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IRF TRUSTED MARK

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The International Retail Forum Setting ‘Customer Centric’ Standards in Retail

The ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme for Retailers & Retail businesses spanning across all retail operations including hypermarkets, super markets, department stores, speciality stores, e-retailers & service providers, restaurants, jewellers, pharmacies, salons, spas, wellness centres, FECs and cineplexes.

 

Introduction

 

The ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme aims to serve two purposes. The first is to inform the industry about the ‘Trusted’ Scheme and encourage them to improve on their practices and systems. The second is to assure consumers that retailers will adhere to the requirements of the Scheme, which is consumer centric.

 

IRF TRUSTED MARK Secretariat aims to undertake a nationwide campaign to establish the ‘Trusted ‘ mark as the seal for consumer trust – generating consumer awareness and assurance needed to encourage consumers to confidently shop, eat and enjoy products and services of outlets with ‘Trusted ‘ Mark.

 

Certification Bodies accredited by the National Accreditation Board for Certification Bodies (Member International Accreditation Forum), to conduct the audit process. IRF TRUSTED MARK Secretariat has instutionlaized mechanism for capacity building and dissemination of the Scheme with identified partners.

 

The ‘Trusted Mark’ Scheme will address various segments and sub-segments. The categorisation of the scope of the Scheme with its ‘Trusted Marks’ is as follows:-

 

1) ‘Trusted Shop’ – for retailers in formats like hypermarkets, super markets, department stores, speciality and convenience stores

2) ‘Trusted Spa’ – for health resorts offering therapeutic services such as massages, saunas, baths and manicures.

3) Trusted Salon’ – for parlours offering beauty, facial, hair, skin and nail care services.

4) ‘Trusted Care’ – for Gyms, Fitness and Wellness centres.

5) ‘Trusted Restaurant’ – for Restaurants & Eateries.

6) ‘Trusted Cineplex’ – for Multi and Miniplexes.

7) ‘Trusted Fun Zone’ – for Family Entertainment Centres, Gaming & Play Zones, Water/ Ice Parks etc.

8) ‘Trusted Pharmacy’ – for Retailer of medicines on prescription/ OTC.

9) ‘Trusted Jeweller’ – for jewellery retailers.

10) ‘Trusted e-shop’ – for e-retailers & service providers

 

The ‘Trusted’ Certification Mark – The Seal of Consumer Trust

 

The ‘Trusted Mark’ is the seal of excellence in customer service and assurance of retailers adhering to the stringent requirements of the scheme.

 

Under this Certification Scheme, retailers are audited as per the relevant technical standards. Retailers that adhere to Scheme requirements obtain the Trusted Mark’. The ‘Trusted Mark’ will be allowed to be displayed on their outlet fronts/ e-page and all marketing and communication materials as an outward sign of their commitment to the Certification Mark.

 

Retailers seeking ‘Trusted Mark’ certification will have to comply with the requirements of Scheme. The key to certification is not only adhering to statutory requirements but also the requirements as mentioned in each of the technical standard. This will help in bringing in transparency so that the consumers know what to expect from their purchase/ service from the point of browsing and buying to after-sales. This will ensure that the brick and mortar retailers in general and specifically e/m-commerce retailers, selling through e/m-commerce as well and omni channel adhere to mandatory compliance with respect to information, security and integrity in their transactions, as stipulated in the relevant standard of the scheme.

 

The ‘TRUSTED MARK’ comes with rankings in 5 levels (1 to 5 stars – *, **, ***, ****, *****) based on applicant’s score achieved during the Scheme audit.

 

The ‘TRUSTED MARK’ Scheme has been formulated in a manner compliant to ISO;IEC 17065 which has sections namely, technical standards, certification process , requirements for Certification Bodies (CB). All the CBs accredited under the Scheme will need to adhere to the requirements of ISO;IEC 17065 as a part of the accreditation process.

 

The Scheme Owner

 

The ‘TRUSTED MARK’ Scheme is owned by the IRF Trusted Mark LLP, the international retail forum setting ‘customer centric’ standards in retail. Images Group, Promoter of the IRF Trusted Mark is the premier knowledge, networking and business platform for India’s burgeoning retail, consumer brands and Shopping Centre industries.

 

The Trusted Board

 

The Trusted Board, with members representing the retail sector, trade & consumer bodies, NGOs, academia & research, legal, policy and regulatory bodies, supported by various committees comprising of members with diverse background (interested party representation and subject expertise) is the vanguard of the vision to establish the ‘Trusted Mark’ as the seal for consumer trust – generating consumer awareness and assurance needed to encourage consumers to confidently shop, eat and enjoy products and services of outlets crying the ‘Trusted Mark’. The Board’s mission is to improve practices and systems in retail businesses and assure consumers that retailers will adhere to the stringent requirements of the Scheme, which is consumer centric.

 

Co-chaired by IRF Chairman, Mr. Krish Iyer, (President and CEO, Walmart India) and QCI Chairman, Adil Zainulbhai(Chairman Network18 and TV18 and Senior advisor McKinsey), the esteemed Trusted Board for the ‘Trusted Mark’ certification extends support with critical strategic advice on final approval on standards, modifications, CB audit process, programs to establish the mark as the seal of customer trust and optimum execution of the scheme.

 

About The Promoter

 

Images Group is recognised by the international retail community through its B2B Magazines, Conferences, Exhibitions, Research Volumes, Web Portals & Online Services, and is trusted as the catalyst for profitable growth of modern retail through knowledge platform leadership.

