Transparency in your supply chain is a vital step in ethical sourcing and procuring. Achieving gender equality is only possible when adequate reporting, monitoring and transparency happens. With proper reporting companies can clearly communicate the ongoings of their supply chain with their stakeholders, customer base, suppliers and employees. There are three key aspects to supply chain transparency: internal transparency, transparency between suppliers and buyers and then external transparency. When companies commit to becoming transparent, they are committing to more ethical supply chain practices. Becoming more legally compliant, being able to identify and monitor risks in the supply chain and then work to reduce them, all the while communicating with affected parties. Finding out the inequalities in your supply chain is the first step to addressing them.
Your business must be fully committed to the goal of transparency. To do this, communication has to be a core value within your team. Having set and clear goals that everyone is aware of is vital. These goals must aid the overall objectives of transparency and equality. Goals that can be communicated clearly to all employees. Creating a sense of collective action within your company. Monitoring and reporting supply chain practices is a key part of achieving transparency and equality. Having people in your team committed to reporting the processes within your sourcing and procurement is essential to transparency.
As a buyer in the supply chain, setting clear expectations for your suppliers will help with achieving your goals. These expectations could be documented in the form of a two way code of conduct. Whereby, buyers and suppliers have set out expectations for the business conduct between them. Expectations covering the rights and wellbeing of all employees in the supply chain, reporting and monitoring the processes taking place, and the overall impact of supply chain practices. As the buyer, you can also request social auditing of the facility that you are purchasing from, or request details of employee demographics, rights and standards. With these clear boundaries established, a transparent and communicative relationship can occur. As part of this communication, the buyer must be able to articulate their needs to the supplier. Having a clear idea of what you expect from your suppliers will help avoid potential risks, as the relationship has been established with boundaries.
Once there is a company wide commitment to transparency and expectations set out for your suppliers, external transparency is the third aspect. Reports on your supply chain practices can be used to communicate with stakeholders and customers. Reporting and monitoring is an ongoing process, and should be done frequently in order to track progress. Shareholders can then be updated on all changes, and impacts of policy changes. Issues can be identified and rectified. Making reports available to the public allows your customer base to have an understanding of your supply chain practices. Often creating a trusting relationship between company and customer. Conscious consumers want to be aware of the impact that purchasing choices are having on people and the planet. Public reporting gives a sense of transparency and honesty. Over time it allows consumers to see positive changes being made. Focusing on your internal and external practices for full supply chain transparency for ethical sourcing.