July 05, 2023 | Supply Chain Software
Although organizations know the importance of incorporating environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles into the supply chain, many still struggle to achieve comprehensive ESG tracking and visibility.
To overcome these hurdles and improve visibility and traceability across the supply chain, companies need to embrace a strategic approach.
Organizations must venture upstream, downstream, and through the maze of suppliers and partners to achieve full visibility. However, this requires meticulous planning.
In this blog post, we look at five effective strategies that can help organizations drive ESG visibility and traceability across their supply chains.
Procurement teams can integrate ESG assessment questionnaires aligned with established reporting standards. By creating an ESG assessment scorecard, organizations can rate suppliers based on their ESG performance, emphasizing the importance of sustainability throughout the supply chain.
Leading organizations with ambitious ESG targets may find that their supplier network lags in implementing effective ESG strategies. To address this challenge, organizations should adopt a collaborative approach by engaging and educating suppliers about the importance of ESG goals. Collaborative initiatives can include knowledge-sharing sessions, training programs and mentorships to support suppliers in their ESG journey. Such partnerships create a win-win situation, where clients and suppliers mutually benefit from improved sustainability practices.
Using emerging technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain can give organizations an edge while trying to improve visibility. From real-time data on product usage, performance and maintenance requests, IoT-enabled devices can empower organizations to optimize inventory, consumption and extend product lifecycle.
Blockchain provides stakeholders with transparent and secure communication options across the supply chain. It grants upstream visibility to downstream stakeholders and consumers. It can also help organizations track Scope 3 emissions, material provenance and safety throughout the production process.
To achieve a truly sustainable supply chain, organizations must engage and partner with end users. By establishing channels for communication and feedback, companies can promote circularity efforts, optimize product usage and encourage responsible disposal. This engagement helps drive behavioral change among consumers and creates a closed-loop feedback system that contributes to product/service improvements.
ESG considerations should be integrated into the design of products and services from the outset. Taking a holistic approach to product lifecycle management enables organizations to identify potential environmental impacts and develop mitigation strategies. By designing for the long term and considering aspects such as waste reduction, recyclability and energy efficiency, companies can create products and services that align with ESG principles.
ESG visibility and traceability across the supply chain is a formidable challenge, but it is a challenge that companies must embrace wholeheartedly.
Apart from enhancing ESG visibility and traceability, the aforementioned strategies empower organizations to track Scope 3 emissions, monitor material provenance and safety, promote circularity, and ensure compliance with human rights and ethical practices.
As the world moves towards standardized reporting and regulatory requirements for ESG, companies that prioritize visibility and traceability across their supply chains will not only meet compliance obligations but also gain a competitive advantage. They will forge alliances with suppliers and consumers, driving positive change and contributing meaningfully to sustainability goals.