 

A strong portfolio of business publications have served since 1992 to inform, advise and inspire leaders and decision makers of the retail industry. Focused media serves the Retail industry across various verticals like Textiles & Fashion, Shoes & Accessories, Sportswear, Food & Grocery, Beauty & Wellness, Food Service, Consumer & Personal Electronics, Books, Music, Toys & Gifts, Home & Office Improvement , Leisure & Entertainment etc. through its various print and online publications and websites.

 

Images Group covers various aspects of retail business like space, location, market & consumer trends, store design & VM, product sourcing, merchandising, marketing & promotions, branding, supply chain & logistics, retail business models (Franchising, distribution, Licensing, Joint Ventures etc.), IT, CRM, HR etc.

 

The sole objective of the Images Group is to modernize Indian retail; bring retailers across the country in to the fold of structured businesses with modern systems & processes following Govt rules and regulations.

 

The Certification scheme is a step forward to encourage retailers to be more customer centric and adhere to the standards of the ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme in all retail operations.

Trusted Mark Announcement at IRF 2015

 

Indian Consumers soon to look for ‘TRUSTED’ Mark before they shop online or offline

 

The scheme to cover retail businesses spanning across all retail operations including hypermarkets, super markets, department stores, speciality stores, e-retailers & service providers, restaurants, jewellers, pharmacies, salons, spas, wellness centres, FECs and cineplexes.

 

The launch of the much awaited ‘Trusted’ Mark in India at the IRF’s 2015 annual congregation was a historic event. As part of the ‘Make in India’ initiative IRF with inputs from global and Indian experts in retail and consumer trust building program, launches – The first of its kind in the world – the IRF certification scheme, which aims to bring over 1,00,000 retail stores across the country in to the fold of modern retail following IRF standards in next five years’ time.

 

Launching-The-TRUSTED-Mark--LtoR--Anurag-Mathur-PWC,-Krish-Iyer-Walmart,-Adil-Zainubhai-QCI,-Rakesh-Biyani,-Future-Group-Bijou-Kurien-LCapital,-Ranabir-Mitra-Adidas-Group,-Amitabh-Taneja-IRF

 

The certification scheme is developed adhering to ISO/IEC 17067 Guidelines.

On Day 1 of India Retail Forum, all stakeholders in the scheme including some of the compliance and legal heads of the best of global, national, regional and local retailers joined Industry and certification bodies, policy makers, PWC and QCI officials to understand the scheme and its standards.

 

LtoR-Ranabir-Mitra

 

Introducing the scheme, IRF Convenor, R S Roy said that the sole objective of IRF was to modernize Indian retail; bring retailers across the country into the fold of structured businesses with modern systems & processes following Govt rules and regulations. IRF Certification scheme is a step forward to encourage retailers to be more customer centric and adhere to the ’Trusted’ standards in all retail operations.

 

Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman, Quality Council of India talked about the various initiatives of the QCI in improving standards and sighted examples from the Indian health care sector. “Today India can boast of world class health care facilities and with ‘Trusted’ mark we hope to see similar transformation in the retail sector as well”.

 

Amitabh Kant, Secretary, DIPP, Ministry of Commerce said in his message, “The launch of ‘Trusted’ mark is indeed a very exciting news for the Indian consumers and I compliment IRF for developing the certification scheme for retailers operating in India across channels like brick and mortar, ecommerce or omni-channel. I am happy that this India originated scheme has the scope for global acceptance. IRF has built a very strong community of retailers that truly believes in modern systems and processes and I am sure that these retailers once committed to the IRF standards will together build a retail environment where consumer are aware, assured and encouraged to shop, eat and enjoy products and services of outlets with ‘Trusted ’ Mark in full confidence”.

 

IRF Chairman Krish Iyer who heads the Walmart business in India gave the biggest push to the scheme by expressing his intent to push 100 of Walmart’s top retailers in India to go for the ‘Trusted’ mark. “This will indeed set the ball rolling and will be the 1st milestone in bringing thousands of retailers across India in to the fold of modern retail,” added Kant. I agree with QCI Chairman Mr. Adil Zainulbhai that the scheme needs to encourage SME retailers to go for the ‘Trusted’ Mark and I am glad that IRF Chairman Mr. Krish Iyer has agreed to take the lead, he further added.

 

PwC experts Mr. Manpreet Singh Ahuja and Shreyans Dudheriya in their presentation explained how retailers seeking IRF certification would have to comply with the requirements of the Scheme. The key to certification is not only adhering to statutory requirements but also the requirements as mentioned in each of the technical standard. This will help in bringing transparency so that the consumers know what to expect from their purchase/ service from the point of browsing and buying to after-sales. This will ensure that the brick and mortar retailers in general and specifically e/m-commerce retailers, selling through e/m-commerce as well and omni-channel adhere to mandatory compliance with respect to information, security and integrity in their transactions, as stipulated in the relevant IRF Standard. The IRF Certified Retailers will be graded in 5 levels (1 to 5 stars) based on applicant’s score achieved during IRF Scheme audit.

 

Certification bodies desirous to be a part of the scheme may apply for provisional approval to:

 

Retailers seeking ‘Trusted’ Certification can contact:

 

IRF Certification Scheme Department
IRF Secretariat
S-21, Okhla Industrial Area, Phase II, New Delhi 110020
Hemant Wadhawan: M: +91 9810424668
E: hemantwadhawan@indiaretailforum.org

Trusted Mark Launch at IRF 2016

 

‘TRUSTED’ Mark in RETAIL to ensure 360% customer care

 

Indian consumers will soon look for the ‘TRUSTED’ mark before they shop online or offline.

