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Sustainable Procurement Barometer 2021

July 29, 2021

From Resilience to Opportunity: Sustainability Pays Off Through the Crisis and Beyond

Despite the fears that it would negatively impact sustainability progress, the COVID-19 pandemic has consolidated corporate sustainability goals at the top of the executive agenda. Sustainable Procurement Barometer 2021, developed jointly by EcoVadis and the Value Chain Innovation Initiative at Stanford Graduate School of Business, provides critical insights into the growing recognition that sustainable procurement is fundamental to building resilience throughout organizations and supply chains, mitigating risk and driving results.


Key findings include:

  • Labor and human rights issues shape procurement strategy. In order, procurement organizations are prioritizing labor and human rights issues, followed by the environment, social issues, and business ethics, in their two – three-year strategies.  

  • Procurement is now paying attention to diversity, racism, nondiscrimination, and equity. 61% of procurement leaders say social issues will be “more important” or “significantly more important” over the next two to three years.

  • Sustainable procurement proves key to supply chain resilience. 63% of corporate respondents, and 71% of supplier respondents, report that their sustainable procurement initiative helped them endure the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Sustainability performance is critical for revenue and growth. 69% of respondents are taking sustainability performance into consideration when selecting new suppliers and renewing contracts – up from 51% in 2019.

  • Mid-sized companies (from $100M to $1Bn in revenue) are embracing sustainability. 48% believe sustainability will have a net positive financial impact on their business, while 47% expect a sustainable approach to lead to improved operational efficiency and lower costs.

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