Supply chain

As a purpose-led business we foster strong relationships with all our key stakeholders, including our supply chain. By 2022, our ambition is to quantify the impact of all supplier activities through a supplier engagement framework.

NatWest Group Supplier Charter

A key milestone towards our ambition was the launch of the NatWest Group Supplier Charter in September 2020 (replacing our supplier code of conduct). The charter sets out our aims and expectations in the areas of ethical  business conduct, human rights, environmental sustainability, diversity and inclusion, the Living Wage and prompt payment. It details what we expect from our suppliers, but also outlines our own commitments in these key areas and the outcomes we aim to achieve by working together.

Read our NatWest Group Supplier Charter (PDF 176KB)



NatWest Group Supplier Charter 2021 (PDF 94KB)

Our collaboration with EcoVadis

Central to the aims of charter, we partnered with EcoVadis – a leading organisation providing independent, third-party evidence-based assessments of sustainability performance. EcoVadis are helping us to understand and measure our own performance and that of our suppliers against the charter, enabling us to identify social, environmental and ethical improvements. NatWest Group has made significant progress in the first year of working with EcoVadis, with 834 suppliers invited to take part in assessment and 480 rated, representing 88% of its in scope 3rd party spend being independently assessed against ESG credentials.

EcoVadis also monitors specialist media (including, but not limited to trade unions, sustainability networks, NGOs, labour watch, local media) to gather news and insights relevant to the assessed entity and sustainability. This helps to ensure that the ultimate rating does not solely rely on supplier submitted documentation.

EcoVadis also conducted a sustainability assessment of NatWest Group, scoring 62% which is significantly higher than the global EcoVadis average of 49% for the financial services sector.  This ranks NatWest Group in the 86th percentile for financial services. 

For more details on the EcoVadis Assessment criteria, please see the ‘Engaging our Suppliers’ section of the 2021 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Supplement (PDF 1.5MB)

Working together, towards common challenges

We collaborate with our suppliers to encourage and enable a diverse supply chain that is not only sustainable but also has a positive impact on the global community. This collaboration also supports the bank’s ambition to halve emissions across our operational value chain by 2030. Below are some examples of how we expect this to happen:

  • We expect our suppliers to implement the standards of the charter with their own suppliers.
  • The charter (and sustainability) is covered in our tender process, and is a standing agenda point of supplier review meetings conducted as part of ongoing contract management. These meetings are conducted monthly, quarterly or annually dependant on the supplier’s tier classification. They enable us to review supplier performance to ensure compliance with their contract and service-level agreements.
  • Supply chain managers are continually trained internally on onboarding and performance management of suppliers, as well as on key ESG topics, such as climate, diversity and inclusion and sustainable procurement to equip them with the knowledge and skills to drive forward supplier discussions and activity.
  • Embedding EcoVadis into performance objectives of procurement.

Continuing to Support our Suppliers – Prompt Payment

Throughout the pandemic we have maintained instant payment on goods and services receipt, which exceeds our commitment to the Government’s Prompt Payment code, which requires payment to be made in 60 days. We were awarded the Fast Payer Accreditation by Good Business Pays for 2021 and will continue to meet this standard as a bank that is committed to helping SMEs thrive and achieve their potential.

“We are very pleased to be working with NatWest Group, helping them collaborate with suppliers to drive sustainability performance. Significant progress has been made in just one year with 85% of in-scope spend already rated on sustainability topics across environmental, labour & human rights, ethics and sustainable procurement. Their commitment to embed this into business as usual is real with the EcoVadis rating integrated into contract clauses, internal procurement systems and processes and supplier relationship management. Natwest has been a first mover for the FS sector in the UK. We’re proud to be partnering with them to drive meaningful impact at scale”

- Nicola Sherwin, Vice President Customer Success - EcoVadis

Related content

Read more about how we seek to promote and respect human rights through the continued implementation of policies and practices covering our colleagues, customers and suppliers.

Read more about who our key stakeholders are, how we engaged with them, what we discussed and the outcomes.