 

Indian retail industry celebrates the launch of ‘Trusted’ mark at India Retail Forum. The first of its kind customer centric certification mark in retail will be the seal of excellence in customer service and assurance of retailers adhering to the stringent standards as laid down in the IRF Certification Scheme for retailers.

 

Launching the much-awaited scheme for retailers, IRF Chairman Krish Iyer, who heads the Walmart business in India, said that while the government in past few years had been working towards consumer protection law legislating new enactments to meet the needs of the changing times and equip the consumers to protect their rights against unfair trade practices, IRF had been busy in developing a voluntary certification scheme for retailers that will see retailers winning consumer trust not just by adhering to statutory requirements but integrating CUSTOMER FOCUS across their retail operations.

 

irf_16_trusted-3

 

“Today is that big day when IRF is ready to roll out the scheme after a year long ratification process involving over 100 retailers from India and the world over, leading trade bodies, top corporate counsels, economists, consumer organizations, consulting, research and academia and surely many of you sitting in the audience”, he added.

 

Top dignitaries in retail with multi stakeholders including Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Founder, Paytm; Al Rajwani, MD and CEO, P&G India; Govind Shrikhande, CCA & MD, Shoppers Stop;  Rakesh Biyani, Joint MD, Future Retail; Vanitha Narayanan, MD, IBM; B S Nagesh, Founder, TRRAIN, Ms. Shashi Rekha, Director, NABCB and Mr. R S Roy, Convenor, IRF unveiled the 10 Trusted marks that will cover retail businesses spanning across all retail formats & channels including hypermarkets, super markets, department stores, speciality stores, e-retailers & service providers, restaurants, jewellers, pharmacies, salons, spas, wellness centres, FECs and cineplexes.

 

avm_0532

 

Introducing the scheme, IRF Convenor, R S Roy said that the sole objective of IRF was to modernize Indian retail; bring retailers across the country into the fold of structured businesses with modern systems & processes following Govt rules and regulations. IRF Certification scheme is a step forward to encourage retailers to be more customer centric and adhere to the ’Trusted’ standards in all retail operations.

 

“Retail is all about serving customers. It takes a lot to win customer trust. The technical standards that retailers would have to comply with will surely help in bringing transparency in customer dealing. Consumers would know what to expect from their purchase/ service from the point of browsing and buying to after-sales. This will ensure that the brick and mortar retailers in general and specifically e/m-commerce retailers, as well and omni-channel adhere to mandatory compliance with respect to information, security and integrity in their transactions, as stipulated in the relevant IRF Standard. The IRF Certified Retailers will be graded in 5 levels (1 to 5 stars) based on applicant’s score achieved during IRF Scheme audit”, he added.

 

Amitabh Kant, Former Secretary, DIPP, Ministry of Commerce and now CEO, Neeti Ayog had said in his message, “The launch of ‘Trusted’ mark is indeed a very exciting news for the Indian consumers and I compliment IRF for developing the certification scheme for retailers operating in India across channels like brick and mortar, ecommerce or omni-channel. I am happy that this India originated scheme has the scope for global acceptance. IRF has built a very strong community of retailers that truly believes in modern systems and processes and I am sure that these retailers once committed to the IRF standards will together build a retail environment where consumer are aware, assured and encouraged to shop, eat and enjoy products and services of outlets with ‘Trusted ’ Mark in full confidence”.

 

Krish Iyer  gave the biggest push to the scheme by expressing his intent to push 100 of Walmart’s top retailers in India to go for the ‘Trusted’ mark. “This will indeed set the ball rolling and will be the 1st milestone in bringing thousands of retailers across India in to the fold of modern retail,” added Kant. I agree with QCI Chairman Mr. Adil Zainulbhai that the scheme needs to encourage SME retailers to go for the ‘Trusted’ Mark and I am glad that IRF Chairman Mr. Krish Iyer has agreed to take the lead, he further added.

 

Committing to the standards, Rakesh Biyani, Joint MD, Future Retail said that the retailers across verticals, formats and channels were already gearing to go for the mark. “We are committed to maintain and improve on the standards and we hope by 2020 at least 7 per cent of modern retail sales would be under the ‘Trusted’ mark”, he added.

 

Retailers that adhere to the Scheme requirements obtain the Trusted’ Certification Mark. The ‘Trusted’ Mark will be allowed to be displayed on their outlet fronts/ e-page and all marketing and communication materials as an outward sign of their commitment to the ‘Trusted’ Certification Mark.

 

avm_0565

 

The IRF Scheme has been formulated in a manner compliant to ISO/IEC: 17065, which has sections namely, technical standards, certification process, requirements for Certification Bodies (CB). CBs in operations for at least 5 years can conduct ‘IRF Certification’ audit with provisional approval from IRF subject to they getting accredited by National Accreditation Board for Certifying Bodies (member International Accreditation Forum) within 1 year of accreditation launched by the accreditation body.

