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CIPS Sustainability Index

Supplier sustainability audit

Benchmark your suppliers’ organisational sustainability with
CIPS Sustainability Index (CSI)
– the independent, cross-sector financial, social and environmental supplier audit

Developed by procurement experts, CSI offers a comprehensive, simple, fast and cost-effective online assessment of environmental, economic and social sustainability. Currently available in the UK and Ireland but with plans to go global, it is the only independent, verified measurement tool available, allowing suppliers to prove their sustainability credentials and buyers to obtain essential sustainability information in a more efficient way than via individual and lengthy questionnaires.

  • As a buyer, CSI gives you a better view of your supply chain and reduces your supplier risk
  • As a supplier, CSI helps you to demonstrate excellence in sustainability to industry-approved levels, strengthening information sharing with your customers and supporting your new business bids
  • Download the CIPS Supplier Sustainability Review July 2015


Working in close collaboration with buyers and suppliers, we have developed the CIPS Sustainability Index (CSI) as a platform to accurately measure or demonstrate the sustainability practices of suppliers. 


Designed to reduce internal buyer processes, CSI replaces lengthy questionnaires with tailored and relevant online questions. Moving the focus from environmental sustainability to include economic and social pillars offers you a detailed, rounded view of your suppliers. In turn, this will allow you as a buying organisation to identify any required improvements in these sustainability credentials and extend your supplier database. Once you have registered, our CSI team will work with you to develop a programme which exactly suits your needs.


Suppliers who frequently receive questionnaires from buyers will speed up their processes considerably by using the standard, consistent set of questions posed by the CIPS Sustainability Index. After registering your company information, you can complete your tailored questionnaire at leisure, which will be reviewed and scored by our team of experts. From here, they’ll give you your fully accredited score, which you can then share with your buyers or potential buyers via our online portal.

Benefits - Supplier

Cost effective: Completing the CSI independent assessment just once, for one fee, is more efficient than completing individual questionnaires from buyers which often ask common questions. The CSI score and detail can be provided to all your customers, saving you time and money


Relevance: The CIPS Sustainability Index questionnaire is customised and tailored according to an organisation’s size and sector


Access: Individual user accounts offer increased personal service, with dedicated customer support on hand


Expertise: A highly trained, specialist evaluation team calculates the final score of each supplier, offering independent recognition of sustainability to each organisation indexed


Feedback: Insightful analytics, scorecards and benchmarks specific to each organisation’s size and sector ensure feedback that’s easy to understand and interpret


Approval: Proof of benchmarking comes in the shape of the CIPS Sustainability Index rating and certification badge


Support: Best practice guidance will help suppliers to enhance their offering and keep abreast of current industry requirements


To find out more,  visit our Suppliers page. 

Benefits - Buyer

Cost effective: Registration is free to buyers and time saved on evaluating supplier responses means purchasing staff can be diverted to areas of higher value


Comprehensive: Focusing on the three pillars of economic, environmental and social ratings, the CIPS Sustainability Index offers a detailed and thorough mechanism for evaluating suppliers


Integration: The online collaborative platform is easy to use and incorporates well into existing supplier management strategies, with full customer support provided throughout the process


Reassurance: All suppliers’ ratings are determined by specialist and highly trained evaluators, giving peace of mind that the scores have been established by independent industry professionals


Risk management: CIPS Sustainability Index supports effective supplier management and risk reduction


Development: New, accredited suppliers can be easily identified, helping organisations to meet ongoing sustainability requirements

To find out more, visit our Buyers page. 


Learn how EDF Energy are using the CIPS Sustainability Index to support their ‘Better Energy Ambitions’ programme

Sustainability is a growing concern. April 2017 saw the launch of the world’s first international standard for sustainable procurement – ISO 20400. Meanwhile issues such as modern slavery are increasingly on the agenda, and news about business ethics and human rights have brought greater attention to organisations’ social and environmental policies. Examples include FIFA’s announcement that they have added human rights and sustainability standards into the contracts associated with staging the World Cup.

Find out how EDF Energy is using the CIPS Sustainability Index to support their ‘Better Energy Ambitions’ programme in this webinar recorded in June 2017. You will hear from EDF team members Mark Barnett and Katie Evans, and from Graeme Poole of the CIPS Sustainability Index team.

In this 40 minute webinar you will hear:

  • What Sustainable Procurement involves, and how it has changed over time
  • The common challenges being faced by Procurement teams in relation to sustainability
  • How the CIPS Sustainability Index can help you address these challenges
  • How EDF Energy is using the Index to support their ‘Better Energy Ambitions’ Programme

To view the webinar, go to: http://cc.readytalk.com/play?id=h2hy7x


To find out more about the benefits of CIPS Sustainability Index contact us or talk to the team on:

+44 (0)1582 395 822