Supply Chain Excellence Award

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BIC’s Refreshed Supply Chain Excellence Award
(effective December 2019)
The UK book industry’s supply chain accreditation scheme

BIC is delighted to announce the launch of its refreshed Supply Chain Excellence Award (SCEA) Accreditation Scheme.

Application to this scheme is free and open to BIC members and non-members alike. 

Gaining an award on this scheme demonstrates that your organisation is modern, technically-capable, efficient to do business with, and compliant with industry standards and practices.  

Benefits of gaining accreditation
The refreshed BIC SCEA Accreditation Scheme enables book industry organisations to demonstrate the efficiency of their supply chains for both physical and digital products. It aims to reward companies large and small for their investment in automation and for innovative solutions to the supply chain issues they face; and to enable them to be recognised by trading partners and the book industry at large as the best in their class for business efficiency, customer service, environmental concern and innovation.

The scheme enables organisations to test their performance in key areas and find out how they measure up against the industry standards set by BIC. The scope of the award covers BIC’s areas of interest and activity across the supply chain from the initial provision of product metadata using ONIX, via EDI messaging (orders and invoices), right through to the efficient management of returns and the reporting of sales.

Find out more about why your organisation should apply to the BIC SCEA Accreditation Scheme, and the benefits of becoming accredited, here:  

Statement of Benefits 

Who can apply?
BIC welcomes applications from any of the following organisation types: 

  • Booksellers
  • Distributors
  • Printers
  • Publishers
  • Service Providers 
  • Systems Vendors
  • Wholesalers

When will the refreshed scheme take effect?
The refreshed SCEA Accreditation Scheme became effective in December 2019, as such applications are now being accepted. 

Application deadlines for 2022

  • Friday 4th February 2022
  • Friday 6th May 2022
  • Friday 5th August 2022
  • Friday 4th November 2022

List of currently accredited organisations

Currently Accredited Organisations

Application preparation:

1) Getting ready for the online Application Form
Prior to filling out and submitting the online application form, we recommend you familiarise yourself with the questions included in the form so that you can establish if additional input is required from your colleagues. PDF copies of the questionnaire for each organisation type are provided below, for this purpose. Once all information has been gathered, the applying organisation should ideally nominate one individual to complete the online application form on its behalf. NB: BIC will only accept one SCEA application per organisation. The following PDFs are for reference purposes only and should not be submitted to BIC:

SCEA Questionnaire: Booksellers (REFERENCE ONLY)

SCEA Questionnaire: Distributors (REFERENCE ONLY)

SCEA Questionnaire: Printers (REFERENCE ONLY)

SCEA Questionnaire: Publishers (REFERENCE ONLY)

SCEA Questionnaire: Service Providers & Systems Vendors (REFERENCE ONLY)

SCEA Questionnaire: Wholesalers (REFERENCE ONLY)

SCEA Questionnaire: Complete Question Set (REFERENCE ONLY)

Some organisations may be a combination of the organisation types listed above, e.g. some publishers may have their own distribution centre, in which case both sets of questions will need to be completed. The online form allows for this. 

2) Documentation and guidelines for the scheme
Before beginning your organisation's application, we highly recommend that you read through each of the following documents:   

  1. Information about the application process and the online application form: 
    The refreshed SCEA Accreditation Scheme Application Process
  2. Terms used in the SCEA online application form: 
    Glossary of Terms
  3. The SCEA online application form can be found here. 

Acceptable applications
The online application form (above) needs to be completed by all organisations applying to the refreshed scheme, and must be submitted to BIC on or before the accreditation deadlines. PDF applications / those submitted via email will be rejected. Applications received after the application deadlines will be deferred until the next quarter. 

BIC will accept only one application per organisation. 

Reviewing your application
The BIC SCEA Accreditation Panel will meet after each of the deadlines (above) to consider all applications for that quarter; the results will be announced following each of those meetings. We do not publicise details of failed applications – only the successful ones. Details of all discussions by the Panel regarding all applications are kept confidential. 

Accreditation results
Upon successfully becoming accredited, BIC will email your organisation to share the news with you first; a BIC SCEA logo and certificate will be provided to you so you can share this news as you wish. Your organisation will then be featured on our List of Accredited Organisations and BIC  will announce the results via social media and various mailings.

Accreditation is valid for 12 months. Once accredited, organisations will be contacted by BIC directly when they are due for renewal (2-3 months prior to the necessary deadline).  

Any questions regarding this refreshed scheme should be directed to