supplier ASSESSMENT FOR A PHARMAceutical COMPANY
The pharmaceutical company is part of a multinational group that implements a global environmental management approach. The company has been certified ISO 14001 for many years and is recognized as the ‘best in class’ within the group.
Both the company’s Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) manager and CPO felt that major sustainability risks existed within the supply chain as the majority of suppliers were SMEs with limited resources and systems to manage the increasing levels of regulation around environmental, WHS, social issues and the associated business continuity risks. There was a need to assess what gaps existed in this area and to then define where the company should focus its attention and build the capabilities needed to manage sustainability.
Our work started with developing a practical tool to assess the sustainability performance of the suppliers’ operations and products from 4 strategic packaging categories (plastic, sleeves, paper-cardboard and glass vials). The tool was aligned to the ISO 14001 approach in order to embed it in existing and well-known practices in the company.
We then developed and sent out a supplier questionnaire and supported the Procurement Team in communicating with suppliers and analyzing their responses. It was also really important to ensure that suppliers considered the project as a way to develop their own sustainability capabilities and strengthen their relationship with the company.
We finally presented the outcomes of the project to the CEO, CPO and HSE manager and discussed the priorities and action plan for the next 3 years. The first year plan included supplier development plans, the organisation of a one-day workshop with all suppliers and the development of a guidance document for other companies of the group.
The project demonstrated the company’s commitment to sustainability and that it was at the leading-edge of what innovation and sustainability best practice looks like. It was selected as a top-3 finalist in the ‘Sustainable Procurement’ category at a renowned procurement award event, which was attended by the group’s Vice-President Supply Chain and Manufacturing.