 Bureau Veritas Certification (India) Pvt. Ltd.
Address (Head Office): Marwah Centre, 6th Floor, Opposite Ansa Industrial Estate, Kishanlal Marwah Marg, Off Sakivihar Road, Andheri East, Mumbai, Maharashtra
Phone: 022- 66956316
Contact Person :-
Name: Mr. Ramesh Koregave
Designation: General Manager Certification (South Asia Region)
Mobile: 9769955395
 Intertek India Pvt. Ltd
Address (Head Office): E-20, Block B1, Mohan Cooperative Industrial Estate, New Delhi, Delhi 110044
Phone: 011- 41595408
Contact Person :-
Name: Ms. Madhumita Guha
Designation: Director Marketing & ATIC Sales
Mobile: 9560944433
 IRCLASS Systems and Solutions Private Limited
Address (Head Office): 2nd Floor, New Building, 52 A, Adi Shankaracharya Marg, Opposite Powai Lake, Powai, Mumbai, Maharashtra
Phone: 022- 30519800 / 30519802 / 30519836
Contact Person :-
Name: Mr. K. Doraiswamy
Designation: Deputy General Manager
Mobile: 9920085032
 ISOQAR (India) Pvt. Ltd.
Address (Head Office): 303, Matrix, Corporate Road, Prahladnagar, off. S. G. Highway, Ahmedabad, Gujarat
Phone: 079- 65452100-01-02
Contact Person :-
Name: Mr. Suhas Risbood
Designation:
Mobile: 9867575027
 Tuv India Pvt Ltd.
Address (Head Office): 801, Raheja Plaza I, LBS Road, Ghatkopar (West), Mumbai, Maharashtra
Phone: 022- 6647 7000 / 7010
Contact Person :-
Name: Mr. Shrikant Kulkarni
Designation: Associate VP – Certification & Training
Mobile: 8879902416
TUV SUD House
Address (Head Office): Off Saki Vihar Road, Saki Naka, Andheri (East),Mumbai – 400072 Maharashtra
Phone: +91 22 67545666
Fax: +91 22 67545575
Contact Person :-
Name: Ms. Vibhavari Bhagwat
Designation: Sr. General Manager – Certification
Mobile: 9867318475

faq-img

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)
IRF would like to ensure that IRF ‘TRUSTED MARK’ Certification is easy to understand and in line with that thought, here are the most frequently asked questions that retailer applicants seek answers to. If your question does not appear here, please contact us and we will endeavour to answer it.

 

What is the IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme?
IRF ‘TRUSTED MARK’ Certification Scheme – setting global standards in retail with world’s first consumer centric ‘TRUSTED MARK’ – was launched for roll-out in India at the 2016 annual mega congregation of IRF. As per experts this will be the most widely accepted and visible consumer mark in times to come.

 

IRF ‘TRUSTED MARK’ Certification Scheme has been developed by the India Retail Forum (IRF) for the purpose of certifying retailers operating in India on set standards. IRF Certification is a seal of approval from an impartial third party that a certified retail brand has adequate systems and infrastructure in place to provide confidence to its customers in the quality of service provided by the retail brand. The IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ certification shall endeavour to facilitate trade, fair competition and consumer acceptance on a national, regional and international level.

 

Who all can apply for this Scheme? 

Retailer / retail organization of any size operating single or multiple retail outlets can apply to get their retail brand/s certified. The applying retailer / organisation may or may not be a privilege member of IRF. However, establishing legal status of the applicant is mandatory.

 

While the scheme will ultimately cover all channels like brick and mortar, online and omni-channel, in the first phase the scheme is open to retail brands in brick and mortar space – spanning across all retail formats including hypermarkets, super markets, department stores, speciality stores (fashion/ shoes & accessories/ sportswear/ home & interiors, consumer electronics (CDIT)/ furniture & furnishings, luggage, books, music & gifts…), restaurants, jewelers, pharmacies, salons, spas, fitness centers, FECs and cineplexes.

 

What the IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme aims to serve?

The Trusted Scheme primarily aims to serve two purposes

– To award certification to retailers who demonstrate superior quality and other characteristics which meet the rigorous requirements of the Trusted Scheme. This aim will further include spreading awareness amongst stakeholders in the industry about the Trusted Scheme and encouraging them to improve the quality of their practices, systems & infrastructure.

– To inform and assure consumers through the certification that retailers, as certified under the Trusted Scheme, are in compliance with the comprehensive quality requirements of the Trusted Scheme, which in turn are inherently consumer oriented and focused.

 

How credible is the IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme?

The IRF ‘TRUSTED MARK’ Scheme has been developed in compliance with ISO/IEC 17065:2012 in consultation with technically competent multi stakeholders and an effective mechanism exists for its periodic review/revision.

 

IRF Trusted board with its sub committees is co-chaired by IRF Chairman, Mr. Krish Iyer, (President and CEO, Walmart India) and QCI Chairman, Adil Zainulbhai (Chairman Network18 and TV18 and Senior advisor McKinsey). The board and its committees represent India’s top trade bodies, corporate counsels, economists, consumer, academic, consulting & research organizations, NGOs, over 100 top global and Indian retail organisations, certification bodies, Quality Council of India and its National Accreditation Board of Certification Bodies.

 

The development process of this mega scheme has been adequately explained on IRF website. The yearlong ratification process included multi stakeholder consultation, continuous improvisation of the scheme documents, inviting public comments and a series of marathon meets of its various committees.

