How Audi wants to check their suppliers for sustainability

Sustainable supply-chain at Audi e-tron

The Volkswagen subsidiary Audi has developed a rating to assess the sustainability of their suppliers. Due to this the carmaker wants to improve environmental and social standards. The program has been running since April 2017. Until now, Audi has monitored more than 600 suppliers at their production sites.

Next year the group will even go one step further: the rating will then decide which supplier gets the contract. This regulation will apply from fall 2019.

On-site inspection

Sustainability within the supply, especially for electric cars, is a highly frequent subject. In particular the raw materials for the production of batteries are associated with problems: Sometimes the workers in the mines work under inhumane conditions and prices are rising continuously due to high demand.

This may be one reason why the suppliers for the Audi e-tron are particularly scrutinized. The model will be presented already in September. It is Audi’s first all-electric car. In order to get a comprehensive picture of the supplier, Audi employees visit the suppliers on-site. During the inspection the supplier is checked in the basis of 12 sustainability criteria, like the compliance with health and safety regulations and the conservation of resources.

Extension to the whole VW-Group

If a potential supplier falls through the crack, he can improve his standards within a certain time period. In this way, the automotive group wants to support their suppliers in the area of sustainability. Until the end of 2018 around 400 further inspections should take place.

In addition to sustainability the carmaker wants to continue to pay attention to criteria like costs, quality, technological standards and innovative capability.

Starting in 2019, the inspection will be extended to the entire Volkswagen Group. Sustainability will then become a criterion for all brands when awarding contracts to suppliers.

Picture: Audi AG