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Top Ten Best Practices for "Greening the Supply Chain"

Bryan Jacobs, International Director, Corporate Solutions, Jones Lang LaSalle and Michael Jordan, National Practice Lead, Senior Vice President, Energy and Sustainability Services Consulting, Jones Lang LaSalle (July 2011)
  • 1. Use environmental analysis as a catalyst for innovation;
  • 2. Focus on a list of suppliers prioritized by environmental impact.
  • 3. Manage environmental impacts where they occur-ideally before they occur or get worse.
  • 4. Focus on the business, not social, value that green supply chain management creates.
  • 5. Align green supply chain goals with business goals.
  • 6. Evaluate the supply chain as a single life cycle system.
  • 7. Encourage engagement and collaboration among all key stakeholders and provide training where appropriate.
  • 8. Ask suppliers the right questions. The following questions are common:
    • • Details regarding their corporate environmental goals as well as the policies and procedures they use to ensure minimum impact on the environment
    • • Environmental performance awards, recognition, and certifications
    • • Participation in Carbon Disclosure Project, Global Reporting Initiative, or similar efforts
    • • Internal incentive and governance programs regarding environmental performance at the Board of Directors and C-suite level
    • • Greenhouse gas emissions programs
    • • Ability to identify opportunities for eco-related tax incentives or utility company rebates
  • 9. Listen to the ideas of suppliers for how to assess performance in different industries. Unilaterally announcing a new set of sustainability ratings to suppliers without taking industry differences into consideration may lead to missed opportunities for improvement and other negative ramifications.
  • 10. Utilize technology to support sustainable sourcing efforts.