Building a strong and reliable supply chain is fundamental to sustainable operations. Sustainable procurement helps to reduce waste, contributes to decent work and enables economic growth. We purchase a diverse range of products and services, with the bulk being professional, real estate and corporate services. Engaging suppliers may carry financial, legal and reputation risks. As such, we consider environmental and social issues alongside financial factors when making procurement decisions.
Our procurement is managed by the Group Procurement and Services (GPS) team, under the Technology and Operations support unit. GPS functions in accordance with the following:
The Sustainable Sourcing Principles (SSP) have been central to our approach since 2017. The SSP outlines the expectations we have of our suppliers in four key areas – human rights, health and safety, environmental sustainability, as well as business integrity and ethics.
Our SSP sets out the minimum principles and standards of behaviour that we expect of all suppliers. All new suppliers are reviewed against the SSP during registration and at regular intervals as part of our ongoing supplier management process. In 2018, we developed an assurance checklist in accordance to the SSP and conducted selected onsite assurance. The sustainability risk materiality assessment further helps us identify spend categories with high ESG risks. Our last biennial assessment for Singapore was carried out in 2017 which identified 18 high-risk categories. For competitive tenders in high-risk categories, we incorporated organisational sustainability into the evaluation and selection of suppliers. This sourcing philosophy encourages our suppliers to consider more sustainable solutions and modes of operation.
We incorporated circular procurement practices in our supply chain, and trained our sourcing managers to work with our suppliers in the responsible management of materials and conservation of resources. Some of our key initiatives include eliminating the use of single-use plastic bottles and reducing packaging for laptop delivery. Consequently, associated freight costs and related carbon emissions were also reduced.