Prepare for the Walmart Sustainability Index with updates from Walmart's head of sustainability
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Today, Walmart discussed their new Sustainability Index via a GreenBiz.com sponsored webcast, Getting Ready for the Sustainability Index. While many suppliers may feel they have a daunting task ahead of them, today’s speakers, Rand Waddoups of Walmart and Joel Makower with GreenBiz.com, were able to break it down so that any supplier can get on board.
The Walmart Sustainability Index Assessment, introduced by the retailer back in July, will start with a 15 question survey assessing the environmental impact of a company’s global supply chain. Rand emphasized with this first assessment, due starting October 1st, it is critical to know that the initial goal is simply measuring. In the webcast he said, “We want to know that you’ve measured your impact. If you’ve measured it and begun making progress, that’s even better… All things being equal, a [Walmart] buyer will of course choose a product that scores better on the Index.”
Walmart has requested suppliers to start taking action through tracking and reporting which can begin to unveil how they may make further progress on sustainability goals. By taking these small steps now, what may initially feel as a burden can turn into a competitive advantage and uncover value opportunities. Here are three things we found interesting about the assessment:
1. Results of the assessment will be weighted within each of these four categories:
- Energy & Climate: 30% of score
- Material Efficiency: 30% of score
- Natural Resources: 20% of score
- People & Community: 20% of score
2. Based on their individual score, suppliers will receive the following simple ranking:
- Above Target
- On Target
- Below Target
3. Walmart has collaborated with leading universities and academics that have teamed together to create the Sustainability Consortium who is leading the way to establish a scientific foundation to measure consumer product sustainability. In simple terms, Walmart in partnership with the Consortium have two goals for their suppliers:
- Short-term: Track & Measure
- Long-term: Innovate & Improve
For more information about Walmart and the Sustainability Index, visit GreenBiz’s page dedicated to monitoring the Index.
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