Over the years, sustainable supply chains have become a vital and crucial element of social corporate responsibility. More and more, consumers will demand sustainable practices from businesses, and laws and regulations will be put in place to steer supply chains in a more sustainable direction.
When talking about sustainability, consumers often focus their attention on the environment. However, sustainability is a combination of social, ecological, and economic environments. As companies continue to review their business strategies and investments, they also need to start considering sustainable supply chains.
A study conducted by CDP shows that the impact of end-to-end supply chains on emissions is more than five times that of companies’ direct operations. Studies such as these show that there is an imminent need for supply chains to make sustainability a priority.
There is no easy path to sustainability, however, it is likely that it will soon become the only viable choice for a company's long-term success. Consumers are more aware of the effects of sustainable practices in the world and will continue to push environmental issues into discussions for businesses across the globe.
So how can you start your path to sustainable supply chains?
- Create a detailed map
Mapping your entire supply chain will provide you with an overall view of the impacts and risks that you may have. This will allow you to understand what are the environmental, economic, and social challenges that you are facing and how to solve those issues.
- Optimize your supply chain network
Optimizing your supply chain network can reduce the negative effects of the constant movement of materials and finished goods across the supply chain. A good example of this is to increase your localized sourcing. This will limit the transit time for your goods, as well as support your local community.
- Leverage technology
Technology can be an amazing ally in your path to sustainability. The advances in technology provide companies with the ability to analyze, measure, and change operational processes such as distribution, order, transportation, and inventory management. Those insights can be used to explore opportunities for sustainable processes.
Implementing a sustainable supply chain takes time, effort, and dedication. However, once it is implemented, it can deliver measurable business benefits, such as more environmentally focused consumers, scarcer resources, and a long-term success for your company.
If you want to know more about the benefits of sustainability for supply chains, feel free to contact us!
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