Richard Reporting – how sustainable is ABN AMRO’s purchasing policy?

In Richard Reporting, Richard Kooloos, Head of Sustainable Banking, drops in on colleagues to talk to them about how they personally are making sustainability a reality. This time, he’s speaking to Marjolein Goense, Chief Procurement Officer, to learn more about the bank’s purchasing policy.

Owing to its size, ABN AMRO is a major purchaser of all types of products and services, ranging from office supplies and coffee to lighting, and from office space and transport to automation. Not to mention all sorts of consultancy services in areas like secondment, marketing and training. Indeed, we are one of the biggest purchasers of products and services in the Netherlands. 

When it comes to procurement at the bank, it’s about more than the bottom line. Sustainability and innovation are also criteria in selecting suppliers. When sourcing a supplier of laptops, for instance, we feel it’s important that these computers can be reused – in schools, for example – once it no longer needs them.

Pilot project

Yet another example is the bank’s partnership with one particular player in the area of electric car sharing. A pilot project we recently launched is allowing us to expand the scheme and take on other projects. In this way, we can use our purchasing power to give a boost to a specific market.

Ongoing reviews

Selection criteria don’t just play a role when we purchase a product or enter into a collaboration – the sustainability of our existing suppliers is continuously under review, too. In addition, we encourage our suppliers to carry out ongoing self-assessments and to continue to monitor the total value of their service or product, not just its price in euros.

Striking a balance

Watch a video of the discussion between Richard Kooloos and Marjolein Goense, in which Marjolein talks about the dilemmas that play a role every day in striking a balance between sustainable choices and managing costs.