from the worker’s salary?
  • Are any deductions made from the worker’s salary? If yes, how much is deducted and what for (e.g. meals, transportation, lodging, utilities, uniform, tools, other)? Are these deductions made with the worker’s knowledge and consent? Are workers requested to sign a document to authorize the deduction(s)?
  • Do workers ever receive wages in the form of non-cash or “in-kind” payments? If yes, what percentage of the wage has been paid in this way?
  • Has the worker ever received an advance on his or her wages or a loan from the facility or labor recruiter? If yes, what were the terms of this loan, including the interest rate and financing period? Have the terms of the loan ever been changed without the worker’s consent?
  • Does the worker participate in a savings program sponsored by the labor recruiter or facility? If yes, is this program voluntary? Do workers sign a written consent form to authorize deductions for voluntary savings? Where are workers’ savings kept? If savings are kept in a bank, do workers have free access to their bank account? When do workers get their savings back? Have workers experienced any difficulties in accessing their savings or getting them back?
  • Is there anyone else, apart from the worker, who has access to his or her bank account, for example through an ATM card or power of attorney? Has the worker ever authorized another person to access their account to make a withdrawal? If yes, who else has such access?
  • Does the facility or labor recruiter limit in any way the worker’s freedom to dispose of their wages as they see fit?

COMPULSORY OR INVOLUNTARY OVERTIME
Compulsory overtime is a key form of forced labor that all workers can be subject to, not only migrant and foreign contract workers. However, the latter may be at greater risk of this abuse because of their heightened vulnerability, and the many pressure points that brand or supplier facilities, or labor recruiters, may have to exploit their vulnerability. Addressing this issue should be central to all worker interviews; it is even more important for discussions with migrant workers.

  • How often do workers have to work overtime, and for what reasons?
  • Is overtime at the facility always voluntary? If no, what are the circumstances involving involuntary overtime?
  • Are workers free to refuse overtime without threat or fear of punishment? What happens if a worker refuses to work overtime?
  • Are workers given advance notice by the facility or labor recruiter when overtime is required?

FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT AND PERSONAL FREEDOM
Restrictions on freedom of movement for migrant workers can exist in the workplace or in dormitories where they live. They can result from facility or labor recruiter policies; rules and regulations governing worker residences; the legal, regulatory or security environment; cultural norms or considerations; active threats, intimidation and harassment by a manager, labor recruiter, or security guard; and deceptive or hidden forms of coercion such as passport confiscation, which is addressed above. Some forms of restriction can be considered reasonable, such as policies relating to workplace discipline; while others are wholly unreasonable and highly abusive. To make sense of this complex issue, here are some of the topics that auditors may wish to discuss with workers concerning their freedom of movement and personal freedom:

  • Are there any restrictions on migrant workers’ freedom of movement in the workplace during working hours? If yes, what are these restrictions? Are they reasonable? Do security personnel ever restrict workers’ freedom of movement in the workplace for reasons other than workplace security?
  • Are workers ever restricted from or monitored when using the toilet facilities? Are they free to get drinking water whenever they wish?
  • Are workers free to perform religious obligations without restriction?
  • Are workers free to leave the workplace immediately after their shift? Are they able to get permission to leave the factory during work hours under reasonable circumstances? What is the procedure for requesting this permission (e.g. how many signatures are required to request a gate pass)?
  • If workers live in a dormitory provided or operated by the facility or labor recruiter, are they required to live there as a condition of recruitment or continued employment? Are workers free to leave the dormitory and reside elsewhere? Are they free to come and go as they please during non-working hours? If not, what are the restrictions on freedom of movement, and are they reasonable? Does the dormitory have a curfew? Are there any dormitory rules and regulations that unreasonably restrict workers’ personal freedom?

WORKPLACE DISCIPLINE
Disciplinary measures and, in particular, the penalty of dismissal and repatriation can be abused to threaten, take advantage of, and apply pressure on migrant workers. While some measures may be justified in reacting to misconduct, disciplinary measure should not result in compulsory labor or an obligation to work. It is important for the auditor to discuss disciplinary measures and determine that they are fair, objective, transparent, and communicated to workers in language they understand. Here are some of the issues auditors may wish to discuss:

  • What steps are taken for disciplining a worker?
  • What types of misconduct carry the penalty of dismissal and repatriation?
  • Is there a clear process that includes investigation before workers are terminated and repatriated?
  • Do workers feel that disciplinary practices are fair?
  • Are workers subject to punitive fines or deductions as a disciplinary measure?
  • Do deductions for tardiness or time missed ever exceed the wage equivalent of the time missed?
  • Do disciplinary measures ever involve forced or compulsory work as punishment for an workplace infraction?
  • Are workers ever forced to sign a letter of resignation?

