We can't deliver our sustainability priorities on our own. We need to work in partnership with our suppliers to make sure they work according to the same standards and principles as us, and that they share our objective of delivering sustainable digital lifestyles too.
We describe our supply chain as the ‘engine room' for making sustainability happen. It's the process that makes our products and services, so it's the most powerful way to address our sustainability impacts.
We use many suppliers across the UK and across the globe, which generates lots of sustainability risks and opportunities. So it's important that we have a good visibility of what's happening across our supply chain. We can't know everything that's happening all of the time, but we do work with our immediate suppliers to clarify exactly what we expect and what needs to need to change.
We've outlined a set of sustainability principles in our Supplier Code of Conduct, and we expect our suppliers to follow it. It covers three areas:
We work with our suppliers to make sure they have the right policies and procedures in place to meet the expectations in our Code, and that they use these in dealing with their own suppliers.
In 2010, we set ourselves the target of making sure all the suppliers that we work with through Group Procurement sign up to the Code. It's been more challenging than we thought, but it's full steam ahead until we meet this target.
Our Code defines the basic expectations that we have of all of our suppliers. It's also the starting point for the conversation we'll have with suppliers on sustainability issues. We'll use it to build a more focused and targeted approach to identifying sustainability risks and opportunities in our supply chain in 2011 and beyond.
When we're identifying risks, we'll put together some simple criteria that will help us get to the critical issues first. At the same time, we'll be working with those suppliers that can help us meet our wider sustainability targets, on issues like creating a more diverse workforce. This way, our collaboration with suppliers makes a big contribution to our overall goal to deliver sustainable digital lifestyles.
You can find out more about Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability at Virgin Media at our website: virginmedia.com/sustainability. Here, you'll find everything from our policies to our previous reports, plus some handy FAQs. Check out our short films too, where you can really see what we've been doing to become a more responsible business.