How Thayer Certified Works

On-site audit and anonymous interviews

We rely heavily on in-person site surveys and anonymous employee interviews to verify a workplace is SAFE & FAIR for workers. These form the backbone of the Thayer Certified seal. However, the certification process begins with an application and desktop vetting to create the context for a meaningful evaluation and concludes with areas for improvement and highlights for promotion in addition to the summary evaluation and certification result.

Certification process

APPLICATION  Applications

We begin by reviewing the nature of the business, product or service to be certified to see if it is a good fit for Thayer Certified. We also estimate the cost of certification at this stage.

Vetting  Vetting

We conduct desktop research and management interviews. We research local laws, living wages and best practices for your industry and location. We also gather information on the business’s policies and procedures.


We visit every site involved in the provision of the product or service up for certification. Most sites require no more than a day to audit. While we’re on-site, we examine the work environment to verify that it is safe and fair according to our criteria and methodology and look for opportunities to highlight or improve existing safety and fairness initiatives. See more on our certification criteria on the WHAT page.

ANONYMOUS INTERVIEWS  Anonymous Interviews

While we’re on site, we conduct interviews with management to learn more about the company policies and the type of work environment they believe they provide to employees. Management interviews are followed by anonymous employee interviews, where we get honest, unbiased feedback from the workers’ perspective on their pay, benefits and treatment. This allows us to objectively verify that company policies and local laws are being followed in practice.

EVALUATION   Evaluation

We compare our site and interview data with local laws, company policies, industry best practices and common sense. Our report is an evaluation of the highlights and shortcomings of the operation across our SAFE & FAIR evaluation criteria [link to what page]. We issue our evaluation less than a week after our visit.

CERTIFICATION  Certification

If we do not identify any serious risks, we award unlimited use of the Thayer Certification mark to your business for one year.

If we identify any serious risks or gaps between policy and practice, then we suggest steps you can take to address them and conduct an appropriate follow-up verification.

What does the final SAFE & FAIR evaluation look like?

What businesses are Thayer Certified?