More firms urged to check suppliers

31 March 2004
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01 April 2004 | Andrew Golder

More work still needs to be done to persuade businesses to open up their supply chains to ethical scrutiny, according to Ken James, CIPS's chief executive.

James made his comments after just 19 of the top 100 companies participating in Business in the Community's annual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Index chose their supply chains as an area to be analysed.

He said there were clear benefits for companies willing to embrace the principles of CSR.

"Our view is we need the chief executives to explain to them that if they get this right, it has major advantages, but if they get it wrong there will be serious reputational risks for their company."

He added: "Supply chains are not being addressed as much as other areas in the index and we need to look at that."

James said chief executives were more likely to focus on cost rather than innovation and the level of risk when it came to CSR in the supply chain.

Overall, the utility company National Grid Transco came top of the list. Participation was up by 14 per cent on the previous year with 139 companies using it as a tool to manage, measure and report their CSR. The results also revealed an increase in the average index score from 68 per cent to 80 per cent.


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