We understand our reputation and good name are amongst our greatest assets and could easily be lost by actual or suspected unprincipled behaviour. To support good governance and ethical behaviour across our Group, our actions and those of our employees, suppliers and partners are guided by a series of Group policies.
Being a collaborative, trusted partner
Diverse and robust supply chains enable us to provide quality and timely delivery of products and services. Our supply base design is balanced to meet our customer, regulatory and financial performance requirements. It considers supply chain risk and addresses appropriate mitigating actions.
We review our business-critical suppliers on an annual basis to address any risks or concerns. To support this process we have invested in an AI risk monitoring solution that will allow us to map our supply chain ecosystem, monitor activities and alert us when hidden risk is exposed in our sub-tier supply chain. This has been rolled out in Q1 FY22.
Over the past year we have undertaken a structural reset of our procurement and supply chain, appointing a new Chief Procurement Officer to lead its transformation. We have also made strong progress with the implementation of the Group Procurement and Supply Chain operating model and standardisation of key business processes.
Working with SMEs
We recognise the value that SMEs play in the wider economy and we actively encourage them to engage with us. We will continue to engage with both smaller and local suppliers, especially those that help inclusion of under-represented groups, which fosters economic prosperity and societal integration.
Working with SMEs also ensures that we have access to innovative new solutions and provides enhanced flexibility and agility. As part of the wider Group procurement and supply chain strategy, we expanded key performance indicators throughout FY22 to measure and monitor our percentage spend with SMEs. This is now a key measure within the procurement and supply chain function and our performance against benchmark targets is subject to ongoing management review, which supports both our decision-making and any actions required to support the growth of our SME supplier population.
Payment to suppliers
We understand the importance of predictable payments when running a business and will ensure good practice across the Group.
17 legal entities submit returns to Companies House according to the Payment Practices and Performance Regulations. 11 of our legal entities are signed up to the Prompt Payment Code and are compliant as of 31 March 2022. Procurement methodology to calculate average payment days across the group has changed this year from an average to weighted average approach. The average payment over the past six months to March is 24.6 days, versus 23.5 days last year. For reference, using last year’s methodology, the equivalent figures would be 30.5 days over the past six months versus 29.6 days last year.
Fair operating prices
Our group-wide Supplier Code of Conduct is designed to provide clarity about our expectations of suppliers, including compliance with all applicable laws. While we recognise that our suppliers operate in different geographic and economic environments, we expect that products and services are delivered in a way that support Babcock’s high standards and contribute to the reputation of Babcock and our customers.
Code of business conduct and ethics policy
Our Ethics policy comprises a detailed manual, available to employees on the Group’s intranet and also available on our website. It supports extensive policies around anti-bribery and competition law that clearly show our zero tolerance for any form of bribery or anti-competitive behaviour.
We treat breaches of our Codes or associated guidance seriously. Employees can raise any concerns that our Code or its associated guidance is not being followed without fear of unfavourable consequences for themselves. Our independent whistleblowing hotline, EthicsPoint, (operated by NAVEX Global) allows for confidential and anonymous reporting and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in all territories where we are based.
Our Ethics policy, Code of Business Conduct and Suppliers’ Code of Conduct can be found on our website.
Scope 3 carbon emissions mapping
We are currently conducting an assessment of upstream Scope 3 emissions (categories 1 and 2) to establish data for Babcock’s upstream value chain emissions.
A spend-based calculation methodology is being adopted for the mapping activity to produce tabular and graphical results for Babcock’s upstream value chain emissions and provide a baseline for developing Babcock’s carbon strategy further.
Our intention is to reduce the environmental footprint of our supply chain and provide social benefits to society in parallel with meeting our business goals. We continue working to align our processes and standards to ISO20400 (Sustainable Procurement) including circular economy principles such as recycling and disposal options. A strategic roadmap has been developed which establishes the framework required to integrate sustainability within procurement and supply chain activities, driven by the need to deliver sustainable outcomes through our supply chain. Our procurement and supply chain business processes will continue to be developed and aligned to ISO20400 guidelines throughout 2022, with a view to full alignment by the end of 2023.
To support this intent we have published a new Supplier Sustainability policy which is being rolled out to our supply chain through planned communication activities and supplier engagement events during FY23.
In the UK, we expect our suppliers and extended supply base to adhere to the Modern Slavery Act 2015, as we do ourselves. We expect all our overseas suppliers to understand and comply with the intent of the Act. Modern slavery considerations are included as part of our risk management and supplier selection processes and we will continue to review our approach to training our employees and ascertaining risks in regards to the prevention of modern slavery.
If it is discovered that there has been a breach of the above, or any other relevant, declarations and legislation, we will take all necessary steps to mitigate any impact. Our Modern Slavery Transparency Statement is reviewed and approved annually by the Board.
Babcock is an international company and we are committed to conducting our dealings with the utmost integrity. We are committed to the protection of human rights and we comply with all national laws in the jurisdictions in which we operate. We welcome the opportunity to contribute positively to global efforts to ensure that human rights are understood and observed. We believe that a culture of respect for, and promotion of, human rights is embedded throughout our business and can be demonstrated by our commitment to ethical conduct in everything we do. We recognise the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the standards established by the International Labour Organization. Our suppliers and their extended supply chain are expected to share this commitment.
We are committed to conducting business honestly, transparently and with integrity. It is the right and proper way to behave, ensuring we uphold high ethical standards across the Group. It also supports our long-term success.
We understand our reputation and good name are amongst our greatest assets and could easily be lost by actual or suspected unprincipled behaviour. To support good governance and ethical behaviour across our Group, our actions and those of our employees, suppliers and partners are guided by a series of Group policies. These are reviewed periodically to ensure that they continue to meet current best practice principles and legislative needs. By establishing transparent policies and procedures we can reduce risk to our business and to our customers.
Babcock is a member of the joint UK Ministry of Defence and industry Defence Cyber Protection Partnership (DCPP) which is an initiative to ensure the defence supply chain understands the cyber threat and is appropriately protected against attack. Babcock is represented on all the working groups and DCPP executive committee, as well as other defence security forums.
Babcock applies all required international and government security standards for installation and secure operation of Information systems. Babcock’s core IT services are certified to ISO27001 (Information Security), ISO22301 (Business Continuity) and Cyber Essentials Plus, which is mandatory for all suppliers of UK Government contracts that involve handling personal information and providing certain products and services.