Purchasing long-lasting equipment such as boilers and insulation is usually done infrequently. It’s therefore unlikely that expertise are developed alongside an in-depth knowledge of suppliers, product specifications and pricing.
This means many businesses may miss out on financial and environmental benefits. This is particularly true in smaller businesses where the pressures of day-to-day operations mean there is very little time to undertake improvement projects. For other businesses, lack of time and expertise can lead to purchases going ahead without the right amount of planning – delivering disappointing results.
Making the right choices when buying new resource efficiency equipment not only ensures that you enjoy maximum benefits from the project, but it also helps bolster management support for future projects.
Different purchasing decisions will, of course, carry different risks. Buying energy efficient lighting for a storage area has less risk than investing in a new heating, ventilation and airconditioning (HVAC) system. However, the purchase process is the same, the only difference being the time and effort you feel the tasks warrants.
The process we recommend follows four key steps:
1) Understand your requirements.
2) Find and short-list suitable suppliers.
3) Review estimates and supplier capabilities.
4) Select the most suitable supplier
While most resource efficiency products are likely to be a one-off purchase that will last many years, they should still be part of an overall sustainable procurement system in your organisation.
Sustainable procurement is about:
Sustainable products and services are those that: