Fair and consistent – One of our business principles is to deal with suppliers in an open and honest way. We require all of our suppliers to sign our standard terms and conditions in advance of commencing trade, and we have signed up to the Prompt Payment Code. The number of days’ purchases outstanding for payment at 30 June 2018 was 31 days (2017: 38 days).
Human rights – Effective management of human rights throughout our supply chain is built into our product procurement procedures. Suppliers of our own branded products are asked to sign our Code of Conduct, based on the Ethical Trading Initiative (‘ETI’) base code, with a strengthened section on slavery. This requires that suppliers provide a clean and safe work environment, workers must be treated with respect and earn a reasonable wage, and relevant local laws and regulations must be met. Our policy is available on our Group Policies.
All suppliers of Dunelm branded products must have a satisfactory audit in place which is no more than two years old, and a valid building and fire safety certificate. During 2017/18 we rolled this requirement out to the suppliers of our Worldstores, Kiddicare and Achica branded products. Supplier branded products are not subject to audits but suppliers sign our Code of Conduct (or equivalent) and an assessment is made of their standards and capability.
Our in-house technology team has extensive experience of working with factories to improve quality and ethical standards. Our Far East sourcing partners monitor standards and work to improve them on our behalf. Where non-compliance is discovered we work with a supplier to help them achieve compliance, usually within six months. Critical non-conformances such as use of child labour, working against choice/slavery or absence of valid Building or Fire Certificates are escalated immediately, and supplies cease until the issue has been resolved. Ultimately, if progress is inadequate, we will cease to trade with the supplier.
Modern slavery – In 2016 we assessed our own facilities and supply base (products and services) for modern slavery risk and have required the major providers to sign our Code of Conduct. Our audits of suppliers of our Dunelm branded products also covers modern slavery. Our statement made pursuant to the Modern Slavery Act 2015, which contains further information, is available on our Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement.
Provenance – We are raising the provenance requirements for our products, with particular emphasis on timber sourcing, cotton, animal welfare and feathers and down. This is to ensure that we meet relevant regulatory, social, environmental and best practice requirements. Our policies in this area are available on our Group Policies. We are also reviewing our use of single use plastics in product packaging and in our Pausa coffee shops, and are looking for suitable alternatives which will allow us to remove them completely or move to a more environmentally friendly material.