Doing business with Black- and other diverse-owned suppliers helps keep BMS on the cutting edge of innovative products and service that benefit patients, while helping the businesses thrive in ways that create jobs and other positive economic impacts, including in diverse communities hard-hit by systemic injustices being spotlighted now.
But achieving supplier diversity in a substantive way doesn’t just happen on its own or quickly. The effort must be intentional, underpinned by a sufficiently resourced infrastructure, have senior-level support from across an organization and a dedicated leader to run it. BMS has all that and more, and the supplier diversity program that drives it is as critical to the company’s future as it has been to its past.
“Our supplier diversity program has not only made BMS better able to compete in the marketplace and discover, develop and deliver breakthrough therapies for patients in the U.S. and around the globe, it has made us a more inclusive and open-minded company and a more attractive place for the best and brightest to build their careers,” says Rondu Vincent, executive director, Global Supplier Diversity & Sustainability at BMS.
At its core, “supplier diversity is about economic parity, economic equilibrium, job creation and lifting up people and the communities they live in,” Vincent says. “Our partnership with diverse suppliers can have an ongoing and meaningful ripple effect far beyond our organization and across communities, over time and in support of a much greater good.”
Yet while that good extends beyond BMS’ walls, it permeates within them too, enabling the company to take advantage of the richness of diversity that brings a range of ideas and perspectives, says Vincent. Diverse-owned businesses are often “more nimble, more cost-effective and willing to ideate and collaborate” regardless of their size, he says. This can drive innovation faster—for the suppliers and BMS—creating meaningful change that ultimately benefits the patients and others the company serves.