Facilities Management: How to create a more eco-friendly supply chain?

Facilities Management: How to create a more eco-friendly supply chain?

As a Facilities Manager, it’s often your job to find more sustainable ways to run a workplace. One way to make a significant impact on your sustainability efforts is to assess how ‘green’ your supply chain is.

In this blog we look at how to create a more eco-friendly supply chain.

Audit your current situation

Start by assessing your current situation. What are the various elements of your supply chain, and which parts seem to create the highest carbon footprint? Is there any long-distance haulage? Or factories that produce waste, or use hazardous chemicals?

Once you’ve assessed your supply chain through the lens of sustainability, you’ll be able to identify areas that could be improved.

Check your supplier’s ESG credentials

Then you can go into more detail about your suppliers’ commitment to sustainability.

There are a few ways to check how seriously your suppliers take their environmental considerations. You can have a look on their website for any published information about their ESG efforts. You’re looking for information about how they handle: waste, carbon emissions, and workplace safety.

But a really quick check is looking for an ISO 14001 accreditation. If they’ve achieved the ISO 14001 standard, then they adhere to strict environmental standards.

Review your contracts

Have a look at the contracts you have with your current suppliers. Have you set out any environmental key performance indicators? Or have you imposed any minimum standards of environmental compliance?

You can add clauses into your contract to make your suppliers’ operations more sustainable. They could be Net Zero clauses, or clauses for requirements for renewable energy. The Chancery Lane Project has numerous ready-made, climate-aligned clauses that you can insert into your contracts.

Choose local when you can

Of course, you want suppliers who are the best people for the job. But wherever possible, if there’s an option to choose a local supplier, you can give this more weight in your procurement assessment.

Local suppliers will be less costly in terms of carbon emission for travel. And in turn, you’re supporting your local economy.

Pick suppliers who use technology wisely

Most companies want to show that they’re innovative in their use of technology. But it can be surprising how effective technology can be in reducing your impact on the environment.

Suppliers like cleaning companies can have a big impact on your sustainability efforts. For example, cleaning companies that use technology wisely minimise their water usage in their operations.

Other suppliers may now have fully EV fleets to reduce their carbon emissions. At SGS we’ve invested in hybrid vehicles for our managers, and whenever we need to use a vehicle at a client’s premises we take an EV.

And some suppliers deploy methods for paperless working to reduce waste. One of the ways we do that as a business is to use an online daily occurrence book. Our security officers use MiSentinel to update the log book, which not only means that our clients store less paper, but also means all entries are legible.

We’ve replaced plastic badges with electronic ID badges to reduce waste. Not only does that minimise our plastic use, but we don’t expend resources and energy on ink and printing.

Take some time to assess how your suppliers are embracing new technology to minimise their impact on the environment. Then choose suppliers who make this a priority.

What we do at SGS

At SGS, we have all our Corporate Social Responsibility information published on our website We invest in green initiatives and we invest in technology to reduce paper consumption and waste. If you choose to partner with us for security services, we suggest ways to make our operations as effective and efficient as possible for you.

Please get in touch if you’d like to learn more.

We take processes apart, rethink, rebuild, and deliver them back working smarter than ever before.