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Green Procurement and IT Take Back Schemes

As businesses continue to move towards sustainable and environmentally friendly models, procurement teams are being tasked with considering the circular economy and end of life options, such as take back schemes at the time of purchasing equipment in order to keep products in the value chain for longer.

In Denmark a programme has been initiated between the government and public authorities to support this sustainable shift to public procurement in order to support transition to a circular economy. Through this partnership, members work to integrate procurement policies that emphasise circular economy criteria, such as extended product lifespan. Not only does this assist in developing a sustainable future, the economic impact is significant with a transition to a circular economy worth around EUR 2 trillion to the European Union, around 19% of GDP.

Brighton & Hove Council are also leading in the green procurement space, setting targets of 75% sourcing of products through the Circular Economy to meet their business needs, showing that this concept is becoming widely adopted.

A model that is regularly used within green procurement is a supplier take-back system in which products such as laptops or phones are leased or rented and returned to the supplier at the end of a products life-cycle for refurbishment or re-manufacturing, and ultimately redistribution.

The challenge that companies face when entering into these types of agreements however is knowing whether or not the equipment that they are purchasing or returning meets quality standards, requirements, and that confidential information has been erased correctly.

To meet these specifications, independent checks, either periodically or on a spot basis, assists with the monitoring of equipment flows and addresses any conformity issues.

With a global presence Alfred H Knight has the ability to deploy auditors to carry out Information Technology Asset Disposal Audits for electronic take back schemes, providing the desired assurances that businesses need in terms of quality and confidentiality.

To enquire about how our services can help your business begin to consider sourcing products from the Circular Economy, contact us here.

Patrick Le Mare
Circular Economy-Industry Lead