Promoting sustainable supplier diversity would spur job creation and boost economic growth in South Africa, Klein Inc Management Consultants owner Venete Klein said on Wednesday.
Speaking at the South African Supplier Diversity Council’s (SASDC’s) first yearly conference, held in Johannesburg, she pointed out that sustained supplier development could instill proudly South African business and identity.
SASDC is a corporate-led initiative promoting supplier development, particularly the development of new black enterprises that could be integrated into the supply chains of large businesses..
“Our rich history has left us with many areas that we are almost over-developing, such as the financial services sector. But at the same time, our history has also ensured that we have other areas that we are completely underdeveloped in.
“In this context, we need a SASDC and its codes, as a direct result of our past. We know that supplier diversity is new in South Africa and since the council opened its doors in January 2010, it has seized the opportunity created by a fractured system, that has by design left a group of people out of the mainstream development.
“With the council’s key focus areas being the establishing and maintaining a database of certified black owned suppliers, as well as sharing knowledge, support and best practice, it has resulted in supporting certified black suppliers to access procurement and development opportunities and ensuring supply chain transformation,” Klein said.
SASDC is affiliated to a global network of five supplier diversity councils, including US-based National Minority Supplier Development Council.
National Minority Supplier Development Council president Joset Wright said that corporate members should learn from their American counterparts. “I encourage you to learn from the things that they have done in the US and in the world, as they have taken on the challenge of supplier diversity in their global market place,” she said.
The SASDC currently hosts 22 corporate members, and has certified 142 suppliers, which promotes sustainable supplier diversity through targeted procurement and black supplier development.