Social Procurement: The Opportunity for Suppliers
Social procurement is emerging across Canada as a powerful tool for building healthy communities.
Local governments, First Nations, universities, colleges, public schools and hospitals on Vancouver Island purchase over $1.5 billion of goods and services each year. These institutions are exploring how and/or taking steps to align their broader policy objectives with their spending to achieve better value for money.
Businesses with social values, social enterprises and social purpose organizations can respond to this growing demand for social value in purchasing.
- Food services, information technology, construction and facilities and maintenance represent the most common areas of spending where social and community benefit criteria are currently applied.
- The most common social benefit provided by contractors is employment and training opportunities for disadvantaged populations, including youth, aboriginal populations and persons with disabilities.
Social Procurement Resources for Suppliers
SUPER (Social Procurement Supplier Readiness) is a suite of tools, resources and training to elevate the capacity of social enterprises and social purpose organizations to access procurement opportunities.
The materials will be free and open source to elevate the capacity of social enterprises and social purpose organizations to access procurement opportunities and contracts that provide the revenue to increase their social value creation. The project is funded by the Government of Canada’s Social Development Partnerships Program.
Respond to Opportunities
As CCSPI members look to connect their procurement to local community benefit, there is an interest in identifying local suppliers who are intentionally delivering environmental, community and social benefits.
In June 2020, The City of Victoria requested information from suppliers able to identify social value elements of their business in order to develop a Social Value Supplier Directory.
The directory will inform local governments across Vancouver Island and the Coast region of suppliers whose practices align with their goals.
Sign Up For Training or Host a Supplier Session
CCSPI offers a variety of training opportunities from introductory sessions to more in-depth learning and non-members are welcome to participate at cost.
CCSPI also offers supplier-specific presentation sessions for members, local chambers and economic development organizations. If you are interested in hosting a presentation for suppliers in your area please contact us.
Social Enterprise Certification
Buy Social Canada’s third-party certification program recognizes your organization as a verified social enterprise, and enhances your marketing potential as a business that actively prioritizes community benefits and social impact over private profit and shareholder returns.