THREAT OF VIOLENCE AND INTIMIDATION
Harassment, intimidation, and threats or use of violence can take many forms in the workplace or in facility – or labor recruiter-operated residences. They can be perpetrated by a supervisor, facility manager, recruiter representative, dormitory manager, security guard, or even a fellow worker at almost any stage of the employment relationship, including recruitment and hiring. The aim may be to frighten the worker or pressure them into accepting certain terms and conditions of employment or living conditions; or it may be to force them to work overtime or perform hazardous or life-threatening tasks. Whatever the case, there should be a zero tolerance policy in place to prevent such behavior, and migrant workers are a key potential source of information in determining facility or recruiter compliance with that policy. Auditors should consider discussing the following:

  • Have workers ever been subject to or witnessed verbal abuse, psychological harassment, intimidation, physical abuse, or sexual harassment? If yes, what happened, when and where did it happen, and who was involved? Is this abuse on-going? Was the incident(s) reported to facility management or the labor recruiter? What actions were taken to correct the abuse?
  • Are workers aware of factory policies and procedures for dealing with harassment and abuse complaints (e.g. reporting, investigation, follow-up, and sanctions)?
  • Does the facility conduct regular anti-harassment and abuse training for workers?

WORKER COMMUNICATION AND GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE
An effective complaints mechanism and grievance procedure in the workplace that allows migrant workers to confidentially raise issues about labor recruiter or facility practices or the conditions they face in the workplace or dormitory is an important element in taking corrective action against abuse and exploitation. It is a key first step in remediating existing problems, and doing so at the level where problems exist. However, in many cases, grievance procedures may not even exists; they may not be effective, trusted or used by migrant workers; or they may only apply to the facility and not to labor recruiters, where significant forms of abuse may occur. In this case, it is important for auditors to investigate fully, and discuss with workers the options they have available to them to raise questions and complaints.

  • How are issues or complaints from migrant workers brought to the attention of the facility or labor recruiter?
  • Is there a representative who receives and processes complaints? If yes, what is the position of this representative? Does this person speak the language of migrant workers? Are workers comfortable bringing their complaints to this person?
  • Is there a mechanism in place for workers to raise a grievance with someone other than their direct supervisor?
  • Is there an anonymous procedure to report grievances? What means are in place to protect the identity of the worker reporting the grievance?
  • Are the responses to grievances and actions taken to address them communicated to workers? If so, what is the main method of communication?
  • Do workers feel that complaints and grievance procedures are effective?
  • Are workers free to join or form a trade union? Has the facility done anything, including interference or penalties, to prevent workers from joining or forming a union?

TERMINATION OF EMPLOYMENT
The ability of migrant workers to terminate employment at any time without penalty and with reasonable notice is central to ensuring that they work in a free employment relationship. In speaking with migrants, auditors may wish to probe this issue, and seek to identify whether any limitations exist that prevent workers from terminating their contracts before they are finished.

  • Are migrant workers free to resign from their position without penalty prior to the end of their contract? If no, what are the penalties they face? Who pays for migrant workers’ return travel if they quit before their contract expires?
  • What is the required notice period for terminating a contract?
  • If the worker participates in a voluntary savings program facilitated by the employer or labor recruiter, does he or she have free access to all savings and monies owed at the time of contract termination?

 

TOOL 5: Conducting a Review of Documentation

A review of company and worker documentation is a core element of social auditing. Alongside interviews with management and workers, this review helps auditors to gain a clearer picture of working and employment conditions at the audited facility, shedding light on issues such as wage levels and deductions, working hours and any existing complaints and grievances raised by workers.

Auditors typically review a variety of documents. These include wage slips, company policies and procedures, contracts of employment, and all other files relevant to monitoring employment conditions face by workers in the facility. In auditing fair hiring and recruitment, this review is both deepened and extended. It is deepened to examine in greater detail the recruitment and employment conditions facing migrant workers; and it is extended beyond the facility and its immediate workforce, to include an essential review of labor recruiter operations and the workers that are recruited and managed by them. A fair hiring audit is a more thorough and comprehensive audit.

There are many steps that brands can take to integrate fair hiring principles into this stage of their audits. Below you will find a list of the documents you may want to review, along with an explanation of what to look for. This guidance is divided into two sections: first, the facility (brand or supplier) documents you can review; and second, the labor recruiter documents that are also important to examine.


