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BUSINESS ACTION 61 Business in the Community Forthcoming BITC supplier diversity events include: 6 March 2007 - “Slices of the Cake 2” Workshop incorporating meetings with minority-led businesses in West and North West London 15 March 2007 - “Procurement Possibilities - Making Sense of Tendering” workshop for SME’s on the skills for successful tendering 29 March 2007 - “Private Sector Supply Chains” - Roundtable bringing together the Food and Drink sector and minority-led SME suppliers to discuss issues around doing business with the retail sector. For further details on these events or on any aspect of the programme contact Snowia Hussain, Supplier Diversity Manager at snowia.hussain@bitc.org.uk Case study Enterprise Rent-A-Car (ERAC) wants to get the best value from suppliers and in its experience, companies with diverse ownership offer flexibility, competitive pricing and the ability to get them the products and services they need when they need them. In terms of challenges, Enterprise found that coming from the US it did require some cultural education. The company operates from the view point that supplier diversity is ‘doing the right thing’ and a part of the giving back to the neighbourhoods where they do business - that needed a little explanation. Secondly, finding a database and building their own was and remains a challenging exercise as it largely remains an emerging issue in the UK. Lastly, implementation is always a challenge. Will it be successful or do we have the right approach for our business and so on. To take a purely bottom line approach, at first, can sometimes only tell half a story as it is in the relationships that are established that business benefit is defined. A great way to establish those initial relationships is through MSDUK, which Enterprise is a founding member and their Finance Director is the treasurer. Via the Supplier Diversity East Midlands network (now Minority Supplier Development UKMSDUK) ERAC has met with several minority-owned businesses to familiarise themselves with the services on offer. Two recent examples of ERAC’s commitment to broadening the diversity of its supplier base are the contracts awarded to two women and ethnic minority owned businesses. Impact • Contract awarded to Canary Wharf and City a recruitment firm specialising in technology recruitment. This company has helped ERAC successfully fill technology vacancies as well as provide bespoke services to help them with recruitment in other functional areas of the business • Contract awarded to Portable Group a company that delivers courses that are designed in partnership with the client. ERAC’s partnership with the company is ongoing and has supported Portable Group in being seen more favourably with other potential clients • ERAC’s total number of diverse suppliers currently stands at more than 37% • The estimated value of contracts with diverse supplier was $6.3 billion US dollars in 2006 Canary Wharf & City first met with with Enterprise Rent-A-Car in the Spring of 2006. They attended an event where Daryl Scales, Enterprise Rent-A-Car’s Finance Director, presented an overview of the company’s operations in the UK & Ireland and the firm’s commitment to broadening the diversity of their supplier base. Canary Wharf & City were delighted to take the opportunity to pitch for business a couple of weeks later at the firm’s European headquarters. Following their successful bid, Canary Wharf & City have gone on to help Enterprise successfully fill technology vacancies as well as provide bespoke services to help them with recruitment in other functional areas of the business. Processes ERAC believes diverse companies perform better. They compete more effectively for talent, cultivate more loyal customers, have fewer conflicts, and can better spot opportunities. ERAC considers its future success depends on its ability to reach out to people of all backgrounds, including new and existing customers, current and future employees, and service providers. ERAC must build a company that reflects the diversity of the marketplace it serves, and must continue to extend itself to new, growing and ever-changing communities and populations. This is the reason why ERAC continues to engage with a diverse supplier base. The supplier diversity policy for the company is set on a worldwide basis but is implemented on a regional basis. Within the UK and Ireland fewer levels of management means that procurement is generally undertaken by heads of departments which makes for closer working relationships with suppliers. ERAC has also implemented an intensive 2-day diversity training course for all employees which will help and support employees to understand the reasons behind the firm’s commitment to engage with diverse suppliers. ISSUE THREE 2007 engage | uk