Labour inspectors have a crucial role in promoting national labour law compliance through educating and encouraging enterprises to improve their performance in meeting national labour law requirements and enforcing legal obligations of enterprises to realize decent work and safeguard the workers’ rights.
“International Labour Standards are benchmarks for industrial standards. They are very important references to, and in some cases even legal sources for national labour laws,” explains Lin Weichun, Labour Inspector, Pingshan Human Resource Bureau of Shenzhen.
The training, conducted over two days by the ILO through the RSCA programme and the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security (MOHRSS) fell into two parts. The first aimed to raise labour inspectors’ awareness of CSR/RBC guidance for SMEs on the application of international labour standards in particular fundamental principles and rights at work (FPRW) and build good industrial relations.
The second delivered responsible labour practice training for enterprises in electronic supply chains referencing resources developed by the program, including a Labour Standards in Global Supply Chains-Trainer Guide, Participant Manual, the tripartite Declaration on multinational enterprises, international labour standards, CSR standards and national laws.
“Promoting decent work and the improvement of working conditions can be part of competitive business strategy,” explains Ji Cuijie, the manager of the project. “Incorporating responsible labour practices in supply chains can not only improve enterprises’ productivity, competitiveness and access to new markets, managing risks and strengthening resilience but also support the implementation of relevant labour laws and regulations,” she said.
However, it’s a complex field and continuing training is vital in building industry expertise.
“This training has enriched my professional knowledge and systematized my fragmented knowledge,” says Wang Peng, an HR Manager of Shenzhen Gongjin Electronics Co., Ltd. “I can share this comprehensive knowledge with colleagues in our company,” he added.
For Wang Juan, Senior HR Specialist with BYD Electronics (International), the training was instructive in showing how international labour standards provide guidance for enterprises to improve management and HR coordination. “For me, the most important lessons centred around wages and working hours, gender equality and prevention of harassment in the workplace,” she said.
The Responsible Supply Chains in Asia Project is a European Union-funded project jointly implemented by the ILO and OECD that enables businesses to dialogue on challenges and opportunities concerning corporate social responsibility in six Asian countries – China, Japan, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, and Viet Nam. It uses as a basis for its research, outreach, policy advocacy and training internationally recognised guidelines on responsible business conduct, the OECD’s Guidelines for multinational enterprises, and the ILO’s MNE declaration.
For more information about the Responsible Supply Chains in Asia project, visit www.ilo.org/rsca or contact: Ji Cuijie, Ji@ilo.org.