“Gender equality is directly linked to sustainable development and is vital to the realization of human rights.”

This article sets out the key benefits of Gender Responsive Procurement (GRP) What is Gender Responsive Procurement?  Gender-responsive procurement is about companies leveraging their purchasing policies and practices to promote gender equality and support social and economic progress through gender-responsive measures at all stages and tiers of procurement and supply chain. All companies stand to benefit from gender equality and women’s empowerment. By including a gender lens in your buying decisions, you can expand your company’s markets, diversify its supply chains, enhance its reputation, unlock innovation, adaptability, agility and opportunity as well as grow the economy. Encouraging your suppliers to do the same can accelerate progress – and it is possible to mainstream gender as part of your procurement strategy without compromising quality, efficiency, cost savings and value for money.

The business benefits of Gender responsive procurement? UN Women highlights the evidence-based business case for gender-responsive procurement in its report, Procurement’s Strategic Value: Why gender-responsive procurement makes business sense, which outlines the following business benefits:

Increased revenue and reduced procurement spend

  • There is more business development and growth as a result of companies creating a gateway for more women’s enterprises and gender-responsive enterprises to compete for sustainable business opportunities.
  • As businesses thrive, their owners and workers earn income that may make them both cost-attractive suppliers and potential customers.
  • Companies seeking local, diverse businesses could also see cost-savings through increased competition and reduction in shipping, freight, and other costs.

Greater supplier availability and resilience

  • Companies can mitigate the risks caused by single source supply chains by expanding, localising, and diversifying their current supplier base, which may also increase resilience in the face of extreme weather events and other results of climate change.
  • By gaining a deeper understanding of how suppliers operate, companies can identify and address potential vulnerabilities in the supply chain.

Enhanced brand reputation

  • Enhanced brand reputation amongst customers, peers, investors, and employees supports business growth and brand loyalty.
  • As consumers become more likely to buy from purpose-driven brands, companies must ensure they are catering to consumers in all their diversity, including gender-responsive suppliers.


Written by: Nyaradzo Muchawaya

Edited by: Astrid Aafjes