IBM supply chain responsibility

Enhance social and environmental responsibility and risk planning

Read the 2023 IBM Impact Report
Managing a supply chain with both business goals and positive social impact in mind

From its inception over a century ago, IBM® has been based on a set of fundamental values that shape and define our company and permeate all our relationships—between our company's people and our shareholders, our clients, and the communities— where we operate and among our network of suppliers. IBM is committed to doing business with environmentally and socially responsible suppliers.

We have a responsibility to hold ourselves and our suppliers to high standards of behavior. This includes complying with all applicable laws and regulations, but it goes beyond that. It entails a strong commitment to work with suppliers to encourage sound practices including social and environmental responsibility, ethics, and risk planning. We collaborate to advance these values in our industry, with our suppliers and to build tools for more transparency in supply chains worldwide.

Supply chain social responsibility

In the modern global market, the electronics sector faces growing scrutiny for supply chain social responsibility standards, with public reporting, legislation and concerns about issues like conflict minerals, forced labor, and human trafficking on the rise. IBM uses the Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) Code of Conduct for its internal operations and global supply base. This code sets minimum social responsibility standards for suppliers, as enforced by IBM. Non-compliant suppliers will face consequences such as a reduction or termination of their business contract.

Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) Code of Conduct

In today’s global marketplace, business collaboration and social responsibility are essential. IBM and more than 230 electronics, retail, auto, social media, and toy companies endorse the Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) Code of Conduct, which sets standards across several areas of social responsibility. The RBA is updated every three years to remain relevant and address dynamic challenges. Version 8.0 of the RBA Code of Conduct went into effect on 1 January 2024. IBM requires suppliers to review the changes and adopt them. All RBA audits since 1 January 2021 follow Code V8.0. You can find multiple language translations of Code V8.0 on the RBA website  (link resides outside of ibm.com).

View RBA Code V8.0
Supply chain social responsibility program and audit process

Gain a deeper understanding of IBM’s supply chain social responsibility program and supplier compliance audits. This information is intended to help suppliers and to provide the means for successful code compliance demonstration.

Supply chain social responsibility program

Explore how IBM sets up requirements and assesses compliance, collaborates with industry groups to drive improvement, and expands the diversity of our supply chain.

IBM’s history in responsible and ethical supply chain
In 2004, IBM and 11 other companies established the Electronics Industry Code of Conduct (EICC), addressing issues such as labor, health, safety, environment, ethics, management, conflict minerals and human trafficking within the sector. IBM was honored with the EICC Founders Award, through the robust leadership of John M. Gabriel, who remains actively involved as EICC RBA’s chair emeritus.