Select a suitable product group
If you are about to implement circular procurement, it is important to be aware of the characteristics of the various product groups. Some products groups are better suited to achieve circular ambitions than others. Starting point is the procurement of a physical products (or the procurement of maintenance for such a product). For product groups that do not involve the procurement of physical products – such as communication or consultancy services – it is not possible to apply the principles underlying a circular economy.
- Determine in advance whether or not a product group is suitable for circular procurement: physical products are especially suited in this respect. For the procurement of labour (for example, consultancy services) this is harder to achieve.
- Examine your procurement power compared to the size of the market: select a product in a market where you preferably buy directly from the manufacturer, enabling you to use your ambitions as leverage, for instance to influence the design.
- For your first project, choose a product group that does not present to many risks for the internal organisation: experimenting produces the best results if there is scope for learning.
- For your first project, select a product group from a market that is relatively mature, to ensure that the market can easily deliver on the ambitions of your first circular procurement process.
The eBook Circular Procurement in 8 steps (pp.51-54) details how to select a suitable product group for your first circular procurement pilot.
This publication provides practical guidelines for the selection of promising product groups, relevant circular aspects per product group and potential criteria.