Responsible Procurement Initiatives
As a company, we recognize that we have the moral responsibility and social obligation to make responsible decisions that guarantee both human and environmental health. At UCB Procurement, we have a key role to play to ensure a sustainable future for all. We believe that the best way to have a positive impact on society is by engaging with our suppliers and integrating into our supply chain requirements, specifications and criteria that are compatible with our Green Strategy and the four pillars through which we are integrating Sustainability in our strategy.
We want to work in a way which is sustainable for all patients who need our solutions, for society, for the communities where we operate, and for ourselves. To demonstrate our commitment to this, we have launched two key initiatives:
- A partnership with EcoVadis which aims to raise social and environmental standards throughout our supply chain.
- A carbon reduction program with our suppliers through the Science Based Targets approach developed by the CDP, UN Global Compact, WRI, and WWF.
Suppliers code of conduct
Suppliers code of conduct form a key part of procurement’s efforts to drive sustainability, outlining UCB’s set of values and principles that it expects suppliers should follow. You can find it here:
Find the code of conduct in your language
We have selected EcoVadis to help us assess the sustainability performance of key suppliers, holding them to high standards (UCB itself was assessed by EcoVadis and obtained the silver medal, with a very good score on environment, ethics and labor & human rights). We also support suppliers in building their own sustainability capabilities and will set up improvement plans with suppliers obtaining a score below 45.
For this initiative to be a success, we need our suppliers to be transparent & committed to the cause during the trading of goods or services.
Process for a supplier
Partnerships for the goals
UCB decided to join forces with other pharma companies in the area of Sustainability and joined 2 initiatives : the Responsible Health Initiative (RHI), and Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Initiative (PSCI) which both aim to leverage the influence, resources & expertise of other members. Both programs have their specific characteristics but have in common the aim to improve the visibility, efficiency and sustainability impact of the global health supply chain. Through these initiatives, UCB pursues different objectives: increase visibility, improve recognition & collaboration, encourage & build the sustainability performance of suppliers, share best practices & maximise our outreach.
UCB commits to reducing our ecological footprint under the guidance that it does not make sense to provide our patients with solutions for their diseases on the one hand, while on the other, ignoring the environment they live in. We take our responsibility to the planet very seriously and apply a precautionary approach to the potential health and environmental risks in a scientific and transparent manner. UCB has been actively working on managing our impact for more than 10 years and is continuing to expand our reach.
Having already made significant internal changes towards becoming carbon neutral, the next layer towards achieving our goal is to benchmark and track the carbon reduction progress of our suppliers through the SBT approach developed by the CDP, UN Global Compact, WRI, and WWF. SBTs are ambitious climate targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that align with the level of decarbonization required to keep global temperature increases below 2 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial temperatures.
Working together with external subject matter experts, UCB has designed a survey to gage either (1) the maturity level of our suppliers’ current CO2 reduction plans or (2) the level at which suppliers are willing to begin working towards our shared transition to a low carbon economy. After benchmarking, selected suppliers will be prepared to partner with UCB on 5-year improvement roadmaps.
Through active contribution to our 35% carbon reduction journey, participating suppliers will look forward to the following expected outcomes.
How can you get involved?
If you are reading this, you are already on your way to setting up a 5-year Improvement Roadmap that complies with UCB’s requirements. You should have previously received an invitation to onboard your company onto our SLP vendor management system (if you are an existing UCB supplier but did not receive an email to complete the SBT, please complete the form at the bottom of the page to indicate your interest). Once onboarded onto SLP, you’ll be ready to get started on your journey:
Clarify your understanding of SBT and what is involved
If you are unsure on how to start, the below links are meant to help you understand any part of the initiative that might be confusing. Additionally, you can always contact your UCB Procurement representative to help guide you through this process.
Read and understand all the components of the SBT Supplier Self-Assessment
Submit the SBT Commitment Letter
The below commitment letter informs SBT that your company will work to set a science-based CO2 emission reduction target. If your company already has an emission reduction target, the letter confirms your interest in having your existing target independently verified against a set of criteria developed by the Science Based Targets initiative. Instructions on where to send when completed are included in the document.
Access and complete the SBT – Supplier Self-Assessment Questionnaire
Once onboarded onto SLP, you should receive an email requesting for you to complete the SBT Supplier Self-Assessment questionnaire. With your previously created login details you’ll be able to complete the survey in around 15 mins or less.
Discuss your plan going forward with a UCB Sourcing Manager
Once UCB has received all of the responses from each round of selected suppliers, you will receive contact from your UCB Procurement representative with information about what next steps are (based on your responses to the survey).
Submit your target for validation
Once a target has been developed, your company must complete the Target Submission Form and submit a Word version of the form via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Publish your results:
On confirmation that your target meets the SBTi criteria your company and its target will be showcased on the Science Based Targets website and in other communications. Additionally, you will be able to use the SBT logo on your website and communications. You will be sent a communication welcome pack and will be able to liaise directly with a member of their team.
Continue to work with UCB
Your UCB Procurement representative will be monitoring your company’s ongoing progress towards our joint CO2 reduction targets. In the meantime, continue with business as usual and always feel free to reach out to us should you have additional questions or comments.
“By its very nature, procurement is a vital element for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. It serves as a crucial connector between suppliers and buyers, people and processes, and donors and recipient governments. Whether in the private, public or tertiary sectors, procurement is one of the main channels through which sustainable development aid is delivered.”
- Ban Ki-Moon Former Secretary-General, United Nations
If your company already has a pre-existing relationship with UCB's Procurement Department and would like to be included in our SBT initiative, please submit your information here: