Marriott International to Strengthen its Chain of Sustainability

October 1, 2012 in Our View, Strategy

MindClick SGM announced last week that Marriott International will spend 75 percent of its 2013 furniture, fixtures and equipment (FF&E) budget with suppliers who are part of the MindClick Hospitality Sustainability Performance Index (HSP Index). The HSP Index measures suppliers’ corporate social responsibility, environmental operations, and product sustainability efforts.

A survey conducted in January 2012 by MindClick SGM found that two out of three consumers believe hotels need to be more mindful of their impact on people, their communities and the planet. Over 90 percent of respondents identified one or more products they believe help hotels provide rooms that are healthier (i.e., reduce allergies, minimize toxins, improve indoor air quality) and better for the planet (i.e., lower energy use, conserve water, reduce waste). However, according to a MindClick survey released last year, only two percent of corporate travel executives would include Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification in their definition of hotel sustainability.

In 2011, Marriott became a founding member, and the first lodging brand member, of the Hospitality Sustainable Purchasing Consortium (HSPC), an industry leadership group comprised of brands, suppliers, architecture firms, sustainability experts and purchasing firms. Under the guidance of MindClick, and in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council, this working group has created an industry-wide supplier sustainability performance scorecard, the HSP Index. The Index measures and reports on suppliers of global furniture, fixtures and equipment (FF&E). Designed to align with the sustainability needs of the hospitality industry, the HSP Index is currently being piloted and launched with additional suppliers, hotel brands and franchisees and owners. By 2013, Marriott expects that this new scorecard will have been used to assess the sustainability scores for 75 percent of our direct spend with FF&E suppliers.

“The Index provides brands, designers, purchasers and owners with the knowledge and tools to design and furnish hotels more sustainably,” said JoAnna Abrams, CEO of MindClick SGM. “MindClick’s HSP Index benefits suppliers by validating their investments in sustainability, eliminating greenwashing and providing a roadmap to engage in efforts that matter most to the industry”, she added.

In the future, HSPC will facilitate greening the furniture, fixture and equipment supply chains for hotels by:

  • collaborating to establish consistent measures of sustainable purchasing performance for brands, owners and manufacturers;
  •   establishing key performance indicators that enhance the environmental and social impact of the hotel industry while continuing to provide the highest levels of quality and service for hotel guests;
  •  providing feedback to suppliers once they have submitted their information via a scoring system;
  •  publishing an online repository of supplier sustainability performance information for purchasing decision makers to use in the procurement process.

“Utilising the MindClick Index to make sustainable furniture, fixture and equipment purchasing decisions will help us choose suppliers who will improve our hotels’ sustainability, reduce costs and enhance the guest experience,” said Dave Lippert, Marriott vice president of A&C procurement. “Ultimately, improving our environmental impact extends beyond our hotels and into our global supply chain.”

Recently Ceres launched a free global online supply chain sustainability tool, namely The Supplier Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ): Building the Foundation for Sustainable Supply Chains. Though designed for the industrial goods sector, this tool can be useful for all companies seeking to strengthen supply chain engagement, according to Ceres, who consulted for this project many existing sustainability initiatives including the Electronic Industry Citizen Coalition, the Global Social Compliance Program or Sedex. It’s intended to be the first step in developing dialogue between a company and its suppliers in identifying, assessing, managing and disclosing supply chain sustainability risks. In the same time, following the indicators of SAQ, the companies can save money and become more productive.

About MindClick SGM

MindClick SGM, a leading sustainability research and consulting firm, provides clients with performance measurement tools to develop, implement, improve and promote product and company sustainability. Serving clients ranging from global Fortune 1000 companies in consumer products, automotive and hospitality from family owned building products suppliers to government municipalities, MindClick drives growth through sustainability. Headquartered in Los Angeles with offices in San Francisco and Seattle, MindClick combines a decade of experience in sustainability with 20+ years of research, product development and marketing expertise. The result is sustainability performance rating services that provide executive decision makers with the knowledge to maximize business success.

About the HSP Index

MindClick’s HSP Index rates supplier performance based on leading, globally accepted sustainability standards and practices adapted for the hotel industry. The HSP Index provides purchasing decision makers with the tools to compare the sustainability performance of suppliers and their products. Developed with input from Hospitality Sustainable Purchasing Consortium members, the HSP Index aligns the efforts of suppliers with the needs of hoteliers to sustainably furnish and supply hotels while meeting existing design, quality, service and cost needs. MindClick’s HSP Index measures supplier performance in corporate social responsibility, environmental operations and product sustainability.

About Marriott

Marriott International Inc. is a leading lodging company based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA with more than 3,500 properties in 74 countries and territories and reported revenues of over $12 billion in fiscal year 2011. The company operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts under 17 brands, including Marriott Hotels & Resorts, The Ritz-Carlton, JW Marriott, Bulgari, EDITION, Renaissance, Autograph Collection, AC Hotels by Marriott, Courtyard, Fairfield Inn & Suites, SpringHill Suites, Residence Inn, TownePlace Suites, Marriott Executive Apartments, Marriott Vacation Club, Grand Residences by Marriott, and The Ritz-Carlton Destination Club. There are approximately 300,000 employees at headquarters, managed and franchised properties. Marriott is consistently recognized as a top employer and for its superior business operations, which it conducts based on five core values: put people first, pursue excellence, embrace change, act with integrity, and serve our world.

Marriott in Romania

Though the management contract with Marriott International Inc was signed by Grand SRL in 1996, Marriott operates in Romania since 2001, when its brand name was given to the opening of the fourth five star hotel in the capital city, Bucharest Marriott Grand Hotel, after an investment of about $150 million. Today, The Grand is the biggest luxury multi-function complex in Romania, with an area 85.000 Sq m that hosts besides the 402 rooms, 3 special restaurants, conference halls, the World Class Health Academy and 511 parking places.

This year, through another partnership, with Gica Popescu Hotels, the company owned by the ex-footballer, Marriott will bring also the brand Courtyard to Romania. The future facility will operate under the name Courtyard Marriott Bucharest Hotel and is expected to open at the beginning of 2014.