 

Important links

ABOUT US OTHER DOCUMENTS

Read All Comments & IRF Replies

Message of

Mr. Amitabh Kant

Trusted Board

Focused Retail Committees

Technical Committee

Certification Committee

Mediation Committee  

IRF Approved Certification Bodies

 >> Trust 100 – IRF Trusted Scheme Manual

 >> Trust 150 – Standards document

>> Trust 200 – Trusted Scheme Certification Process

>> Trust 201 – Application Process

>> Trust 202 – Trusted Scheme Audit Manday Estimation Guideline

>> Trust 203 – CB Personnel Competence Guidelines

>> Trust 204 – Self Evaluation by Client/ Star Grading Criteria/ 

>> Trust 205 – IRF Mystery Audit

>> Trust 210 – Scheme Procedure for Appeals and Complaints

>> Trust 211 – Incident Report

>> Trust 250 – Rules for use of IRF Certification Mark

Photo Gallery of Trusted Meets

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/trusted-conference-session-15th-september-2015

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/ceos-roundtable-mr-amitabh-kant-16th-septenber-2015

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/trusted-mark-announcement

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/trusted-certification-committee-meet

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/trusted-technical-committee-meet

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/irf-trusted-mark-orientation-meet-20th-september-2016

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/cb-ab-meet-irf

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/launch-irf-certification-scheme

http://www.indiaretailforum.org/trusted-meet-nift-consumer-groups

 

 

What would be the advantage of IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ to a retailer?

Once IRF Trusted Mark standard is implemented, the credibility of retailers increases. Customers would then be very vigilant and inquisitive and would want to shop from IRF Certified retailers with ‘Trusted Mark’.

Strengthens internal systems & processes wrt to customer care
Nothing left to chance wrt Customer promise vs delivery
Everything in black & white – well drafted, communicated and understood policies/ manuals/ SOPs
Clear-cut Responsibilities and Accountabilities
Establish full trustworthiness before earning the Trusted Mark

 

Customer Pull: For consumers, this is assurance that the retailer meets the stringent requirements of the IRF Scheme. IRF aims to undertake a nationwide campaign to establish the ‘Trusted ‘ mark as the seal for consumer trust – generating consumer awareness and assurance needed to encourage consumers to confidently shop, eat and enjoy products and services of outlets with ‘Trusted ‘ Mark.

The key to certification is not only adhering to statutory requirements but also the requirements as mentioned in each of the technical standard. This will help in bringing in transparency so that the consumers know what to expect from their purchase/ service from the point of browsing and buying to after-sales.

 

What is the difference between Trusted Mark and other marks like Hallmark in jwellery, Agmark in food and ISI mark in industrial produces?

Unlike marks mentioned in the question that certifies products, IRF Trust Mark Certification is a Retail Brand Certification. Trusted Mark logo and its star rating cannot be used on the product. They will always be used with the retail brand name and not the products that the retailer sells. The Mark shall be displayed on outlet fronts/ e-page and all marketing and communication materials as an outward sign of certified establishment’s commitment to the Mark.

 

Is IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ applicable to any other allied industry? 

No. This is specifically for retail brands catering to end-consumer.

 

Is it a single or multiple Certificate/s Scheme?

Though it is a single Certification Scheme but it covers 10 different retail segments namely Trusted shop, spa, salon, care, restaurant, cineplex, funzone, jeweller, pharmacy and e-shop. The organization can apply under either of the segments in relation to the type of retail business it operates under the applying retail brand.

 

What is the definition of retail brand in this Scheme?

Retail brand is the name on outlet / website fascia identifiable by customer and not the brand/s that the outlet sells.

 

If there are more than one retail brands with an organization, can all of them apply for Certification?

Yes, but in that case each brand will have to apply separately for Certification and under the relevant segment.

 

What is the IRF Certification Audit Process? 

An audit is the process by which a company shows evidence of working to the required system and this is a compulsory element of the IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Process. It ensures that the system a retail brand has implemented is fit for purpose and continually improving. It is the regular check that a retail brand is managing the system/s consistently.

 

How a retail brand is going to be assessed and audited?

The assessment and auditing is done for a set of standards, which have been developed and ratified by technical experts and multi stakeholders. These standards encompass key functional areas of retail business such as customer service, care, safety, security, HR practices, Communication, Goods and services and so on. Please refer Trust 150 document for more detail.

 

What kind of audit is there under IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme?

There are two kinds of audits – Onsite audit which is done at outlet / office and mystery audit. The former is done by a Certification Body (CB) and the latter is done by IRF appointed auditor. The findings of IRF mystery audit is reported to CB for final assessment.

 

What is a Certification Body (CB)?

A CB is a third party audit company. An IRF approved CB is a legal entity operating as CB for at least 5 years and conforms to ISO/IEC 17065. The CB is accredited by NABCB. The certification body is responsible for and retains authority for assessing, auditing and certifying the retailer / retail organisation. This includes the granting, maintaining, renewing, extending, reducing, suspending and withdrawing of certification.

 

How IRF ensures that the CB auditors are qualified to audit a retail brand?

The qualification and competence level of involved auditors is well defined in Trust 203 document. IRF approved CBs have gone through the IRF orientation program together with compliance, regulatory and legal experts of retail organisations.

 

What is the significance of star rating in the Scheme?

The Scheme certifies a retail brand on five stars rating depending on the score achieved during the audit. Please refer Trust 204 document for applicable star rating scores. The rating is independent of business size of the retail brand but reflects its level of compliance to applicable standards. Thus even a large retail brand can be rated One star under the Scheme and even a small retail brand can earn Five stars.

 

What are the pre-requisites for requiring at least 1 star certification?

A minimum score of 50 out of 100 is required to qualify for 1 star certification. The score can be known during self-evaluation itself, which gets further verified at the time of final audit by CB.

 

Does a retail brand needs to progress sequentially in Trusted Mark star rating from 1 star to 2 stars and then to 3 stars or can it move from 1 star to 3 stars certification directly?

It is optional. One can even migrate directly to 3 stars from 1 star provided it exceeds score of 2 star rating.

