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Round-Up of Responsible Sourcing Event

November 20, 2017
Posted by Whitney Armstrong

 

On the 9th of November we invited a selection of our influential fashion retail customers to come together and collaborate on how to tackle sustainability issues at our Responsible Sourcing event. Throughout the day Tamsin Lejeune, CEO, Common Objective, kept our discussions on track and shared her expertise. Common Objective is an intelligent business network for the fashion industry, which encourages members to work together and take sustainable fashion from niche to norm, so Tamsin had lots of industry tips to share.

This event was designed to inspire our retail guests to think a little differently about sustainability, and see it as an opportunity to collaborate not a competition. The morning provided a lot of food for thought around raw material sustainability, managing factory relationships and impact reporting.

Some of the key takeaways from these discussions were:

Raw Material Sustainability

  • Collaboration is Key

> This isn’t an area of competition, working together will benefit the entire industry.

  • Be More Important to Fewer Factories

> Stay loyal, it’s in your interest to help the factories grow and be educated.

  • Start Small and Strategically

> Establish a firm foundation and then focus on what matters most to your brand.

  • Unified Data Approach > Leverage a solution that allows you to report on all material categories in one place

Managing Factory Relationships

  • Visibility is Paramount

>Gaining a deeper understanding of the factory roles – subcontracting, Agents etc.

  • Be Mindful of Culture Differences

>Consider the abilities and reluctance of international factories. Agree a common way of working.

  • Trust and Relationships

>Build connections with your suppliers so they are willing to share the tier data you need.

Impact Reporting

  • Baseline Approach

>Setting goals and understanding measurable targets.

  • Data Connectivity

>Getting a clearer view of all audits (internal and external) by connecting all data in one place.

  • Keep it Simple

>Report in a way that makes it easy for suppliers and share information to get a fuller overview.

The event highlighted several commonly encountered sustainability challenges, from quality deficits and high margins, to company culture being the make it or break influence on a brand’s sustainable initiatives. Although committing to sustainability can seem like a challenge, our guests all agreed that working closely together with their suppliers, other retailers and software providers, is the key to unlocking all the benefits being sustainable brings and catering for conscious consumers.

Thanks to all who attended and to our partner Common Objective! Share your sustainability thoughts with us @adjunosolutions.

 

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Whitney is a key member of the commercial team within Adjuno, based in the UK, she is responsible for assisting with the sales and marketing of its supply chain solutions. Whitney has a range of experience from working within compliance at a global healthcare company, to customer service for various companies in the retail industry.