July 25, 2018
We spent 5 minutes with Scott Buckland, one of the speakers at this year’s Social Enterprise Conference, to learn a little bit more about his background and insight into social enterprise and social procurement.
Who is Scott Buckland, General Manager – Knoxbrooke Enterprises
Three years ago Scott joined Knoxbrooke and heads up the social enterprise group – Knoxbrooke Enterprises – which includes Yarra View Nursery – a large wholesale plant nursery, Knoxbrooke Outsource – packaging, assembly and warehousing services, YVN Horticulture Services – commercial garden maintenance and Home of Garden Lovers – a premium retail garden centre. All up Knoxbrooke Enterprises has 190 employees including 140 people living with a disability.
Scott has over 20 years commercial management experience gained across various industries including Horticulture, Apparel, Printing, Packaging and Construction and is passionate about improving the lives and opportunities for people with a disability. Scott holds a bachelor of commerce qualification and is a fellow of the CPA. He also has a forklift license and a white card – just in case!
MH: Scott, what are the greatest challenges facing the growth of social procurement in Australia?
SB: The ability for social enterprises to scale up quickly to meet the fast growing core needs for commercial projects, especially in Victoria with the state government implementing its Social Procurement Strategy. For those that are capable, access to capital to be able to expand will be the major challenge.
MH: What are the greatest opportunities for social procurement in Australia?
SB: Community and government attitudes towards the importance of social procurement is definitely changing and quickly. This is creating opportunities in many new markets for social enterprises. Our challenge is to be able to respond to ensure we take advantage of the opportunities.
MH: What inspires you the most about social procurement?
SB: The ability to make real and long term change to peoples lives.
MH: Why are you participating in the Social Enterprise Conference 2018?
SB: To learn from others on their successes and failures and be inspired to do more.