The ability to demonstrate a positive social and environmental impact is fast becoming “non-negotiable” for hospitality sector suppliers, after research found a majority of business leaders will only deal with responsible supply chain partners.
The research by Sodexo found two thirds (66%) of business leaders say they have already started replacing suppliers in the last year that don’t live up to their diversity and inclusion values.
A similar proportion (65%) have stopped working with organisations in their supply chain that do not align with their own environmental policies.
The research shows that although UK businesses still place the greatest emphasis on factors such as cost, financial stability and cyber security in their procurement, social values are increasingly featuring in the decision-making process with 92% of those polled saying they now vet suppliers on their social values and impact, and 75% warning they would be put off by a prospective supplier that did not publish information about their social values.
However, there is also scepticism among business leaders over the extent to which warm words translate into actions with almost three-quarters (73%) of the 250 UK business leaders polled agreeing or strongly agreeing that businesses often have a social value policy in place but don’t necessarily follow it.
“It is often said that you can tell a great deal about someone by the company they keep,” said Sean Haley, Sodexo UK and Ireland regional chair. “This is also true for businesses. It is now clear that the ability to demonstrate a positive social impact is a non-negotiable.”
Sodexo commissioned the survey to mark the launch of its 2021 social impact pledge.