DiverseCity Counts Reseach Rates Supplier Diversity

November 30th, 2012

“This ground-breaking research represents the third pillar of the diversity conversation. Many of us have embraced the value of employee and leadership diversity. But diversity in procurement remains a lever we have yet to exploit.” Ratna Omidvar, Co-Chair, DiverseCity: The Greater Toronto Leadership Project

Improving the diversity of suppliers has become a growing area of interest. The City of Copenhagen and the recent London Olympics both developed diversity charters to guide procurement. In Toronto, the latest DiverseCity Counts report, Supplier Diversity in the GTA: Business Case and Best Practices, shows that while most organizations have employee diversity policies, significantly fewer have supplier diversity programs. Not having such a program in place is a missed opportunity..

The latest DiverseCity Counts research, by Dr. Paul D. Larson, CN Professor of Supply Chain Management at the University of Manitoba, examines whether, why and how organizations have embraced diversity in their purchasing and supply chain strategies, policies and practices. The research focused on organizations that buy goods and services from other organizations that are at least 50% owned and operated by visible minorities.

Organizations that do have a supplier diversity program credit much of their success to top management commitment and efforts to work closely with current or future suppliers. Some organizations report difficulty finding qualified minority suppliers or determining which organizations are led by visible minorities. Of those organizations with a supplier diversity program, 29% do not track how much they spend on goods and services provided by visible minority owned companies.

When the largest GTA companies are compared to large Chicago headquartered firms, Chicago companies are three times more likely to have a supplier diversity program – 77.4% versus 23.3%. This difference can be partly explained by U.S. federal and state policies which encourage companies to make supplier diversity a priority.

Read the full report, Supplier Diversity in the GTA: Business Case and Best Practices, or download the summary of the research.

Source: DiverseCity

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