 

Can a certified retail brand move from 3 star rating back to 1 star rating in difficult times? 

In bad times actually one needs more systems and system based strategic approach and IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ actually becomes relevant during such period. However downgrading in star rating may be possible during surveillance or renewal time audit if Certified standards are not maintained by the retail brand.

 

What is the process of Certification?

The applicant retail brand registers for IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification by submitting the Application Form with required details, declarations and application fee to IRF. IRF acknowledges and conducts Mystery Audit on receipt of fee. Applicant finalizes a CB of its choice by signs a contract. IRF submits its Mystery Audit Report to CB.

 

CB finalizes the exact audit date & methodology. CB carries out offsite review of data submitted by the applicant. CB auditor(s) complete the onsite audit and issues Non-Conformity (NC), if any. Applicant takes the corrective action and submits the evidences. Auditor closes the NC offsite or by onsite verification. Auditor submits report to CB Certification Committee with a positive recommendation.

 

CB Certification Committee reviews the audit report and evidences collected and takes certification decision. CB issues the client e-certificate under intimation to IRF. Please refer Trust 200 document for more information.

 

What is the time duration for closure of NC? 

30 days duration is allowed for closure of NC. If the NC is not closed within the stipulated time frame; a re-audit will be carried out. Additional fees have to be paid for the efforts for closure of the audit finding / re-audit.

 

Is the process conclusive or has some more stages involved?

The process also includes 2 surveillance audits one each after 12 months and 24 months along with one single store surprise audit anytime during the 3 year Certification Cycle.

 

How long it will take to get Certification?

It takes 12-14 weeks for complete certification process – subject to all required documents and systems in place.

 

What is the life span of initial certification and how to extend the period?

The Certification will be for a period of 3 years after which it can be renewed.

 

If a certified retail brand discontinues with IRF Trusted Mark after 3 years, what happens? 

The retail brand will not be able to use the Trusted Mark & star rating or advertise the Trusted Mark in any of its communications. The benefits of system implementation will continue provided the retail brand continues with the system in true spirit.

 

In case of certification withdrawal from IRF what would be the suspension period to re-apply for IRF Trust Mark Certification?

There is no such time interval. Company can rectify the system and re-apply.

 

If the certified retail brand is disqualified by IRF for some reason, what happens to the certification/ displayed ‘Trusted Mark’ in stores and other communication material?

The IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ certification will be withdrawn and the retail brand would need to remove the ‘Trusted Mark’ from all its stores and communication.

 

How can a retailer brand apply for this Scheme?

The aspiring retail brand can apply for the Scheme by filling an application form and submit the same with IRF Secretariat at New Delhi. The application form is called Trust 201, which is a detailed document and has provision to record and declare all required information about the applicant.

 

If the retail brand operates 5 outlets then is it required to go for certification of all the 5 outlets under scope of IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification scheme?

Yes, all 5 outlets will be covered, irrespective of their locations and size, under IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification Scheme provided all of them are operating under that single retail brand which applied for certification.

 

If the retail brand has multiple formats within the same retail brand like express, super, hyper etc., will all formats be audited or each one will be audited separately?

It is up to the retail brand to decide if it wants the retail brand to be certified irrespective of sub formats with in or it wants a specific format of the retail brand to go for certification. According the sq root sampling will be done and stores audited.

 

In case of multiple outlets, will the CB auditor audit all outlets? 

The audit is done for a sample size, which is square root of total number of outlets. However certification achieved based on sample audit is applicable to all outlets provided they are in operation for at least six months. Detailed sampling rule are mentioned in Trust 202 document.

 

What if the retail brand has stores outside India? 

At present, the scheme is only for stores in India so stores outside India will not be covered.

 

How will audit take place for ecommerce in the absence of outlets? 

The scheme has been rolled out in the first phase for retail brands with brick and mortar stores only.

 

Who will help the applicant to implement the IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ standard / Pre-requisite?

The retail brand can approach independent consultants with knowledge of ISO certification of their own choice at their location in this regard.

 

Is it necessary to recruit additional staff for managing IRF ‘Trusted Mark ‘certification implementation?

No. If the retail brand already has competent staff to manage compliance, regulatory, legal, customer care related issues there is no need to recruit additional staff. The applicant retail brand can approach IRF for directions or can engage a consultant to guide/ train the existing employees.

 

Will the CB Auditors Guide Retail Brands for Improvement?

CB interaction during the process of audit and CB Gap Report helps identifying areas for improvement. The CB shall not offer any consultancy to any client. It may offer training on ‘Trusted’ Scheme provided the training is generic and not client specific (which may be considered as consultancy). The auditor will typically compose a report, analysing the system and the use of, against the clauses of the standard. CB will also provide clients with recommendations for improvement that will have been agreed with you to assist you to drive the system forward to enable continuous improvement, thus getting the most out of the standard/s.

 

Whom to approach for any clarification during the process of IRF certification? 

Applicant can approach the chosen CB, Consultant or IRF for clarifications.

 

What is the control with IRF if Trust Mark logo is misused? 

Logo rules drafted by IRF are available on its website and would be issued along with certification. In case of any violation disciplinary action will be based on the logo rules. Please refer Trust 250 for more information on rules for use of IRF Certification Mark.

 

How will IRF deal with any major issue raised against the retail brand? 

IRF will provide time for resolution of the problem. Proper due diligence will be done prior to any action/suspension.

 

How will IRF deal with any dispute arising among involved parties?

