Kearney launches tool for gender equality in supply chains

24 November 2020 3 min. read

Global consultancy partnership Kearney has helped launch a benchmarking tool helping businesses improve opportunities for women-led businesses in supply chains. The consultancy is a knowledge partner to the Women4Business Daring Circle, bringing together a network of partners to promote and accelerate diversity in business and supply chains at a global level.

Despite there being an estimated 224 million women entrepreneurs in the world, owning 35% of firms around the globe, fewer than 1% of global corporate or government spend is on women-owned businesses. Consulting firm Kearney worked with the Women’s Forum in 2019 to research the situation more thoroughly. According to the resulting study, many firms are trying to rectify the gender gap in their supply chain spending, however, while over 35% of firms surveyed in Europe and North America had a supplier diversity program, only 18% of those without one were planning to develop one in the future.

According to Kearney, without action now, the findings suggest that almost half of businesses will still not have a supplier diversity program in place by 2022. As a result, Kearney has collaborated with The Women4Business Daring Circle. The Daring Circle, run by the Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society, brings together a network of partners to promote and accelerate diversity in business and supply chains at a global level. Led by P&G, in collaboration with BNP Paribas, Bouygues, Exxon Mobil, Johnson & Johnson, L’Oréal, and Publicis Group, the Circle promotes and accelerates women’s economic empowerment in business and supply chains.

Kearney launches tool for gender equality in supply chainsImran Dassu, Partner at Kearney, commented, “We can no longer ignore the benefits of diversity in every part of business operations. Increasing women’s representation in supply chains will give businesses improved ability to meet diverse customer needs, bring better innovation and competition, and enhance their overall brand. For real change to happen however, it will mean securing the highest level of commitment and buy-in from leaders and developing gender strategies that aim to tackle the root causes of inequality in the supply chain.”

As the Circle’s Knowledge Partner, Kearney has helped to deliver a new digital assessment tool. The Inclusive Sourcing Journey is built to help organisations be provided with specific actions that their company can take to advance equal opportunity in their procurement practices and that benchmarks their positioning against regional and industry peers. The research outcomes from the tool’s launch year will inform the Women4Business Toolkit for Action, a set of materials designed to advance the development and implementation of best practices for supplier diversity and inclusive sourcing.

Chiara Corazza, Managing Director at Women’s Forum for the Economy & Society, added,  “If women and men participated equally as entrepreneurs, global GDP could rise by up to 6%, or $5 trillion. Now, more than ever, we need to act together to realise the full potential of women entrepreneurs and women leaders, and to ensure their full participation and contribution to the economy and society. Therefore, with our partners of the Women4Business Daring Circle, we’re committed to promote and accelerate women’s economic empowerment in business and supply chains.”