Congratulations to GSK!

GlaxoSmithKline, the pharmaceutical and consumer health products giant, won the top award at a conference celebrating supplier diversity programmes of British companies.

In an era of widespread supply chain disruptions, there are calls for more resilience and a rethink of supply ecosystems. 

Diversified procurement policies are now a boardroom topic in many organisations. It may already be in your company. And forward-thinking procurement leaders are already ahead of the curve.

As the sponsor, Onepoint’s Founder & CEO, Shashin Shah, presented the best corporate programme award to Nitin Kapoor, VP, Procurement COE for GSK. 

The award recognises the conference organiser MSDUK’s corporate members, who have demonstrated exceptional commitment and leadership through their supplier diversity programmes in the UK.

The finalists — AstraZeneca, Cummins, and GSK — are all prime examples of what can be achieved by a commitment to drive progress in supplier diversity. 

Many large enterprises are increasingly recognising the importance and benefits. Over 100 big name companies are MSDUK members. Most have joined in the last 12 months.

Why is (supply chain) diversity so important?

Our previous article, Why diversity and inclusion are good for business, presented evidence on how broadening the diversity of suppliers positively impacts business outcomes. Similarly, from the boardroom to the workforce, diversity within companies is also good for business.

Only the beginning

Mayank Shah, CEO of MSDUK expanded on ethnic diversity of suppliers in an address.  

Less than 1% of corporate spend in the UK goes to ethnic minority businesses (EMBs). Yet 1 in 6, nearly 1 million businesses, are classified as EMB owned or led. They employ over 3 million people or 10% of the paid workforce.

Rebalancing this would be an opportunity to tap into the agility and innovative ideas that diversity of thought brings. There are competitive advantages to be created by having some of the most entrepreneurial communities as part of your organisation’s value chain.

“When everyone gets included, everyone wins.”

In its analysis of how inclusive procurement is good for business, the EQUIP (EQUality In Procurement) Europe report makes several key points. 

Many large companies start their supplier diversity thinking with a corporate social responsibility (CSR) lens. Opening up opportunities to disadvantaged groups plays to this agenda. 

But the opportunities for value creation do not end there.

Resilience of the supply chain is one. Working with more suppliers means there are fewer points of failure and more flexibility to switch to alternatives.

Innovation and agility are another. Smaller suppliers are usually keen to explore creative options — both commercially and technically. Suppliers from diverse backgrounds bring different points of view that can help with new product development and address untapped markets.

Applying the CSR lens opens other sources of value. Being “seen as good corporate citizens – and thus broaden[ing] their appeal to customers, employees, policymakers, investors and other stakeholders” brings its own upsides, states the EQUIP Report.

What is Onepoint’s angle on this?

As an ethnic minority business, we have been at the forefront of helping our clients with their supplier diversity efforts for over 15 years. We are proud to serve business and procurement leaders of enterprise-class businesses like Flight Centre, TUI, Vision Express, and Meggitt, as a trusted technology services provider. 

Connect with us if you’re curious. We’d be delighted to share our experiences and explore how we could help with your business ambitions.