TfS Supplier Evaluation

Suppliers are evaluated by two methods:

  1. Assessments based on a questionnaire issued by EcoVadis, an independent external service provider
  2. Audits carried out by a TfS-certified auditing company

Assessments: Based on the principles of the UN’s Global Compact and the Responsible Care® initiative, these online questionnaires are adapted to the size, country of origin and sector of the supplier in question. The assessments examine 21 criteria relating to the environment, social responsibility, ethics and the supply chain. EcoVadis specialists analyze the information provided by the suppliers, add their own research findings and summarize the results in the form of a scorecard – which is linked to a corrective action plan. The assessments evaluate the sustainability performance of suppliers on a corporate level.

Audits: External auditors visit individual supplier sites and carry out on-site inspections. The TfS initiative regularly reviews auditor qualifications via a qualification training course and a corresponding test. As a key part of the audits, employees are asked questions to determine whether the information provided by management is implemented in the workforce. The audits cover 33 criteria relating to management, the environment, health & safety, labor law, human rights, and governance.

The auditors summarize their findings in a detailed report, which also contains a corrective action plan. Depending on the results, assessments and audits are valid for a period of one to three years.

As a general principle, all key suppliers must have a TfS assessment. Individual audits are performed in addition to the assessments – particularly when the supplier’s business involves specific risks, and WACKER has defined risk regions and risk industries to this end. Also, suppliers with below-average EcoVadis assessment scores are singled out for audits. Our medium-term goal is for all of our key suppliers to receive at least 45 of 100 theoretically possible points on their assessments. In our audits, we aim for no serious deviations from target specifications (critical or major findings) among our suppliers.

Over 200 WACKER suppliers participated in TfS assessments in 2017 and 2018, so that approx. 800 suppliers had valid TfS assessments by the end of 2018.

TfS audits were intensified a great deal – WACKER conducted a total of over 50 TfS audits during the reporting period, raising the overall number of audited suppliers to 75.

WACKER participated in setting up the TfS Supplier Academy. We supplement this online supplier training program with regional classroom-based training opportunities on a regular basis. During the reporting period, these included events in the US and China.

When we joined TfS, we trained all of our purchasers in sustainability topics for the first time. Since then, the training has become an integral part of our orientation program for new purchasers.