The Access Pledge

Working together with procurement professionals from leading large businesses, Business in the Community has developed The Access Pledge. By taking The Access Pledge, and working to make their business fair, transparent and open, large businesses are allowing SMEs to compete for their business on a level playing field.

Workers in high visibility vests

We are asking large businesses to take The Access Pledge.

I pledge to make my company's business, for all suppliers:

  • Fair and simple

  • Transparent and on a level playing field

  • Open, with minimal barriers

By taking this pledge, large businesses will enable:

  • access for SMEs to opportunities in large businesses through fair, transparent and open procurement

  • access for large businesses to the growth and innovation within SMEs

  • access for communities to the enhanced abilities of SMEs to generate local jobs 

Here are some examples of how large businesses could fulfil The Access Pledge.  These examples are meant to inspire; large businesses are not expected to follow every one.

  Finding Choosing Managing
Is it fair?
  • Make sure SMEs have the same ability to find opportunities as other suppliers (improve access to portals/platforms)

  • Make requirements for insurance and non-critical certifications relative to the size and risk of the contract

  • Make requirements for management reporting relative to the size and risk of the contract

Is it transparent?
  • Develop a one-page description of how you choose and find suppliers (including SMEs)

  • Accept standard supplier information prepared for other contracts

  • Allow suppliers to disengage early if they're not right for the contract

  • Sign up to the Prompt Payment Code, being transparent about your payment processes

Is it open?

  • Get feedback from SMEs trying to supply you

  • Measure impact, including reduction in barriers faced by SMEs

  • Get feedback from SMEs going through the selection process

  • Consider impact, including jobs that can be created through the contract

  • Get feedback from SMEs on doing business with you

  • Measure impact, including delivery / performance of SMEs, jobs created through contracts won

How do I pledge?
The CEO or equivalent position must confirm the Access Pledge on behalf of your organisation. 
Complete a short form to take The Access Pledge.

Who has already pledged? 
See a list of organisations that have taken the Access Pledge.

What will happen when I pledge?
Once you have taken the Pledge, we will first verify that you have the authority to take the pledge on behalf of your organisation.  When we have verified this, we will publish your organisation on our website in a list of organisations that have taken the Pledge, and we will contact you for examples of how you have made your business fair, transparent and open.
 
How could I fulfil the pledge?
See examples of how organisations are making their business fair, transparent and open.

 

How do I pass on our best practice?
When you have taken the Pledge, we will be in touch to find out your own examples.

Do I have to update?
We will ask you to renew your Pledge on an annual basis.

I have questions.  Who should I contact?
Contact Enterprise@bitc.org.uk if you have any further questions about the Access Pledge.