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Building a Sustainable Procurement Strategy that Matters: Start with Why.

Embarking on the journey of sustainable procurement and responsible sourcing often begins with a fundamental question: Why? Even seasoned procurement organisations find themselves revisiting this question periodically, and for good reason. In this blog post, we'll explore the various compelling reasons why integrating sustainability into your procurement process should be a top priority for YOUR ORGANISATION.

Why, you ask? Because understanding the "why" empowers you to construct a robust business case for sustainable procurement that aligns with your unique needs, steering clear of fleeting trends and fads.

Hand holding a 'why' card against a backdrop of vibrant green leaves, symbolising the importance of understanding 'why' in sustainable procurement


External pressures

One of the primary drivers for sustainable procurement stems from external influences. For companies operating within Europe, the weight of legislative pressures, particularly those associated with the upcoming Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive, looms large. With more than 49,000 companies falling under its purview, the mandate for responsible sourcing is undeniable. Additionally, the desire to shield your reputation and prevent a catastrophe akin to the Rana Plaza disaster is a formidable motivator. In some cases, staying competitive in a market populated by sustainability champions necessitates following their lead to safeguard your market share.


Direct stakeholders

Sustainable procurement often becomes an imperative when your stakeholders —investors and clients— insist on enhancing your organisation's sustainability credentials. Their expectations can become a driving force, compelling your organisation to take significant steps towards sustainability.



Intriguingly, the sustainable path occasionally intersects with the most economically sound route, even in the short term. Consider the realm of energy efficiency, where sustainable solutions, especially the ones devoid of significant capital expenditures, frequently emerge as the immediate cost-effective choice. Moreover, offering sustainable products can not only resonate with your customers and consumers but also bolster your market share, or even open doors to entirely new markets.



Lastly, sustainability drivers may be deeply embedded within your company's values and mission. Perhaps your goal is to attract top-tier talent by using sustainability as a magnet for a workforce increasingly attuned to ecological concerns. Alternatively, your organisation's leaders may be impassioned advocates for sustainability, galvanising the entire company towards a sustainable ethos, including the procurement department and the supply chain.


In answering the question, "What are our sustainable procurement drivers?" there exists no right or wrong answer. Each company's context is unique, and uncovering YOUR company's drivers represents the pivotal first step in formulating a sustainable procurement strategy with enduring impact. This self-awareness provides the "why" behind your actions, enabling you to target initiatives that promise the most profound influence. So, start with "why" and unlock the potential of sustainable procurement for your organisation.


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