Trust 210 document has procedure for appeals and complaints. The reported dispute will be brought under the preview of IRF Mediation committee, which will come into existence as and when required. The committee has well defined role and responsibilities.

 

What is IRF’s mechanism for recording disputes?

Trust 211 document addresses this requirement where all such incidents are recorded appropriately for future reference and process updation.

 

What is the monetary gain from IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification scheme implementation?

It helps as a marketing tool. It is a differentiator and helps in confidence building / increasing credibility in the market especially with Customers, bankers, government etc. IRF is helping to build credibility for the industry by putting efforts, identifying quality standards, models and creating a ‘CUSTOMER CENRIC’ group which otherwise cannot be built individually.

 

Will opting for IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ help the company to obtain or raise funds from Govt./ banks? 

With required systems and processes in place, the credibility of the retail brand surely will go up. Banks and lending institutions always give due weightage to such standards.

 

Will retailer’s sales increase if IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ is adopted? If yes, HOW?

IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ promotes adoption of process approach when developing, implementing and improving the effectiveness of the business processes (including sales and operation processes) to enhance customer shopping experience and satisfaction. Moreover, IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ guides the organization TRANSFORM INPUT INTO OUTPUT.

 

What impact this certification is going to bring about to the organization? 

The certification provides a framework for growth. An organization will develop and implement systems for all aspects of business with a focus to systematically prosper and develop trust and transparency with all stakeholders.

 

Today IRF Trust Mark is not popular. How will people accept? 

It’s a journey. Certified organization will definitely reap the benefit and will be IRF’s brand ambassador. The brand building will happen over a period of time. IRF aims to undertake a nationwide campaign to establish the “Trusted” certification mark as the seal for consumer trust – generating consumer awareness as well as encouraging consumers to confidently shop, eat and enjoy services of outlets with “Trusted” certification mark.

 

What is the cost involved in getting IRF ‘Trusted Mark’ Certification?

The cost includes fee for registration, IRF management & mystery audit, Trust Mark usage and CB audit fee. Please refer Trust 201 document for detailed information on the same.

 

Will the fee reduce for multisite operation? 

Audit manday rate for all CBs is fixed but operational expenses for auditor such as travel, boarding and lodging can vary from case to case and location to location. In fact such charges can be better controlled and economically optimised if the organisation bears them itself.

 

 

 

Should you need any more clarification please do write to:

R S Roy, India Retail Forum
S 21, Okhla Industrial Area, Phase II, New Delhi – 110 020 India
Ph: +91 11 40525000 M: +91 9811070053
Email – rsroy@indiaretailforum.org
www.indiaretailforum.org

Message of Mr. Amitabh Kant, Former Secretary, DIPP

 

Amitabh-Kant_Message

Dear Retail Industry Friends
The launch of ‘Trusted’ mark is indeed a very exciting news for the Indian consumers and I compliment India Retail Forum for developing the certification scheme for retailers operating in India across channels like brick and mortar, commerce or omnichannel.

 

I am happy that this Indian originated scheme has the scope for global acceptance.

 

IRF has built a very strong community of retailers that truly believes in modern systems and processes and I am sure that these retailers once committed to the IRF standards will together build a retail environment where consumer are aware, assured and encouraged to shop, eat and enjoy products and services of outlets with ‘Trusted’ Mark in full confidence.

 

I agree with QCI Chairman Mr. Adil Zainulbhai that the scheme needs to encourage SME retailers to go for the ‘Trusted’ Mark and I am glad that IRF Chairman Mr. Krish Iyer has expressed his intent to push 100 of Walmart ’s top retailers in India to go for the ‘Trusted’ mark. This will indeed set the ball rolling and will be the 1st milestone in bringing thousands of retailers across India in to the fold of modern retail.

 

Wishing you all happy retailing and my best wishes to outstanding achievers of Indian retailing nominated for the prestigious IMAGES Retail Awards 2015.

 

Amitabh-Kant-si-300x165

Trusted Board

 

IRF Trusted Board, with members representing the retail sector, trade & consumer bodies, NGOs, academia & research, legal, policy and regulatory bodies, supported by various committees comprising of members with diverse background (interested party representation and subject expertise) is the vanguard of the vision to establish the ‘Trusted’ mark as the seal for consumer trust – generating consumer awareness and assurance needed to encourage consumers to confidently shop, eat and enjoy products and services of outlets crying the ‘Trusted’ mark. The Board’s mission is to improve practices and systems in retail businesses and assure consumers that retailers will adhere to the requirements of the Scheme, which is consumer centric.

 

Co-chaired by IRF Chairman, Mr. Krish Iyer, (President and CEO, Walmart India) and QCI Chairman, Adil Zainulbhai (Chairman Network18 and TV18 and Senior advisor McKinsey), the esteemed Trusted Board for the IRF ‘Trusted’ mark certification extends support with critical strategic advice on final approval on standards, modifications, CB audit process, programs to establish the mark as the seal of customer trust and optimum execution of the scheme.

 

CO – CHAIRMEN

 

MEMBERS

 

Focussed Retail Committees

Constitution, Roles and responsibilities

 

Focused Retail Committee is made up of a wide range of industry experts, primarily retailers of specific verticals and formats who want to be actively involved in the standard development process for their specific retail format.

  • Exchange knowledge & experience among fellow retailers in order to identify current market needs and assess the difficulties faced by retailers in implementation of the standard.
  • Review the compliance criteria from time to time.
  • Develop a communication strategy for success of the certification – Raise awareness for the program amongst retailers.
  • Operate as a consultative body, and may from time to time deal with specific technical matters that are in the interest of all retailers.

