Results show a lack of maturity in supply chain sustainability programs, despite growing regulatory pressures.
OTTAWA, ONTARIO, January 24, 2023 – Assent Inc. (Assent), a leader in supply chain sustainability management, recently surveyed global complex manufacturers on ESG efforts across the supply chain. The study found that 76% of manufacturers are at the planning or foundational stages of supply chain ESG maturity and 69% plan to increase their supply chain ESG and sustainability investments in 2023. The results of the survey are included in The State of ESG in Manufacturing study, which was created in partnership with Endeavor Business Media.
Download the report here.
The study highlights that ESG and sustainability management, including supply chain climate impacts, continue to gain importance for manufacturers. Results showed that 55% of complex manufacturers cited climate impact as a current supply chain ESG priority at their organization, but only 31% are highly confident in the quality and accuracy of their organization’s supply chain data. This indicates that better data collection and supplier engagement will be key priorities for 2023 as supply chain ESG impacts come under increased regulatory scrutiny.
“This new research emphasizes that manufacturers are deeply aware of the critical need for credible supply chain ESG data to sustain business growth and meet stakeholder expectations,” said Andrew Waitman, CEO of Assent. “At the same time, there is an urgent need to improve supply chain visibility to meet evolving ESG standards and requirements. There is a gap that needs to be addressed immediately as only 25% of complex manufacturers are highly confident that their suppliers have the capabilities today to credibly support their supply chain initiatives. Companies who are accelerating their ESG are in the lead as they will maintain market access, grow their business and deliver responsible products to the world.”
Of the more than 150 manufacturing leaders in North America and Europe who contributed to the study, most (87%) agree that ESG and sustainability practices are being prioritized within their supply chains as they face growing pressures from key stakeholders to accurately and defensibly report on their sustainability progress. However, the majority currently lack the supply chain transparency needed to meet this demand.
“While growing demand for supply chain sustainability is well reflected in planned increases to ESG and sustainability budgets, the fact that only 31% feel highly confident in the quality and accuracy of their data indicates a lack of depth in manufacturers’ current programs,” said Sarah Carpenter, Director of Corporate Responsibility at Assent. “Best-in-class programs demonstrate a deep understanding of, and confidence in, supply chain data that allows year-over-year growth in program maturity and performance. Assent’s ESG solution allows complex manufacturers to build supply chain sustainability programs they are confident in.”
With a rapidly changing global regulatory and compliance landscape, complex manufacturers must address evolving legal obligations and engage proactively with suppliers to protect themselves from violations, reputational damage, and loss of investor confidence. In the instance of existing, pending and proposed global regulations like the EU Forced Labor Ban, the SEC Mandatory Climate Disclosure, and the German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act, non-compliance can lead to loss or lack of market access, legal ramifications and even the required destruction of non-compliant goods, all costly.
Assent’s cloud-based ESG solution, Assent ESG, delivers comprehensive global supply chain management and reporting capabilities. Combined with Assent’s regulatory expertise and supplier education programs, manufacturers can better prepare for near-term and future reporting requirements, identify material risks and safeguard market access, reputation and revenue. The study found that 59% of respondents expect their dependency on partners and suppliers to increase in the next year, highlighting the market need for cross-supply chain collaborative solutions.
Summary of key findings from the report:
- 76% of manufacturers are at the planning or foundational stages of supply chain ESG maturity
- 69% expect their supply chain ESG/sustainability investments to increase in the next year
- 80% say their organizations are somewhat to extremely dependent on partners and suppliers to help them achieve supply chain sustainability/ESG goals
- 59% expect this dependency on their partners and suppliers to increase in the next year
- 25% of respondents reported having high confidence in the capabilities of their partners and suppliers to support their ESG/sustainability goals
- 31% said they are highly confident in the quality and accuracy of their organization’s supply chain data
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About Assent Inc.
Assent is the supply chain sustainability management solution dedicated to helping complex manufacturers bring responsible products to the world. Because supply chains were never built with sustainability in mind, Assent goes deep: past the suppliers of parts, down to the parts of parts and beyond, to map the entire complex manufacturing genome. Shaped by regulatory experts, customers, and suppliers, Assent is the foundation for cross-enterprise sustainability. Headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, Assent employs more than 1,000 team members dedicated to customers across the globe. Assent reveals what’s hidden, validates what’s good, and helps eliminate unwanted surprises so the world’s forward-thinking complex manufacturing companies can become more sustainable businesses. Learn more about deep sustainability – from product compliance to ESG – at assent.com or join us at Assent Careers.