Effective October 1, 2012, QUALCOMM Incorporated completed a corporate reorganization in which the assets of certain of its businesses and groups, as well as the stock of certain of its direct and indirect subsidiaries, were contributed to Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. (QTI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of QUALCOMM Incorporated. Learn more about these changes

Supplier Management

Helping suppliers meet our standards

Our responsibility extends beyond our direct operations. Because our semiconductor business greatly depends on suppliers for the manufacture of our integrated circuit (IC) products, suppliers play a crucial role in determining our ability to offer products that are socially responsible. So we’re keenly interested in making sure our suppliers meet our standards for social responsibility and sustainability.

Making our expectations clear

In addition to requiring that each of our direct IC manufacturing suppliers has an ISO14001-certified environmental management system, we work with each IC manufacturing supplier in various stages of design and manufacturing to ensure compliance with applicable global environmental legislation and various environmental initiatives.

In 2012, we continued implementation of our Supplier Code of Conduct we launched in 2010. The Code describes our expectations of our IC suppliers. It promotes safe working conditions, respectful treatment of workers and responsible environmental operations, and it outlines our requirements for such areas as labor, health and safety, the environment, business ethics and more. The Code embodies the principles outlined in the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) Code of Conduct.

Working toward a DRC conflict-free supply chain

We share the world’s concern about minerals mined in conflict areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC); we want our supply chain to be DRC conflict-free. We have been working since 2010 with our peers and suppliers in an effort to create DRC conflict-free supply chains.

We are working to implement the five-step framework described in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas. We also contribute to industrywide efforts such as development and implementation of the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) and Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI) Conflict Minerals Reporting Template and the Conflict-Free Smelter (CFS) Program. Through the CFS Program, an independent, third-party auditor evaluates the procurement activities of smelters and refiners to determine whether the smelter or refiner can demonstrate DRC conflict-free sourcing.

To help suppliers understand and meet our expectations, our semiconductor business unit implemented Conflict-Free Minerals Requirements for Suppliers. The requirements are based on the OECD Due Diligence Guidance’s five-step, risk-based due diligence strategy.

In 2012, we surveyed the semiconductor business’s direct suppliers to assess their conflict minerals usage, the state of smelters and refiners in the supply chain, and their preparedness for achieving DRC conflict-free status. As more smelters and refiners are validated through the CFS Program, we, as well as the entire electronics industry supply chain, will move closer to achieving validated DRC conflict-free status. In the meantime, we intend to work with direct suppliers and smelters and refiners to advocate for participation in the CFS Program. Our membership in the EICC-GeSI Extractives Work Group will continue to aid greatly in that effort.

Increasing diversity among our suppliers

In 2012, we continued to increase the diversity of our suppliers, reaching out to small, disadvantaged and minority-owned businesses; businesses owned by women, veterans and people with disabilities; and businesses situated in historically underutilized business zones. Including such suppliers in our supply chain makes us a stronger company. Not only do we benefit from a variety of capabilities and perspectives, we also gain the value of unique, entrepreneurial customized services that many of these suppliers provide. Contracting with such suppliers also helps support local economies—an important consideration in the midst of a global economic slowdown.

Number of Registered Global Diverse Suppliers

In 2012, we:

  • Provided Qualcomm’s business units with comprehensive training demonstrating the benefits of engaging diverse businesses. We also made it easier for managers and procurement personnel to engage diverse suppliers through our database of registered suppliers.
  • Encouraged suppliers to register their businesses with the System for Award Management (SAM) site, a free federal government database that gives suppliers’ businesses greater visibility to Qualcomm and many other global prime contractors. We also continued to encourage potential suppliers to register on our own supplier site, which our employees use when seeking new suppliers for open subcontracting work.
  • Participated in monthly networking events that give our personnel and suppliers a chance to connect with one another. We continued to work with national diverse supplier support agencies that provide suppliers with free counseling, workshops and training programs.
Advancing supplier sustainability throughout our industry

Thinking Ahead

Advancing supplier sustainability throughout our industry

In 2012, we took an important step toward supplier sustainability by joining the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) as an applicant member. EICC is a worldwide association of electronics companies working together to improve efficiency and social, ethical and environmental responsibility in the global electronics supply chain.

Joining EICC gives us a voice in an important industry forum. It also connects and aligns our sustainability efforts with those of similar companies. Perhaps most importantly, membership will enable us to employ EICC’s tools and best practices for assessing and improving sustainability among key electronics industry suppliers. By tapping into EICC resources and working collaboratively with our peers, we’ll build greater momentum toward improved transparency and sustainability among our industry’s common suppliers.

“As mobile technologies continue to benefit society in new and often unexpected ways, it is important that companies like ours collaborate with key stakeholders to foster sustainability throughout the supply chain,” notes Jim Lederer, executive vice president of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., and general manager of QCT. “Our membership in EICC is part of our broader commitment to social responsibility, which is an important part of our corporate culture.”

As a condition of membership, EICC members must adopt the EICC Code of Conduct and must require their suppliers to do the same. Our existing Supplier Code of Conduct is consistent with the EICC code; in fact, some aspects of our code exceed EICC requirements. We are committed to helping our key electronics manufacturing suppliers adopt and implement the EICC code, which will move us toward full membership in the EICC. Read more about EICC membership requirements here.