There is a particular emphasis in ethical sourcing around diversity, or the practice of sourcing, qualifying and purchasing from smaller, more economically disadvantaged businesses. The concept of diversity in procurement includes the support of these groups by giving them equal opportunities to bid and win contracts. Segments of business that typically require special considerations are those considered at a competitive disadvantage, or a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE), which is at least 51% owned or controlled by a socially and economically disadvantaged individual. Specific DBE’s include minority-owned, women-owned, service-disabled, veteran-owned, etc.
Best Practices for a Diversity Initiative
The following actions should be put in place when incorporating diversity and inclusion into the procurement process:
In addition to sourcing from diverse and minority suppliers, other means of support can be provided, such as financial assistance, training and mentoring, and business and technology assistance.
Measurable goals for a diversity program are necessary in order to communicate the expectations and measure progress. Examples of goals include: