One thing that we have learned over the past decade from Business Process Reengineering and the implementation of quality standards, however, is that the standards process needs to be incorporated into a company s strategic policies and processes, and is seldom successful if administered simply as a bolt-on. In short, creating an ethical supply chain doesn t just happen ” it needs to be actively managed and fully integrated with a company s normal day-to-day operations.
Companies often have problems when they attempt to implement an EMS in isolation, confirms Robert Pojasek, Adjunct lecturer on environmental science at Harvard University s School of Public Health, because the system does not automatically integrate well into core business practices. Many ISO 14001 implementations have failed because the organization lacked key preconditions, such as widespread environmental concern and awareness within the organization, meaningful management commitment, robust planning, integration of external stakeholders into the process, or a sufficient focus on performance improvement.
These are exactly the sorts of issues that the CERO will have to face in developing an ethical supply chain program, and why it is so important that a company establishes an ethics and risk management framework that includes clear performance indicators, a stakeholder-needs assessment, a supplier management program, and a reporting policy based on GRI standards all of which we explore in the following chapters.