Through our business, we contribute to 1.6 million jobs for people employed by our suppliers. It is important for us that the people making our clothes are treated with respect, and that our suppliers offer their employees fair wages and good working conditions. It has always been our vision that all textile workers should be able to live on their wage.
"The price tag doesn’t correlate with the pay slip."
A common misunderstanding is that the price of a garment reflects the way it is produced, or the wage of the seamstress. Since the H&M group does not own any factories, we work with independent suppliers. This means that our suppliers are contracted by many other brands at the same time.
So, regardless of the garment’s price tag - the worker earns the same amount of money. The workers are employed by the supplier – and not by us. We neither set nor pay the factory workers’ wages and consequently, we cannot directly decide what they are paid.
However, we do have a big responsibility which we are more than willing to accept. We work with wage issues within the company as well as in collaboration with other stakeholders, such as, the UN body International Labour Organization, global unions and non-governmental organisations. We are the only company in our sector to have implemented a strategy for fair living wages – the Fair Wage Living Strategy. Thereto, we are using the Fair Wage method to achieve fairer wage setting for the worker employees.
We are working in partnership with both local players and global organisations on this important issue. By working in an organised way and not choosing the simple solutions, we can create long-term and lasting changes. It takes time, but we do see continuous improvements.
How do we keep our affordable prices?
It’s quite simple. Being cost conscious, having no middlemen, very efficient logistics and running our own stores. And of course, we are the second biggest fashion retailer in the world.