Add Green Thinking to Your Procurement Process

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Procurement refers to the aspects of project management related to obtaining goods and services from outside companies.
Green Procurement
There are a number of areas within procurement that can be enhanced to consider sustainability and help you establish a green procurement approach.
  • Plan Procurements. Green procurement starts with the Procurement Management Plan. The Plan will incorporate green thinking. It is important to understand and note any organizational Environmental or Sustainability policies and standards you are adopting on your project. As you gather and rank the needs against which you will evaluate vendors, you can now include sustainability criteria that the vendors need to meet. You can also establish the weighting factors for these needs and ultimately rate the vendors on their ability to meet your environmental and sustainability requirements.
  • Obtain Seller Responses. In your RFP, you may include information on your organization’s environmental focus (such as describing your GreenPM processes) and have the vendor comment on how they will align to these, or make a general inquiry regarding the vendor’s use of green processes. Each vendor should be able to explain and demonstrate how they help accomplish your environmental goals, possibly describing how they have completed similar goals previously.
  • Select Sellers. Map the vendor capabilities against your requirements and weighting factors, including the environment requirements that you have established. Using GreenPM, it is possible that your vendor selection may result in a different vendor. For example, if your environment requirements are weighted highly, it is possible that there is a vendor with a significant focus in this area who ends up being your top ranked vendor.
  • Administer Procurements. You should validate that the vendor is performing as agreed throughout the project. This includes confirming that the vendor is following green project management processes (GreenPM) and meeting any defined environment criteria for deliverable completion. Procurement audits can be one approach to validating the compliance to your expected standards and processes.
Procurement is not simple and organizations seek to continually streamline and improve their procurement approaches. Green procurement may add another dimension to improving procurement processes.


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