 

Focused Retail Committees are responsible for review and provide feedback to Technical Committee on any changes in the Scheme Standards. The committee shall periodically take feedback from market (through their own sources) on the perception of the Scheme among the retail industry and consumers. This feedback will help Technical and other Committees to improve the Scheme.

Focused Committees will meet at least once a year during the annual convention of IRF.

The Committee shall formulate its own processes and procedures.

 

  • All
  • Trusted Cineplex & Funzone
  • Trusted Jeweller
  • Trusted Pharmacy
  • Trusted Restaurant
  • Trusted Salon/ Spa/ Wellness Centre
  • Trusted Shop: Electronics/Durables/Utilities
  • Trusted Shop: Fashion
  • Trusted Shop: Food & Grocery
  • Trusted Shop: Large Format/Hyper Market/Dept. Store
  • Trusted Shop: Online
  • Trusted Shop: Sports & Footwear
Technical Committee

Constitution, Roles and responsibilities

 

The Technical Committee  consists of members with expertise in legal/ regulatory/ compliance/ Maintenance of the standards from organisations in each retail format and also from academics/ research/ consulting/ trade body/ Accreditation Body and Certification Body.

 

The Technical Committee enables the stakeholders to integrate their expertise for the improvement and the development of the IRF “Trusted” Certification Scheme. To study and approve any proposals put forward by the Focused Retail Committee for any changes in the Certification Program.

 

  • Participate in Other Committee meets as the need arises.
  • To ensure that all legal/ compliance/ regulatory issues are looked into and are duly adhered to as per the prevailing laws in force.

 

The Committee shall formulate its own processes and procedures and shall meet at least twice a year.

 

CHAIRMAN

Certification Committee

Constitution, Roles and responsibilities

 

The Certification Committee is an operating committee reporting to the Technical Committee. The Certification Committee is made up of wide range of industry experts from global retail organisations with knowledge of ISO standards, certification process; Accreditation Body (NABCB), Certification Bodies with thorough understanding of retail operations audit; Retail wing of National Trade Body, Consumer Protection Law, Consulting and Research. The Committee decides its own chairperson. The IRF Executive Director* may invite additional members (on need basis) in consultation with Committee chairperson. The Certification Committee shall have at least 5 members to take a decision wrt certification process, CB requirements and audit issues. The Certification Committee enables the stakeholders to integrate their expertise for the improvement and the development of the IRF “Trusted” Certification Scheme. The Committee shall formulate its own processes and procedures.

The purpose of Certification Committee includes –

  • To discuss implementation issues and provide feedback as well as represent the activities of the Certification Bodies.
  • To coordinate and supervise the activities of the Certification Bodies.
  • To discuss changes if required in the certification process, CB requirements, audit issues.
  • To review any specific trend based on issues / feedback received and recommends necessary changes in the Scheme process to the Technical Committee.
  • The Certification Committee reviews reports from various CB to establish that the audits and recommendations for Certification are arrived at through adherence to prescribed procedures and are supported by the evidence gathered during the audit.
  • These reviews may include:
    • Identifying the need for training of CB personnel where repetitive errors are made, or client appeals are found to be justified.
    • Providing feedback to Certifying bodies where deviations from the prescribed procedures are found.
    • Evaluating feedback received from Accreditation body (NABCB) on CB performance.
    • Appoint a team to carry out witness audit on CB audit teams on a sample basis

 

* At present Convenor, India Retail Forum is performing the duties of the Executive Director.

 

CHAIRMAN

Mediation Committee

Constitution, Roles and responsibilities

 

The Mediation Committee will have one representative from each of the Focused Retail Committee / Technical Committee / Certification Committee in addition to other eminent members drawn up from various sectors of the retail industry. The Committee shall formulate its own processes and procedures.

The purpose of Mediation Committee is to resolve any differences between any two parties related to Trusted Scheme Certification. The committee may receive an appeal or complaint from the aggrieved party (e.g. Retail organization, CB, IRF Secretariat and consumer). The Mediation Committee aims to –

  • To act as a Mediator as and when required, resolving any disputes / issues of disagreement / redressal that may arise between the aggrieved parties.
  • To ensure that aggrieved parties are given a fair and unbiased hearing before any final decision is taken by the Mediation Committee.
  • To ensure that a fair and just decision is taken in resolving the matter keeping in mind best and fair practices in the interests of the retailing community.
  • To review any specific trend based on complaints received and recommend necessary changes in the Scheme process to the Technical Committee.

 

The Committee comes into operation once any complaint / appeal is received by the Committee Chairperson. This may be through the IRF Secretariat or direct. The committee may decide to meet to discuss the issue or may appoint any member to investigate the complaint. The Committee shall follow the defined Trust 210 procedure. Committee may decide to change the procedure or amend the procedure for any specific case.

The Committee decision shall be final and binding on the aggrieved parties involved. The IRF secretariat shall maintain all the records for future reference.

 

 

Trusted Conference Session on 15th September, 2015

CEO’s Roundtable with Mr. Amitabh Kant on 16th Septenber, 2015

Trusted Mark Announcement on 16th September, 2015

Trusted Certification Committee Meet on 8th September, 2016

Trusted Technical Committee Meet on 15th September, 2016

IRF Trusted Mark Orientation Meet on 20th September, 2016

CB & AB meet at IRF on 21st September, 2016

Launch of IRF Certification Scheme on 21st September, 2016

Trusted Meet at NIFT with Consumer Groups on 29th September, 2016