From day one, Working Capital has been focused on accelerating supply chain innovations to enable corporations and employers to operate more transparently and responsibly around the world, based on the recognition that the private sector is increasingly accountable for labor abuses that exist in its supply chains. Until now there had been no accounting for the size of the market that supply chain responsibility tools represent.

“Responsible Supply Chain Tools: Understanding the Market Opportunity” is a new report conducted by The Monitor Institute by Deloitte, with support from Working Capital. Working Capital commissioned the report with funds from UK aid from the UK government. The report dives deeper into that current market and projects promising growth in the near future. According to the report, the market for these tools could grow to between $889 million and $2.7 billion over the next five years. We believe there is reason for this optimism, and that as these tools continue to provide impact – as our portfolio companies have demonstrated – and social and regulatory pressures for accountability take further hold, the market will continue to expand.

It’s exciting to see the potential for growth in this market, but it’s even more exciting to think about the positive impact that this growth could have on the lives of vulnerable workers. Labor conditions deep in supply chains have historically been difficult for companies to assess, let alone improve.

The report finds a recognition by companies that the continued reliance on social compliance audits will not and cannot make meaningful change for workers on their own. Companies are increasingly investing in tools that help them assess risk, identify sources, diagnose problems, engage workers, and monitor labor practices – as they build towards more transparent supply chains, better protections for workers, preferences for high-performing suppliers, and more opportunities to collaborate.

The Working Capital Fund will continue to ignite innovation in this field so that companies and employers can ensure that the workers who make the products we use and consume every day are treated with dignity.

Read the full report here.