Varian focuses on strengthening supply chain sustainability by developing a shared mindset with our key suppliers to build resiliency and flexibility, and by helping to remove any barriers to social and environmental improvements. We take a partnership approach at a local level to share best practices with our suppliers.
Working With Our Supply Chain
Varian’s direct supply chain comprises up to 1,000 material suppliers – mainly manufacturers of parts and components in the U.S., Europe and Asia – and service providers. We categorize key suppliers by criteria such as importance to our operations and level of spend.
Effective engagement with suppliers is important for risk mitigation, regulatory compliance, tender requirements and growing interest from customers and the investor community. By engaging to improve sustainability performance, we can also realize mutual benefits from greater efficiency, resilience and strengthened collaboration.
Driving Efficiencies in Product Transportation
We are continuing to drive cost efficiencies and reduce carbon footprint through optimizing the transportation modes we use to deliver products to our customers, and through more precise forecasting. As a result, we were able to convert approximately 75 machine shipments from air to ocean freight over a 12-month period, and thus reduce our carbon footprint for those shipments by approximately 90%.
Engaging Through CDP
As a member of CDP’s supply chain program, Varian has disclosed climate change information through this internationally recognized reporting platform since 2011. In parallel, we established intensity-based targets within our Scope 1 and 2 activities and are currently evaluating an absolute GHG target based on climate science.
As part of this journey, we have selected CDP as a key tool for understanding our supply chain footprint and engaging with our strategic suppliers to manage issues of environmental risk and climate impact. Aiming to involve more of our supply chain in environmental risk management, we have expanded the program by 50% to reach 105 suppliers, including some indirect service providers for the first time.
We have continued to deploy our environmental risk survey among our strategic supply base, and in the second year of the program have achieved a higher level of engagement from active suppliers. In the second year, 56 suppliers have responded to the survey, up from 35 suppliers the prior year, representing an increase of 60%.
We are investigating tools to dynamically monitor compliance and a variety of risks associated with our global suppliers, including those related to natural disasters, operational capabilities, financial, geopolitical, workplace health and safety, and legal issues.
Our longer-term strategic initiatives include:
- Embedding scoring in the vendor scorecard as a tool for monitoring and improving sustainability performance.
- Collaborating with key partners to provide our customers with future product solutions designed for sustainability.
- Incorporating sustainability performance in sourcing decision criteria.