Answers to Frequent Questions

What’s the ROI of Sustainable Procurement? How can I engage my suppliers? How can I move beyond compliance to create value?

As with any new initiative, you will face many unknowns when launching or growing your sustainable procurement program. Fortunately, hundreds of companies have come down this path before you with many of the same questions and issues.

Summarized below are the most frequent questions we hear, and links to the resources, such as our blog and papers in our Library, where you will find answers or guidance.

If you have a question not covered here, don’t hesitate to contact us.

What’s the ROI? Is there really a financial and operational return in adopting sustainable procurement practices, and how can I measure it?

The link between CSR and financial performance has been an issue at the core of its acceptance by the business world. Well, there doesn’t have to be a compromise, you can feel good about doing good, as well as keeping the balance sheet happy…

Read the blog post: Why Bother With the Correlation Between CSR and Financial Performance…? …Because There Is One!

Read the paper: Sustainable Procurement Barometer: Time to Measure Value Creation!

Read the paper: Value of Sustainable Procurement Practices

So you’re leading the charge to create a sustainable procurement initiative — now you need to recruit your boss, team, board, and others to support you…

It is very difficult to convince management to invest in sustainable procurement. It will require not only money and resources, but also time and can involve an overhaul of the entire procurement process. 

Read the blog post: 5 Ways to Sell Sustainable Procurement to Your Boss

Read the paper: 5 Steps to Building the Business Case for Sustainable Procurement

How much does a supplier monitoring program cost? And how much can we (Buying organizations and Suppliers) save with a mutualized rating platform?

“How much will it cost?,” “What can I do internally,” and ‘’What should I outsource?” Here are some guidelines and tools we’ve developed over the past eight years working with over 120 procurement teams from global multi-nationals, to help you gain some insight on these questions…

Read the blog post: How Much Does a Supplier Monitoring Program Cost?

How can I engage my suppliers?

The majority of companies are not interested in assessing suppliers for the sake of assessment, but rather they are looking to drive improvements, reduce risks, and push towards innovation in the supply chain…

Read the blog post: 5 Rules for Supplier Engagement

Read the blog post: Best Practices for Supplier Sustainability Assessments

I’m already performing on-site audits. Why do I need CSR assessment/monitoring?

The empirical evidence overwhelmingly indicates a significant gap exists in making audits a truly effective tool for supply chain risk management. Creating real transparency over the long-term and driving meaningful improvement in practices requires a more holistic approach that includes a multi-layered assessment and engagement program…

Read the blog post on Audits (Part 1): The Limitations and Evolving Role of On-Site Supplier Audits: 4 Reasons They Are Starting to Miss the Target

Read the blog post on Audits (Part 2): Maximizing On-Site Audits: A Multi-Faceted Approach to Supplier CSR Performance Management

Our supply chain is already fairly compliant. How can I go beyond this to best-in-class performance to drive lasting improvements and innovation with our supply network?

Five key elements emerge have enabled leaders to shift the focus of their programs to a performance mindset that engages suppliers in long-term sustainable procurement value.  Companies are reaping the rewards not only in risk reduction, brand enhancement, and new revenue growth, but also in improving their total impact on the planet and the communities they touch…

Read the paper: Beyond Compliance: 5 Pillars of Sustainable Procurement Value Creation

I’m concerned about asking my suppliers to pay for assessments.

Asking suppliers for co-financing of audits was hardly heard of some years ago, but now most major companies conducting CSR assessment are requesting their suppliers’ financial participation. And you know what? It is working…

Read the blog post: Should You Be Afraid to Ask Suppliers to Fund Their CSR Assessments or Audits?