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New ASCM Enterprise Certification Aims to Lift Supply Chain Standards

The Association for Supply Chain Management (ASCM) has released new standards aimed at helping companies assess the ethical, ecological and economic aspects of their supply chain.

Companies who meet the standards are eligible to apply for the ASCM Enterprise Certification, a designation the organization said demonstrates supply chain excellence and transparency.

This has become an aspect of a brand or company consumers increasingly value as they become more educated about supply chain practices supporting a circular economy, ASCM noted.

“More than ever, consumers want to know that the products they buy are not only economically sound, but also manufactured through practices that are ethically and environmentally conscious,” ASCM CEO Abe Eshkenazi said. “Building these ‘triple E’ supply chains provides innovative companies with another platform to achieve competitive advantage, grow their market share and make the world better through supply chain at the same time.”

An ASCM report released earlier this year found that 83 percent of supply chain professionals surveyed considered ethical dimensions either extremely or very important to their organization. However, nearly 40 percent of companies aren’t monitoring their supply chains for ethical practices.

“This gap between mindset and action causes accountability to fall through the cracks, which can damage an organization’s reputation, affecting its overall bottom line,” Eshkenazi added.

Evaluations of the ethical practices of an organization’s supply chain include the review of the supply chain for anti-corruption and anti-trust, codes of conduct, confidentiality of information, human rights and labor practices, intellectual property and patents, and responsible marketing and sales engagement.

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Economic practices evaluations involve a review of the supply chain for business integrity and company reputation, board and corporate leadership, enterprise risk and crisis management, materiality index and differentiated operating models. For ecological practices, criteria include circular economy practices; climate strategy; energy, water and waste; material usage and product lifecycle stewardship.

The development of the ASCM Enterprise Certification leverages the organization’s full body of knowledge, including the supply chain operations reference (SCOR) model, and professional certifications The Standards Guide provides a comprehensive checklist helping to strengthen supply chain strategy.

The organization said early market feedback on the benefits of the ASCM Enterprise Certification for companies include it serving as an unbiased standard demonstrating corporate commitment and accountability to building a circular economy and providing a competitive advantage as consumers become more educated about clean supply chains.

ASCM Enterprise Certification will complement industry-specific endorsements such as the United Nations Global Compact and several International Organization for Standardization benchmarks.