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Tips for Creating a Successful Supplier Diversity Program

Published on
January 11, 2023 at 10:00:00 AM PST January 11, 2023 at 10:00:00 AM PSTth, January 11, 2023 at 10:00:00 AM PST

With the current focus on #inclusion and #equity spurred by increasing social unrest and economic disillusionment, there has never been a better time to create a strong #supplierdiversityprogram for your organization.

Such a program will encourage and maintain business partnerships with suppliers that are, at the minimum, 51% owned and operated by a group that has been historically underserved or underrepresented. Some of these businesses may include, but are not limited to, #veteranowned, #womenowned, #minorityowned, #disabledowned, and #LGBTQIA+ owned companies.

#Procurementleaders must face several challenges when creating a supplier diversification initiative, but a successful program will result in demonstrable, long-term value and cost-effectiveness for your business. To assist, we’ve curated some helpful tips.

Developing a Strong Supplier Diversity Program

Building a #supplierdiversity program need not be difficult. At its essence, it is simply an expanded group of suppliers from which you may choose to purchase goods or services. But creating one that will last — and provide real value for your business, requires the following actions:

Target Your Metrics

A program’s success can only be understood if it can be tracked and measured. Your company should have clear goals and measure them through key performance indicators (KPIs). Typical KPIs to help you track diversity initiatives include:

Diverse Spend and Count — How much money you are spending with a specific number of diverse suppliers.
Jobs Created — How many jobs your relationship with diverse suppliers has generated in your local economy.
Overall Cost Savings — How organization spending relates to bottom line revenue over time.
Impact of Revenue — The impact of your diversity program over total revenues, both earned and projected.

Of course, you can create your own metrics according to specific challenges and goals. As long as you are tracking, you’ll be able to chart your progress.

Start at the Top

Commitment to this type of program must begin at the top in order to be successful. Once you’ve defined your diversity targets, such as more racial diversity or an emphasis on women-owned businesses, you should create a corporate policy or mission statement that encompasses your goals. Then, make sure you have C-Suite buy in, with a specific administrative leader who will oversee program goals and help raise awareness within the company.

Build Awareness

Now you must build awareness of your program — both internally and externally. Your C-Suite mentor should help develop an internal training and awareness program for your procurement team as well as all staff, so they are aware of your corporate policies regarding diversity. But you should also practice outreach, working with local chambers of commerce, networking groups, and other organizations to assist in finding and mentoring diverse suppliers for your program. 

At Quality Imaging Solutions LLC, we know how difficult it can be to get started with supplier diversity. There are many issues to consider, from how to track your progress to getting your employees on board and #sourcing#diversesuppliers. As a print and imaging supplier with 20 years of experience providing top quality service and supplies to our clients, we are proud to also be state and federally certified as both a woman-owned and disadvantaged business. 

We would be proud to be a part of your diverse pool of suppliers and happy to introduce you to the many ways working with us can benefit you — and your bottom line. Just contact us today and let’s get started!