Sustainability is gaining importance as an awarding criterion in the automotive industry/Six out of ten companies already assess the sustainability of their suppliers  – Supply chain study

October 28, 2021 | News Germany

For 89 percent of automotive companies, a sustainable supply chain only succeeds when ecological data is exchanged. But there is still a lack of adequate cooperation among many suppliers, as the current study “Green Transformation in the Automotive Industry” shows. Fewer than half of companies say suppliers actively support them in going green. The automotive experts at Staufen business consultancy surveyed almost 250 companies from the automotive industry in Germany for the study.

In the much needed switch to CO2-free production, the German automotive industry is increasingly relying on its suppliers: Four out of ten companies already take emissions from the upstream supply chain into account in their ecological impact. Last year, only one-third of companies did so. However, more than half of the companies are not prepared to accept higher costs for more environmentally sustainable procurement. “The situation is becoming even more acute for suppliers as a result of the green transition,” says Markus Riegger, who is responsible for the automotive sector on the board of Staufen AG. “Not only do they have to master transitioning from combustion to electric drives, but also increasingly digitized and networked manufacturing.” 

Considerable untapped potential in green collaboration with suppliers 

It is true that almost half of the companies in the automotive sector are pursuing joint packaging strategies with suppliers, and one third are working on flexible delivery intervals and joint recycling strategies. “But that cannot hide the fact that there is still much room for improvement when it comes to cooperation in terms of ecology,” says automotive expert Riegger. “Seven out of ten of the companies surveyed for the Staufen study currently consider environmental progress in the supply chain to be rather limited.” 

This is likely to change in the future: For 61 percent of automotive companies, the sustainability rating is an awarding criterion when selecting suppliers. By comparison, this figure was only 53 percent in the previous year’s study. 

Better managing complexity with more transparency and flexible processes 

The Green Maturity Index determined as part of the study also illustrates the extent to which the green transformation is already part of everyday life for OEMs and suppliers. The key figure – expressed as a decimal value between one and four – describes the maturity of the sustainability measures. While the index this year for OEMs is 2.79 (2020: 2.70), suppliers come in at 2.13 (2020: 2.02). “OEMs, system suppliers and subcontractors will only be able to close this gap by working together,” says Staufen Board Member Riegger with conviction. “The Green Transformation poses significant challenges for the industry and increases the complexity of collaboration. But with more transparency and flexible processes, it can be managed.” 

The study is available for download free of charge under the following link:

Congress and livestream: BestPractice Day 2021 on November 23 in Stuttgart 

From digitalization to decarbonization – companies are currently undergoing one of the largest transformations in economic history. What are the challenges that must be overcome, what opportunities must be seized? And what do high performers do differently in order to maintain their entrepreneurial balance? The BestPractice Day 2021 offers answers to these questions. The event will take place on November 23, 2021 in the FILDERHALLE in Stuttgart. At the same time, the congress will also be broadcast as a livestream. 

You can find all information about the congress at

About Staufen AG –

Inside every company there is an even better one. With this conviction, Staufen AG has been advising and qualifying companies and employees for more than 25 years. Markets are on the move – the competitive pressure is enormous. Staufen helps to quickly bring about the right changes, increase productivity, improve quality, and increase innovative strength. With the appropriate strategies and methods, the international transformation consultancy ensures rapid and measurable success. In order to leverage the potential available in every company, Staufen consultants establish a lively and sustainable culture of change together with executives and employees. The Academy of Staufen AG also offers certified, practice-oriented training courses. From the international locations, more than 320 employees serve customers all over the world. In 2021, Staufen AG was recognized by “brand eins” as “Best Consultants” for the seventh year in a row. According to the renowned industry study “Hidden Champions 2020,” the consulting firm is Germany’s best Lean Management consultancy and was honored several times with the “Best of Consulting” award by the “Wirtschaftswoche” journal. 

For more information: 



Stephanie König
Blumenstr. 5
D-73257 Köngen

Mobil: +49 177 6982 019


Thöring & Stuhr

Kommunikationsberatung GmbH

Arne Stuhr
Mittelweg 142
D-20148 Hamburg

Mobil: +49 177 3055 194

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