Procurement Standards

BS 8903

Action Sustainability authored the British Standard on sustainable procurement BS 8903: Principles and Framework for Procuring Sustainability was launched in summer 2010. BS 8903 provides guidance to any size and type of organisation on adopting and embedding sustainable procurement principles and practices. It covers all stages of the procurement process and is applicable across industry, public, private and third sector organisations. Action Sustainability is pleased to offer an evaluation of your organisation's competence to fulfil the requirements of this standard.  As the instigators and authors of the standard, we are uniquely placed to provide a robust and independent evaluation of your organisation just email or call the team on 020 7697 1963 

ISO 20400 – the new standard for sustainable procurement

The new international standard for sustainable procurement practice will be published in late 2016 following a painstaking process starting in 2013 and involving a committee of over 40 nations from as far apart as Europe, Scandinavia, USA, Canada, Central and South America, Australia, Japan, China, Africa and many more. Our director, Shaun McCarthy OBE has been part of the committee since the start and has been highly influential in shaping the structure and content of the document.

Technically this is a guidance standard, not a requirements standard so it is not certifiable but it is possible to commission an evaluation by an independent expert to understand how closely you comply with the standard and to take on board recommendations to move towards full compliance over time.

The structure of the standard closely follows BS 8903;

·         Fundamentals – the key drivers and principles of sustainable procurement

·         Policy and strategy – key issues to consider in developing a policy and strategy

·         Organising the procurement function – creating the organisational conditions necessary to procure sustainably and setting priorities

·         Procurement process – how to procure differently  

The standard incorporates the most recent developments in sustainability thinking including the UN Guiding Principles on Human Rights and Business and ISO 26000. It is designed for all organisations, public and private, of all sizes. It will be published in late 2016.


Who we work with

  • British Land
  • FMC
  • Network Rail
  • Skanska