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Better conditions - on the factory floor and beyond

Two men in a factory producing IKEA furniture.

More than 500,000 people work for companies that are direct suppliers to IKEA around the world. We want to make sure that we have a positive impact both on our suppliers, and the societies in which they operate. That’s why our efforts don’t stop at our supplier code of conduct, but go beyond the factory floor.

A woman sitting on a worktable with a paintbrush in her hand.

We actively support our suppliers in improving their employees’ working conditions and everyday lives, for example by ensuring that working hours are not too long and that workers can maintain their family life. Sometimes, a change on the factory floor, such as modernizing equipment, can impact entire industries and societies.


Our supplier code of conduct (iway)

Mutual understanding and sharing fundamental values is the basis for all good relationships. This goes for our supplier relationships as well. Our supplier code of conduct specifies our minimum requirements relating to the environment, social impact and working conditions. Each year, auditors make around 2000 checks at suppliers and sub-suppliers, to make sure our code of conduct is followed.

A woman in a blue shirt, lifting folded cardboard boxes.
JOINT EFFORTS TO ENSURE:
No child labour
No forced or bonded labour
No discrimination
Freedom of association
Minimum wages and overtime compensation
Health, safety & environment
 

Two men wearing yellow t-shirts, headphones and blue dungarees, standing in a factory producing IKEA furniture.

Building a better business

 
We want to make sure that everyone involved in making our products enjoys going to work, and we believe that satisfied co-workers are good for business. Through our long-term partnerships, we have taken many important steps towards supporting better working conditions in our supply chain.
 
 
A film about how a factory in China helps their migrant families reunite when the parents have to move away from home to find work opportunities.
Reuniting migrant workers with their families. The MYS Dongguan factory have found a way to reunite their migrant workers with their children. After all, their co-workers are their most valuable asset. IKEA supports this important mission and encourages all our Chinese suppliers to follow. It’s not only the right thing to do, it’s better for business.
Two men in blue shirts, inspecting high piles of cardboard boxes.

A pioneer for decent working hours. One of the big issues we have faced is making sure that people at our suppliers are not working too many hours a week. In China, where long hours are common in some industries, we have worked hard together with our suppliers to reduce the working hours. In 2015, we reached working hour limits of 40 hours per week and 36 overtime hours per month, while maintaining wage levels. 


Enabling social change

We want to play our part in creating a better life for the people and communities touched by our business. By partnering with social entrepreneurs and other progressive partners, we can help create life-changing opportunities for reducing poverty, for social development and for female empowerment.

A film about an Indian woman who tells her story about how working and earning her own money has improved her life.

#SHEMADEIT. Get to know Saroj, Craft Manager, at the social enterprise Rangsutra in India, and learn more about how working and earning her own income has improved her life.

Learn more about IKEA partnerships with social entrepreneurs

A film about hand-made rugs in India, and how IKEA together with the suppliers in India and Bangladesh, established regulated weaving centers to secure decent working conditions and fair pay.
Weaving a better future. Handmade rugs are popular for their craftsmanship and rich history, with each rug carrying unique signs of the weavers’ skills. Unfortunately, carpet weaving is hard work and the industry is associated with poor conditions, low wages and exploitation by middlemen – something we’ve decided to change. Together with our suppliers in India and Bangladesh, IKEA has established regulated weaving centers to secure decent working conditions, a regular income and fair pay. 
 
IKEA has gone even further by modernizing one of the looms used in the production of handmade rugs in India, the punja loom, so it’s more ergonomic and 40 percent more efficient. The new loom, that we haven’t patent protected so that it hopefully can improve working conditions in the entire industry, have made it possible for more women to work at the weaving mills. To date 5 500 weavers and 4 500 other workers are involved in the IKEA initiative.

 

Great craftmanship. Today IKEA have a number of handmade rugs in our range. They come in a variety of sizes, shapes and materials, which means that you’re likely to find your match regardless of preferences. But however different the rugs may seem at first glance they all share the inherent uniqueness and high quality that derive from great craftmanship. The most recent additions to our handmade rugs range are BRÖNDEN, KOLLUND and KÖPENHAMN.

BRÖNDEN rug is low pile, multcolour wool rug that is handwoven in India and Bangladesh.

BRÖNDEN rug, handwoven by skilled craftsmen in India and Bangladesh, is a new addition to the IKEA handmade rugs range. The low pile, multicolour wool rug adds softness and warmth to all spaces. 

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KOLLUND rug, is made from durable wool, and woven in different pile heights which makes the hexagonal pattern stand out. This is more than a comfort booster, it’s an actual piece of art. 

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KÖPENHAMN rug, flatwoven in dark grey, goes well with almost every look. Just like all the handmade rugs in our range, every item is unique, bearing the mark of its origin.

A film about the NORDRANA series at IKEA. A series consisting of hand-chrocheted bathroom baskets made by Vietnamese women and men. For many of the women it is their first formal job outside the home.

Redefining craftsmanship. Our NORDRANA series has benefited local women in the Vietnamese countryside. At local handicraft centres, many women now enjoy a formal job for the first time, earning a salary outside of the home.

A film about SOARÉ place mat at IKEA. A handmade place mat made from water hyacinth that grows in Vietnam. And the importance it has to the people living along the river's bank.

Empowering people and communities. SOARÉ placemat is popular with our customers and loved by the people who make it too, because of the impact it has on their lives. It’s woven from water hyacinth that grows in the Mekong River in Vietnam. The process of harvesting, drying and weaving the plant is important to the people living along the river banks. It keeps the waterway passable, it preserves handicraft tradition and it earns the weavers extra money that can pay for new opportunities, like schooling.