DOCUMENTS FROM THE FACILITY

1. A copy of the signed contract between the facility and each labor recruiter that provides migrant workers to the facility.
Review the contract to ensure that obligations are specified on the following:

  • Services provided by the labor recruiter;
  • Expenses and fees covered by the facility and labor recruiter;
  • Recruitment fees;
  • Prohibition of forced labor and human trafficking;
  • Sanctions for non-compliance with contract terms relating to labor and human rights; and an
  • Itemized account and manner of deductions made by either the facility or the labor recruiter.

2. A complete list of all migrant and foreign contract workers in the facility.
When you review this list, make sure it includes the following information:

  • Full names and employee identification numbers of each worker;
  • Workstation department and work schedule and shift;
  • Date of hire;
  • Name of labor recruiter (both sending and receiving countries);
  • Home country address and contact information; and
  • Emergency contact information

3. A complete list of all labor recruiters providing workers to the facility, and other documentation.

For each recruiter, be sure to review the following:

  • Complete contact information;
  • Recruiter licensing and accreditation information;
  • Licensing and accreditation information for any sub-contractor or sub-agent used by the recruiter; and
  • Records of due diligence performed by the facility in screening and selecting labor recruiters.

4. All relevant facility policies and its operating procedures handbook.
A review of facility policies and procedures serves two basic functions: 1) it can help you identify the formal policy framework that has been adopted by the facility to address key labor issues relating to migrant workers; and 2) it can give you insight into the procedures developed by the facility to tackle human resource and other labor-related issues in the workplace. Review these materials – including human resource policies and codes of conduct – to evaluate their commitment to:

  • Prohibit forced labor and human trafficking, and all forms of deception and coercion in the recruitment, hiring and management of migrant workers;
  • Fair treatment for migrant workers with respect to:
      • Remuneration;
      • Hours of work;
      • Overtime arrangements;
      • Leave entitlements;
      • Membership in trade unions;
      • Accommodation; and
      • Benefits and social insurance.
  • Contract only with those labor recruiters that commit to charge no fees or expenses to workers for recruitment.
  • Prohibit the confiscation or withholding of worker passports or other valuable documents.
      • However, in the event that this is required by law or requested by workers, review facility procedures to ensure that a clear and transparent mechanism has been established to guarantee that workers have access to their valuables at any time upon demand.
  • Prohibit:
      • The collection of deposits, security payments or bonds at the time of recruitment and at any other time during the employment relationship;
      • Compulsory and involuntary overtime beyond the limit established by national law; and
      • Disciplinary sanctions that impose forced or compulsory work as a punishment for workplace infractions.
  • Human resource practices in recruitment, contracts of employment, wages, and working hours that minimize the risk of forced labor and human trafficking.
  • Guarantee worker freedom of movement and personal freedom in the management and operation of employer-operated residences.
  • Progressively establish an effective screening and selection process for contracting responsible labor recruiters that includes rigorous assessment tools and methodologies.

5. Personnel files of a representative number of migrant workers.
In reviewing the personnel files of migrant workers, make sure to collect the following information in addition to what you have reviewed in the complete list of migrant and foreign contract workers in the facility:

  • A copy of the worker’s passport or national identification card;
  • Name and contact information of the relevant labor recruiter;
  • Emergency contact information;
  • Disciplinary notices, if applicable; and the
  • Signed employment contract.

Review the employment contracts of each migrant worker to ensure that wage provisions meet legal or industry minimum standards. Contracts of employment should also:

  • Clearly state the circumstances in which workers can terminate their employment without penalty, given reasonable notice;
  • Specify the rights and responsibilities of workers with regard to:
      • Wages;
      • Hours of work;
      • Days off and annual leave; and
      • Disciplinary procedures that can result in termination.
  • Reveal no indications of contract substitution or the amendment of original contract provisions with those that are less favorable to the worker.

6. Personnel files of terminated migrant workers and those that have resigned.
Review the personnel files of terminated migrant workers and also those that have resigned. Be sure to document all of the above, with a particular view towards grievance and disciplinary procedures:

  • Personnel files of dismissed employees should include an accurate and detailed reason for dismissal, and severance pay documentation, where legally required.
  • Make sure these files reveal no evidence of violence, intimidation, harassment or verbal or physical threats and abuse in the workplace.

