How we Buy
KPMG recognises that the application of sound procurement practice (including the development and management of supplier relationships) can deliver significant strategic, financial and operational advantage to KPMG and its clients, and can substantially reduce commercial and operational risk. As such, it is KPMG's stated objective to purchase goods and services from the supplier, contractor or provider that offers the firm the best value for money whilst minimising commercial risk.
Best value for KPMG comprises:
- Goods / services that are fit for purpose and delivered in a timely and professional manner.
- Goods / services that represent the best possible purchase price in total cost terms over the lifetime of the goods / services in question.
- Compliance with applicable UK and European law and regulations and compliance with the firm's demanding ethical, social and environmental standards.
To achieve best value the firm works closely with its key suppliers to create relationships of mutual trust and respect for the combined benefit of our respective organisations.
Our procurement policy requires that the firm's central procurement department is actively involved in all orders or contracts:
- with a total aggregated value in excess of £100,000; and/or
- presenting a significant business, financial, legal, professional or reputational risk; and/or
- involving potential outsourcing or off-shoring.
Our Procurement Department
The firm's central Procurement Department is responsible for providing best practice procurement advice and support to all parts of the firm with key procurement decisions taken jointly between the Procurement Department and the business area concerned. The Department reports through to Mike Blake, Chief Financial Officer and Head of Infrastructure.
- Ethics - KPMG insists on the highest ethical standards from both its suppliers and staff and conducts its procurement activities in an open and transparent manner to ensure the highest standards of integrity and to avoid any conduct capable of misinterpretation. Any improper approaches from suppliers are reported internally.
- Confidentiality - KPMG treats all supplier information including pricing and other commercial terms as strictly confidential.
- Gifts and hospitality - KPMG personnel are instructed to refuse all offers of gifts, money and/or hospitality from suppliers other than minor gifts of low intrinsic value such as pens, diaries etc. Suppliers are therefore encouraged not to offer such gifts, hospitality or entertainment to KPMG staff and should note that gifts of any real worth will be politely returned.
Corporate Social Responsibility
KPMG's procurement activities are aligned to the firm's Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policies and programme, ensuring, where possible, that the firm:
- minimises its consumption of goods and services (including paper, energy etc.) ;
- purchases from sustainable sources;
- selects suppliers that have a compatible approach to Corporate Social Responsibility; and
- takes relevant environmental factors into account when assessing alternative supplier proposals.
Also see our Corporate Social Responsibility section.
Suppliers who are Clients of KPMG
Many suppliers of goods and services that the firm requires on an ongoing basis are themselves clients of KPMG. Whilst the firm may purchase goods and services from its clients, it is required to apply strict rules regarding integrity and objectivity to ensure that no undue influence is exerted favouring the award of any order or contract to an audit client. Conversely, on those occasions when an audit client does offer best value for money, the firm is required to ensure that the award of an order or contract does not lead to a potential, perceived or actual bias, conflict of interest or influence upon the objectivity and integrity of KPMG's relationship with the audit client in question.
To this end, the Procurement Department is required to demonstrate that all orders and/or contracts awarded to audit clients of the firm are:
- On an arm's length basis (i.e., reached by means of a transparent and auditable process in line with good commercial practice)
- Undertaken in the normal course of business (i.e., that the goods/services offered are part of the suppliers normal offering and are genuinely required by KPMG for its business activities), and
- Not material to either party.
In summary therefore, whilst the firm's clients may be given the opportunity to bid for relevant orders and contracts, the firm does not permit purchasing and contracting decisions to be influenced by a desire to create, protect or enhance a client relationship, nor permit a supplier relationship to be used as a basis for soliciting business.