How can procurement lead the way?

Responsible and ethical procurement is your team’s opportunity to be seen as leading the strategic direction and having a real influence on your company’s brand vision ultimately affecting how the company is perceived by its stakeholders, customers, suppliers and investors.

    Recognition for Ethical Procurement

    Showcase your great work in this area by entering for a Supply Management Award for Ethical Procurement. Respected as a benchmark for excellence, the Award is the most prestigious global recognition an organisation in the procurement and supply profession can receive. This year it was won by Sheffield City Council for public sector and the World Wide Life Fund in the private sector.

    Read their stories:

    Sheffield Council win SM Awards 2019 Ethical Procurement Award

    World Wild Life Fund embed ethical criteria in every step of the way

    Find out more about CIPS Supply Management Awards and register your interest for 2020

    CIPS Training

    Ethics e-learning and test

    Ethical behaviour is everyone’s responsibility working throughout an organisation. The Ethical Procurement and Supply e-learning and online test continues to help anyone in the profession to build confidence in employers, suppliers and colleagues. Also if you want to apply for Chartered professional status you will need to make sure your ethics certificate is up to date. It includes over two hours of e-learning resources and is designed to help procurement and supply chain professionals all over the world to demonstrate their absolute commitment to, and understanding of, acting ethically on behalf of their organisations.


    British Legion Case Study

    The Royal British Legion prove their commitment to ethical procurement by achieving the Corporate Ethics Mark

    In October 2019 Leigh Kopec MCIPS, Head of Procurement & Contract Management at The Royal British Legion and his staff of 8 proved their commitment to responsible and ethical procurement by successfully completing the CIPS Ethical Procurement e-learning and test and being the first Charity to achieve the CIPS Corporate Ethics Mark.

    We interviewed Leigh to find out more about why he felt it was important.

    About you

    We are the Procurement Team at The Royal British Legion, the largest armed forces charity in the UK. We are a team of nine responsible for £110m of third party spend. All of us are full-time in procurement and undertook the e-learning and test.

    Why did you feel it was necessary to you as an organisation?

    As a new function at The Legion, we have been transforming procurement to include new and better ways of finding and working with suppliers. It’s crucial both internally and externally that we are aware of ethical and sustainable sourcing practises. We are here to safeguard the expenditure of generously donated funds and to ensure we maximise the value from that spend, which we see as far more than financial value. Demonstrating robust understanding and processes that mitigate supply chain risk is integral to our approach to sourcing goods and services. Having the CIPS Corporate Ethics Mark evidences how crucial this is to us and validates our approach internally and externally.

    How did you get the funding?

    All nine members of the procurement team are CIPS members, and are either MCIPS qualified or somewhere on their journey to becoming MCIPS. As CIPS provide the test free of charge to members the cost impact was only the time given to the team to complete the training and test which I saw as time very well spent in terms of CPD and improving awareness and knowledge within the function.

    What was the general feedback from the team?

    All members said it helped to raise their awareness about key issues and has kick-started a third party ethics and sustainability work stream within procurement to improve our policies and processes across RBL. Most said the training was extremely detailed and the test is actually quite challenging, which is a positive thing. This is not a ‘whizz through the training’ and an easy tick box test at the end as many eLearning things can be. It requires concentration and thought which means the learning really does go in.

    Have you promoted your achievement outside your organisation?

    We only received the Mark this week, but we included our aim to work towards this in our recently shortlisted CIPS Awards submission. We are now proudly displaying the Mark on our email signatures and are integrating it, with some copy, into our intranet site and our externally facing documentation (e.g. ITTs). We have also celebrated receiving the Mark on social media (Linked In) which has had an incredibly positive response from across the procurement and supply sectors. The reaction internally has also been very positive with an article being penned for our internal communication magazine The Legion.  

    Would you recommend it to others?

    Absolutely, for CIPS members it is free to do and for non-members provides an inexpensive way of keeping up to date. The training is really worthwhile, far beyond the value of having the certificate at the end. It will remind you of some key things to look for in supply chains and will help you to think about how you address ethical and sustainable supply within your organisations. For the sake of a couple of hours, the value you get from going through the training is really worthwhile. And you have a lovely certificate to proudly display at the end of it all.

    For CIPS members it also entitles you to apply for Chartered Status, assuming you have the requisite CPD, so for me personally it was crucial I did this. Three of my nine team members have now upgraded to Chartered status since completing the ethics training.

    Corporate Ethics Mark

    Ethical Procurement e-learning and test for individuals

    Chartered status

    Being all inclusive

    Diversity and inclusion is often missed off the ethical agenda and

    has become a liability in today’s marketplace, costing companies talent, growth and innovative solutions.

     From the workforce to the supply chain, diversity and inclusion of people and ideas are critical drivers for further growth in any organisation and no longer the ‘box-ticking’ exercises of the past. Forward-thinking organisations are truly embracing and committing to diversity as an integral part of improving profitability and profits, and outperforming the competition.

    Diversity and inclusion guidance

    CPO’s tell us to focus on inclusion

    Stamping out modern slavery

    There are believed to be 35.8 million people enslaved worldwide. Types of slavery include child trafficking, forced labour/debt bondage, forced labour, sexual exploitation, criminal exploitation and domestic servitude.  Forced labour in the private economy generates US $150 billion in illegal profits per year. Both the UK and Australian governments have now passed legislation to help stamp this out.

    UK Guidance

    Australia Guidance

    The COOP supporting victims of modern slavery

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