Supplier diversity is a priority for 70 % of organisations around the world , according to a survey conducted by JAGGAER and TealBook this year . However , most organisations have not started , or have only just started , on their journey towards greater supplier diversity and inclusiveness .
The main obstacles hindering progress are difficulty identifying suppliers that are owned or managed by women and Minority-Owned Business Enterprises ( MWBEs ) that also meet procurement criteria and a lack of data and insights into supplier diversity . The survey uncovered wide divergences on the issue between North America and Europe .
While the majority of organisations regard supplier diversity as a priority , they also face serious challenges . A third of survey respondents stated that one of the two biggest obstacles to progress is ‘ difficulty identifying diverse suppliers that also meet procurement criteria ’ while a further 27 % identified a similar challenge , namely , ‘ lack of supplier diversity data and insights .’ A further 17 % replied that they felt unable to verify supplier diversity claims .
More than 11 % stated that they simply ‘ don ’ t know where to start .’ European companies wishing to increase supplier diversity are also challenged to identify MWBE suppliers in tier 2 and beyond .
“ Small and diverse businesses are the pipeline for innovation and have increasingly become a board level ESG requirement ,” said Stephany Lapierre , TealBook CEO .
“ Until recently , the complexities of these requirements , along with the timeconsuming and cumbersome disparate supplier updates , have made it incredibly challenging to capture and access these businesses . That ’ s now possible with the combined powers of TealBook and JAGGAER , which removes these barriers and integrates supplier diversity data within the sourcing process , reporting and tracking supplier diversity spend with ease and accuracy .” x
More than half ( 53 %) of North American survey respondents stated that supplier diversity is a ‘ high priority ,’ but this fell to just 17 % among European organisations .
The survey suggests that Black Lives Matter movement and calls for diversity have had a strong influence in North America , where 68 % stated that they agreed or strongly agreed with the proposition that this heightened internal pressure to boost supplier diversity initiatives .
“ Our work with customers around the world has revealed a growing awareness of the positive business benefits of diversifying the supply base to include more MWBEs and this is borne out by the survey ,” said Jim Bureau , CEO , JAGGAER .
In North America , reputational impact is seen as one of the two biggest benefits by 66 % of respondents , whereas 55 % of Europeans cited supplier innovation . Many respondents also mentioned improved internal culture and greater competition within the supply base .