Being a responsible organisation | Wates

By procuring with purpose we deliver wider impact, utilising the power of procurement spend and supply chain influence to reinforce our values.

With growing momentum to ensure that diverse and smaller organisations are included within the delivery of public sector contracts, our support for the SE sector is more relevant than ever, utilising the expertise of supply chain partners to build community resilience simply through the procurement choices we make as a business.

We are committed to investing in our supply chain, through opportunities to win new business and access to free training through the Supply Chain Sustainability School.

Supporting social enterprises

In 2015, we were the first within our industry to set a long-term goal to embed social enterprises (SEs) within our supply chain, to raise the profile of their impact and to spend at least £20m with SEs by 2020.

To do this we targeted all our projects to trade with at least one social enterprise, set annual spend goals and have since established a network of about 50 SE champions across the business.

We achieved the £20m spend goal by November 2019.

Wates spends £20 million on Social Enterprises (SEs)

Supply Chain Sustainability School

The Supply Chain Sustainability School (SCSS) is a free learning portal where our staff and supply chain can access training in five different areas: Sustainability; Offsite; BIM; Lean and Management.

SCSS is an award-winning industry wide collaboration led by their partners and members whose vision for the school is to be a world class collaboration to enable a sustainable built environment.

It offers a wide range of free events, workshops and networking opportunities hosted throughout the UK for Wates and their supply chain, as well as joint events with other partners.

Currently 48% of our top tier supply chain are registered with SCSS

Meet the buyer events

Wates hosts and attends many Meet the Buyer events, both independently and as part of our partnership with Constructionline.

These provide opportunities for us to meet local supply chains, including micro, small, medium and social enterprises, to network and discuss collaboration and work opportunities.

Follow us on social media for upcoming events


Modern slavery and human trafficking

The Wates Group is proud of the ethical standards that we have embedded into our business over many years, and we believe that these standards are consistent with the underlying principles of the Modern Slavery Act 2015.

Slavery and the trafficking of people have no place in the modern world. Wates has a zero-tolerance approach to slavery and human trafficking and we expect our supply chains to take the same stance. We are committed to developing, implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to ensure that we address the threat of modern slavery within our business and in all of our business relationships, including in our supply chains.

Work begins on £9.4m West Street development

Living wage

The real Living Wage, advocated by the Living Wage Foundation, is a voluntary and independently-set pay rate that reflects the true cost of living. However, it is not yet routinely paid across the built environment sector. Low pay risks trapping people in working poverty, creating a social cost through a reliance on top up benefits.

We have set out a vision to champion the real Living Wage and lead the sector in striving for fairer payment by Wates Group achieving Recognised Service Provider status (RSP).


RSP accreditation, aligned to the Living Wage Foundation, commits signatories to pay Living Wage to those working in its own premises and to influencing clients to choose to pay Living Wage on their contracts (and cascading that through the associated supply chain where it is implemented), while respecting their ultimate decision (which may be to pay minimum wage).

Wates Group’s commitment:

  • Roll out RSP accreditation across the Group
  • Raise awareness of Living Wage
  • Use our influence to promote Living Wage take up among clients.

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