Supplier Relationship Management is the heart of Sustainable Procurement

The Vital Organs

What is Sustainable Procurement, really?

Some key Sustainable Procurement practices are:

  • Ensuring compliance with International and Domestic Standards, CoC, Policies, and Legislation (covering various areas: environmental, health & safety, quality, human rights, child labor, anti-corruption, business ethics, capacity/contingency, GDPR, cybersecurity, etc.)
  • Supply Chain tier-mapping, supply chain visibility, and traceability
  • Sustainability Performance & Supply Chain reporting — in line with international reporting standards (GRI for example)
  • Incorporation of sustainability criteria into sourcing evaluations (Systematic within RFx, Onboarding & ongoing supplier evaluation)
  • Locating opportunities to remove harmful products, components, and/or supplier entities from the supply chain

Sustainable procurement in practice can benefit:

  • Supply Chain Resilience and Risk reduction — Ensure visibility, compliance, and governance within supplier networks to spot potential risks and avoid negative impact as a result of sourcing from a negligent supplier.
  • Decreased costs — Overhead cost savings created from better management of natural resources & better product stewardship can reduce TCO.
  • Revenue growth — Consumers support brands that adopt sustainable business practices as a part of their core business culture. This can lead to increased brand loyalty.
  • Future-proofing — “Developing sustainable procurement practices allows the organisation to future proof themselves against scarcity in supply and changes in social, economic and environmental factors” (cips.org).
  • Product and Supplier-Enabled Innovation (SEI)— Stronger and more collaborative means of communication from the beginning of a supplier relationship harnesses trust and breeds opportunities for innovation.

The Heart of Sustainable Procurement

‘Sometimes all you need is your suppliers’ brainpower, not their margins’.

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