7. Wage slips and salary statements of migrant workers (see also the box provided below).

  • Review the wage slips or salary statements of migrant workers to ensure that:
      • Salaries correspond to the legal or industry minimum, and are commensurate to those of country nationals working in the same job or section; and
      • Wage calculations are made clearly and with transparency. There should be no evidence of unlawful or unauthorized deductions.
  • Review records relating to wage advances or loans provided to migrant workers. Make sure that:
      • They comply with the law;
      • Interest rates for their repayment are not excessive;
      • Repayment terms are fair; and that
      • Such records indicate advanced written agreement to the terms and conditions of the loan and its repayment signed by both parties.
  • Where facilities are required or requested by workers to remit their earnings, or part thereof, to a third party, review the relevant records to ensure that:
      • They indicate this is done with workers’ prior knowledge and full and voluntary consent; and that
      • Workers receive a receipt for the full amount remitted.

8. Facility training and orientation records.


DOCUMENTS FROM THE LABOR RECRUITER
Note: Labor recruiters may not be onsite during your audit of a particular facility. To ensure that you receive the documents you need to conduct a full review, consider contacting the recruiter prior to your site visit. Ask them to be ready to provide the following set of materials.

1. A copy of the labor recruiters’ license(s) to operate in the country where workers are recruited and where they are placed with the facility.

2. A copy of the signed contract between the labor recruiter and facility.

3. A complete list of migrant and foreign contract workers provided to the facility.
When you review this list, make sure it is consistent with that provided by the facility. It should include the following information:

      • Full name and employee identification number for each worker;
      • Workstation department and work schedule and shift;
      • Date of hire;
      • Name of labor recruiter (both in the sending and receiving country);
      • Home country address and contact information; and
      • Emergency contact information

4. A list of all sub-contractors or sub-agents used to provide workers to the facility.
A given labor recruiter operating in the receiving country and placing workers at the facility may, in fact, operate through an extensive network of sub-contracted labor recruiters or sub-agents located in either the sending or receiving country. It is important to ensure that each of these operates in full compliance with the law and respects the rights of workers they help to place. Through your review of documents, make sure to collect the following:

      • A copy of each sub-contractor’s or sub-agent’s license to operate in each jurisdiction from which they recruit workers;
      • Copies of the contracts signed between the labor recruiter and its sub-contractors and sub-agents;
      • The names and contact information for each sub-contractor and sub-agent; and
      • A list of the workers recruited by each sub-contractor.

Note: If the labor recruiter also acts as the formal employer or on-site manager of migrant workers, you will need to review documents relating to this function to gain insight into the human resources and other policies and practices of the recruiter. This has the potential to add an extra layer of complexity to the audit. A document review can help you sift through this complexity to establish whether migrant workers receive the protections they deserve.

5. Personnel files of a representative number of workers employed or managed by the labor recruiter.
Like the review of these files conducted with the facility, you should make sure to collect the following information in addition to what you have collected in the complete list of migrant and foreign contract workers provided by the labor recruiter:

      • A copy of worker passports or national identification cards;
      • Emergency contact information;
      • Disciplinary notices, if applicable; and the
      • Signed employment contract.

Review the employment contracts of each migrant worker to ensure that wage provisions meet legal or industry minimum standards. Contracts of employment should also:

  • Clearly state the circumstances in which workers can terminate their employment without penalty, given reasonable notice;
  • Specify the rights and responsibilities of workers with regard to:
      • Wages;
      • Hours of work;
      • Days off and annual leave; and
      • Disciplinary procedures that can result in termination.
  • Reveal no indications of contract substitution or the amendment of original contract provisions with those that are less favorable to the worker.

6. Personnel files of terminated workers and those that have resigned.
Review the personnel files of terminated migrant workers and also those that have resigned. Be sure to document all of the above, with a particular view towards grievance and disciplinary procedures:

  • Personnel files of dismissed employees should include an accurate and detailed reason for dismissal, and severance pay documentation, where legally required.
  • Make sure these files reveal no evidence of violence, intimidation, harassment or verbal or physical threats and abuse in the workplace.

