UK & Ireland supply chain sustainability

We recognise that it is not just our own direct environmental impact that we can influence. In comparison to other elements of our operations, we believe that the emissions footprint of the products and services we procure are relatively small. However, we remain focused on the need to manage this aspect of our operations effectively and are committed to continually developing our supply chain evaluation processes in line with best practice. In addition, our clients are increasingly questioning not only the environmental practices of their suppliers but also those of their upstream supply chain.

As such, we not only need to understand the performance levels of our own suppliers but also to ensure they meet a minimum set of defined standards.

Our approach

We have a Supplier Code of Conduct (PDF, 143K) in place which we require all of our suppliers to comply with, as specified in our standard supplier contract terms. The requirements have been aligned to Principles 7, 8 and 9 of the UN Global Compact, to which EY is a global signatory.

All suppliers submitting responses to EY are required to complete a standard set of environmentally-focused pre-qualification questions, designed to evaluate their understanding of carbon-related issues and the management of their specific impacts. In addition, we request further information depending on the specific tender in question and whether it may have any particular potential for environmental impact. All responses are evaluated accordingly to a set of guidelines and scored as part of the overall tender evaluation process. This helps to ensure that our suppliers have a responsible approach to mitigating their environmental impacts and they will work with us to minimise the effects of the goods and services they supply.

On becoming a part of EY’s supply chain, our Service Partners must continually assess the environmental impacts of their activities conducted at our sites. Reporting requirements for these self-assessments include an environmental impact assessment as well as relevant / significant emissions data and other related KPIs. In this way we continually collaborate to better understand their most significant and carbon intensive products and services, focus areas for performance improvement and trends in performance over time.

Some previous examples of where we have worked with our suppliers include:

  • Changing the collection/delivery times of our off-site archiving services to significantly reduce the number of vehicle trips made to our offices
  • Employing the knowledge of our waste management contractors to train and increase awareness amongst our staff of recycling facilities and contamination issues
  • Working with our M&E contractor to devise an annual energy efficiency and reduction programme for consideration by senior management
  • Reducing toner cartridge waste by increasing the period they are used for, thus increasing the lifecycle of the cartridge whilst still maintaining performance levels
  • Ensuring our catering supplier minimises food miles, ensures sound provenance of produce used, minimises packaging using recyclable materials
  • Ensuring our internal transport provider (running a minibus service between our London offices) uses the most sustainable vehicles