Tips and Strategies From Both Sides of the Supplier Diversity Aisle

On building a Tier 1 Supplier Diversity Program and on being a Tier 1 Supplier


Associate VP, Strategic Sourcing & Procurement – North America

At BGIS, we believe that the key success factor for a Supplier Diversity program is executive leadership commitment and support. Organizations have different approaches to procurement and supplier engagement and it’s important that the supplier diversity objectives are cascaded to the people who are conducting the procurement. It’s also important that these purchasers are provided with the tools and guidance by a centralized lead to help them engage with diverse suppliers and promote the program across the organization.

Tracking, reporting on progress and leader accountability are also key success factors. When progress is reported in executive or client dashboards it provides visibility. Successes provide encouragement; targets and visibility provide incentive for friendly competition and success.

Networking and partnering with certifying councils open the door to suppliers, other corporates, webinars, and events that are designed to provide guidance. It’s important to participate in events and maintain and build those relationships.


Head of Procurement, Outsourcing & Vendor Management
Home Trust

Home Trust is a proud member of and ally to WBE Canada. In line with our own Corporate Supplier Diversity Program, Home Trust supports WBE Canada’s efforts in creating opportunities for Canadian women-owned businesses. If you are interested in implementing a Supplier Diversity program, keep reading our Dos and Don’ts below:


  • Understand your vendors. Are any already certified? Are any qualified for certification? WBE Canada can help you with this analysis
  • Educate your business unit leaders on the benefits of a supplier diversity program
  • Reach out to WBE Canada for a list of possible vendors that you can include in your RFX’s
  • Review your underperforming vendors and check with WBE Canada for a list of certified suppliers to consider By replacing underperforming vendors with those that are WBE certified, you will gain business support for your Supplier Diversity Program.


  • Don’t try to boil the ocean. Be strategic about what changes you can make with the least disruption and the most impact to your business.
  • Don’t impose Supplier Diversity to your business units. Instead get their buy-in by demonstrating the value of such a program.
  • Don’t miss out on WBE opportunities to connect with other Corporate Sponsors. These events are great for networking, sharing ideas and best practices
  • Don’t ignore calls for match-making events. This is a great way to meet diverse suppliers that you normally would not have a chance to meet, and that meeting could lead to a new partnership


President & CEO
BG Communications International Inc.

BG Communications has spent the last 25+ years dedicating ourselves to developing and implementing processes that allow us to deliver high-quality products and offer exceptional service. Here are some tips to excel as a Tier 1 company:

  • Develop an effective supplier management system. Establish the legal and functional requirements that suppliers must respect to meet and surpass your customers’ needs and provide exceptional quality and customer service. A supply management system is dynamic, so establish performance metrics to help you spot any problems early on and take corrective actions when needed. Having a close relationship with our suppliers has been vital to our growth.
  • Provide outstanding after-sales service. The sales process does not end with the delivery of your product or service. In fact, after-sales service is a vital part of the overall customer journey and just as important as the services provided at the onset of a project. Providing an exceptional after sales service has allowed us to solidify our reputation, ensure customer loyalty, generate new referrals and access new markets.
  • Continuously improve and update. In today’s competitive landscape, the status quo is not an option. Keeping up with the latest technological advances and industry trends will not only help you better serve your existing client base, but will also support your continued growth. Do your research, perform thorough analyses, and don’t be afraid of change. Embracing new technologies and updating our processes has allowed us to truly flourish.
  • Always go the extra mile. The strongest and longest-lasting relationships are built on trust. Promoting transparently, being flexible, reacting quickly to unforeseen events, and adapting to your customer’s individual and changing needs will leave a lasting impression. We always strive to provide our customers with personalized services and to make them feel secure in what we know is a mutually beneficial partnership.
  • Certify your quality. Obtaining recognized certifications that endorse the quality of your products, services or processes is a great way to stand out from the crowd. Certifications help establish a feeling of trust and respect with both current and potential customers. Obtaining various certifications has helped us build a solid reputation within the industry and has often been instrumental in securing bids with government and other agencies.