7. All relevant labor recruiter policies and its operating procedures handbook.
Like the review of facility policies and procedures, a similar review of labor recruiter operations serves two basic functions: 1) to help the auditor identify the formal policy framework and standards that guide labor recruiter behavior with regard to the rights and protections of migrant workers; and 2) to give insight into the practices and procedures adopted by the recruiter, on its own or in co-operation with the facility, to address human resource and other issues in the workplace. Review recruiter policies and procedures – including their code of conduct provisions – with a view to the following:

  • Labor recruiter records should indicate that the company has an implementing structure, an accountable officer and clear procedures to ensure that policies are compliant with all relevant legislation and regulation.
  • Labor recruiter policies should clearly prohibit all forms of forced labor, human trafficking, and deception and coercion in the recruitment, hiring and management of migrant workers. They should further ensure that migrant workers are treated no less favorably than country nationals with respect to:
      • Remuneration;
      • Hours of work;
      • Overtime arrangements;
      • Leave entitlements;
      • Membership in trade unions;
      • Accommodation; and
      • Benefits and social insurance.
  • Labor recruiter policies and procedures should also:
      • Clearly indicate that no fees or expenses are charged to workers for job placement services;
      • Prohibit the confiscation or withholding of workers’ passports or other valuable documentation, unless required by law or requested voluntarily by workers;
      • Prohibit compulsory or involuntary overtime beyond the limits established by law, or a maximum of 12 hours per week where the law is silent on the issue;
      • Ensure that no unreasonable restrictions are levied to limit migrant workers’ freedom of movement and personal freedom; and
      • Prohibit disciplinary sanctions that impose forced or compulsory work as a punishment for workplace infractions.
  • Human resource practices of the recruiter with respect to recruitment, employment contracts, wages and working hours should indicate measures adopted to minimize the risk of forced labor and trafficking in persons.
  • Written procedures should establish ethical practice in providing job-seekers with accurate details of working conditions at the time of recruitment, and that these details are communicated in language job-seekers understand. They should also prohibit recruiters or sub-contractors working on their behalf from making false promises concerning employment conditions, in particular regarding wage expectations.
  • Operating guidelines should further indicate that the labor recruiter has established an effective mechanism for confidential reporting of non-compliance, a grievance procedure, a process of investigating and reporting complaints, protection for whistleblowers, and an effective remediation procedure in the case of verified non-compliance.

8. Wage slips and salary statements (see also the box provided below).

  • Review the wage slips or salary statements of migrant workers employed or managed by labor recruiters to ensure that:
      • Salaries correspond to the legal or industry minimum, and are commensurate to those of country nationals working in the same job or section; and
      • Wage calculations are made clearly, with transparency, and there is no evidence of unlawful or unauthorized deductions.
  • Review records relating to wage advances or loans provided to migrant workers, if applicable. Make sure that:
      • They comply with the law;
      • Interest rates for their repayment are fair;
      • Repayment terms are fair;
      • The repayment period does not exceed the term of the employment contract; and that
      • Such records indicate advanced written agreement to the terms and conditions of the loan and its repayment signed by both parties.
  • Where labor recruiters are required or requested by workers to remit their earnings, or a part thereof, to a third party, review relevant records to ensure that:
      • This is done with workers’ prior knowledge and full and voluntary consent; and
      • Workers receive a receipt for the full amount remitted.

9. Labor recruiter training and orientation records.

  • These records should indicate that – prior to departure and upon arrival – workers received basic orientation and training on:
      • Their rights and responsibilities on the job as well as those of their employer, whether this is the labor recruiter or the facility;
      • Contractual obligations;
      • Terms and conditions of employment;
      • Living conditions; and
      • Grievance procedures that are in place for workers should they encounter a problem.

In Focus: Auditing Wages
Analyzing pay documents can be the most complex, time-consuming aspect of an audit. However, this review, combined with worker interviews, is the only way to determine whether workers’ pay meets legal and contractual obligations. A thorough analysis of pay systems should include:

      • A representative number of pay slips;
      • Payroll documents;
      • Time cards; and
      • Any other relevant material for wage calculation for each worker.

Once you have assembled these documents, attempt to determine if paid wages are legally and in agreement with the employment contracts signed by workers.

Some tips can help you in this task:

      • Be sure to differentiate base wage from gross or net when calculating;
      • Ensure that you apply the correct minimum wage rate according to region, type of factory and skill level of the worker;
      • Randomly select a representative sample size of migrant workers from the list provided by the brand or supplier facility and/or labor recruiter, and analyze their payroll records. The sample should represent all categories of migrant workers from all sections in the facility.

What to look for:

      • Verify from corresponding time cards and attendance records that all hours and days worked are recorded on the payroll.
      • Check the rate of overtime compensation and determine if it is legal.
      • Verify that workers were paid the legal overtime rate for overtime hours worked.
      • Check that only legally mandated deductions are made.
      • Check whether all workers have signed to indicate they have received their wages. If any worker has not signed, inquire why.
      • Check sample pay slips to check that all relevant information is provided.
      • Review the files of terminated or resigned workers and determine whether they were properly compensated.

 


 

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