How to get started with sustainable procurement?

Benefits of sustainable procurement

With spend in supply chains representing an average of 60% of an organisation’s budget, procurement strategy and processes have a profound ability to affect the social, environmental and economic sustainability of business at large.

The power of procurement to contribute, both positively and negatively, to sustainable objectives has never been so widely recognised.

Globally, the recently published ISO 20400 on Sustainable Procurement addresses how organisations can integrate sustainability within procurement. ISO 20400 was contributed to by 52 countries via their respective national standards organisations. This represents:

  • 65% of the world’s population
  • 85% of the world’s GDP
  • 73% of the world’s carbon emissions.

In Australia, an inquiry into modern slavery in global supply chains is currently underway. Following the UK’s Modern Day Slavery Act established in 2015, Australia aims to release its own Modern Day Slavery Act in mid-2018. The Australian legislation will require organisations to disclose their actions to identify, mitigate and remedy incidents of Modern Slavery.

It’s becoming increasingly evident that organisations will have to address sustainable procurement sooner rather than later, but how do you balance this with other business imperatives?

The good news is that rather than being a roadblock to achieving business objectives, sustainable procurement can contribute to these by increasing reputation and brand recognition, and contributing to revenue growth, improved consumer confidence and better supplier relationships.

ISO 20400 outlines the varied benefits of sustainable procurement, and introduces seven core subjects, illustrated in the figure below:

Regardless of the size or type of your organisation, all elements of ISO 20400 are applicable in some way. Procurement can help an organisation to:

  • convert sustainability principles into an effective supporting procurement strategy and policy framework.
  • modify existing procurement practices to drive sustainability goals
  • establish risks and priorities and monitor implementation, realisation and reporting.

Not sure where to start? Progress, not perfection, is the key.

Download your free copy of our sustainable procurement white paper today and find out where to get started. You can download your copy below.

Get started with sustainable procurement

What you will learn:

  • The applicability of ISO 20400 to your organisation
  • How implementing ISO 20400 has the potential to generate competitive benefits
  • How the adopting of Life Cycle Costing can assist in the decision-making process
  • Five things you can do to get started.