Building long-term relationships

We aim to build long-term direct supplier relationships which helps us to work over time with our suppliers to safeguard human rights. This may have a number of additional benefits. For example, a long-term relationship may provide increased certainty for their businesses, may lead to increased efficiencies and productivity, and may result in the delivery of enhanced services and products.

For example:

  • Bunnings merchandising team and buying agents are responsible for building long-term relationships (some formed more than 30 years ago) with suppliers, with a common vision towards a responsible and sustainably sourced supply chain; 
  • Kmart and Target have joined the ILO/IFC  Better Work Program as a buyer partner. The Better Work program aims to make sustainable improvements in working conditions within the garment industry and make the sector more competitive overall. Kmart and Target’s ethical sourcing team work in partnership with the Better Work program on long-term improvement plans for factories;
  • Industrial and Safety is committed to building long-lasting supplier relationships that include a continuous improvement methodology. This is sustained by an established off-shore office in China (44 per cent of Industrial and Safety own-brand spend in FY19 was in China) and partnered sourcing offices in Bangladesh and India further supporting the Industrial and Safety sourcing model by facilitating supplier interaction in local language wherever possible; and
  • Many of Officeworks supplier relationships date back to the founding of the business twenty-five years ago, and have evolved into strategic partnerships that have regular business review meetings covering topics including ethical sourcing performance.


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