Practices: There Is Still Only One Way to the Top

In Figure 10, we’ve organized global responses to questions about which practices respondents’ firms employ as part of their supply chain sustainability efforts. The bars represent the percentage of respondents who reported that their firm employs each practice.

At the bottom of the staircase are the most prevalent practices, including audits, supply chain mapping, codes of conduct, and certification requests. These frequently applied in-house efforts are, in some sense, table stakes for global supply chain sustainability. The stairway of sustainability practices ascends toward collaboration across the supply chain. As a firm endeavors to ascend the ladder of practices, the focus moves to more sophisticated solutions, like visibility solutions and environmental remediation technologies. Even higher still are active engagements with suppliers and environmental watchdogs in the forms of collaboration and training.

Supply chains inherently require a significant amount of collaboration between partners, but just communicating regularly about your sustainability goals is not enough. You can’t manage what you can’t measure. In order to start moving the needle, supply chain partners need to leverage shared technology that can serve as a single source of truth for them to collectively measure the results of their sustainability efforts.

Brian Cristol, CEO and Co-Founder, Isometric Technologies

Figure 10: “Staircase” of supply chain sustainability practices