Born and raised in the U.S., with a degree in Business Management from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, Wendy Kent has 20 years’ experience sourcing and purchasing products in the Far East. She has lived and worked in Hong Kong and travelled extensively through the region developing relationships with factories and gaining an understanding of manufacturing processes across many different types of products.
She has successfully led Supply Chain and Account Management teams for the last 10 years including overseeing the Far East operations teams. As Chief Operating Officer at Matrix APA, Wendy has been instrumental in the implementation of strategic direction over the last 6 years.
This includes setting the procurement, quality management, CSR and sourcing processes and ensuring that these procedures continue to align with the company strategy as the company continues to grow and develop. Wendy believes in supporting the team to develop to their full potential whilst striving for excellence in achieving the key outlined objectives for Matrix APA.
Responsible business is imperative to my individual role and as Matrix APA sources products globally it is of great importance to our company that we set and maintain the standards for our sector. Businesses of all sizes need to take responsibility for the effects that our actions have on the entire supply chain. The factories that we work with are part of our family at Matrix APA and they should be treated like the rest of our colleagues.
A happy and skilled workforce equates to an efficient and more productive supplier. In my capacity as COO, I feel it is my responsibility to show leadership in this area and embed the importance of acting responsibly across all of the teams. Our CSR team spend their time listening, educating, and supporting the factory managers as well as production line workers to ensure that improvements are being made that can lead to increased productivity and profit. In turn, we also train everyone within the company so that the knowledge and benefits gained through these programmes can be shared with the wider audience which includes our stakeholders and clients.
Responsibility within the supply chain is becoming more important as retailers and brands are placing greater importance on their ethical strategies and there is a growing curiosity from consumers who want to know the origins of the products they are purchasing. It is crucial that the buying teams align with the CSR teams on this point so the two departments are working towards the same goal. The growing pressures that suppliers face to make better quality products for less expensive prices does not leave much room in the budget to implement social and ethical programmes. Raising awareness on this point has played a vital role in our achieving mutual success.
At Matrix APA, we are dedicated to striving for transparency in the supply chain. If we have clear sight of any issues it is much easier for us to create action plans to achieve improvements. We have won 5 prestigious awards for our CSR work this year. This accomplishment enables us to spread our message to the wider community and allows us to show other companies how to get involved. We are extremely proud to be recognised as a responsible business by our peers and will continue to set the standards for the sectors that we work within.
Why Wendy has been nominated
"Wendy, our COO at Matrix APA, is responsible for the smooth running of the supply chain; a role she excels at. After working with Wendy for over 5 years, it’s clear that her knowledge, passion and integrity make her the best person to drive the importance of responsible business through our whole supply chain." - Charlie Bradshaw, CEO & Founder