April 26, 2018
Social Traders strongly endorses the Victorian Government Social Procurement Framework, released earlier today.
The Framework is the first whole-of-government commitment to social and sustainable procurement in Australia. It aims to increase job opportunities for disadvantaged people by encouraging Government agencies to dedicate a proportion of their significant spending power to buying from social enterprise.
In this regard, we are extremely pleased that the Framework closely aligns with Social Traders own strategic priorities.
Buying from social enterprise represents the greatest potential for social change in Australia and we congratulate the Victorian Government for taking a strong leadership role, and setting an example, towards realising this potential.
Additionally, it is critical to recognise that buying from social enterprise delivers more than goods and services – buyers are also purchasing additional social impact, at no extra cost. We congratulate the Government on its explicit intention to increase the value and efficiency of its significant procurement spend in this way.
With a collective spend of approximately $25 billion, the Victorian Government’s commitment to social and sustainable procurement reflects a growing national and international focus on the strategic use of procurement to drive social, economic, and environmental outcomes.
There is no doubt the potential is there. The contribution of social enterprise to Victoria’s economy is growing – 3,500 enterprises operating across the State, employing 60,000 people and generating revenue of $5.2 billion per year.
The new Framework coincides with the launch of Social Traders certification mark for social enterprise earlier this week.
This new certification offer is designed to provide social enterprises with brand credibility and enhance their prospects – through recognition – of winning commercial procurement contracts with business and Government buyers, ultimately helping them to achieve their social impact.
The launch of this whole of Government Social Procurement Framework along with our certification mark will give impetus to Social Traders work of creating employment through social enterprise by connecting certified suppliers to new procurement opportunities.
While Social Traders would like to see more prescriptive social procurement targets set over time, the Framework is a big step in the right direction. We look forward to supporting implementation of the Framework across Government Departments and agencies over coming months.
David Brookes, Managing Director