Historically a business’ purchasing process is very manual and highly administrative. To place an order with a supplier, a purchase order would be prepared which meant a document was prepared either using Word or Google Docs or through your accounting system (Xero, Quickbooks Online or MYOB). The document was then sent to the supplier who would have to rekey the order into their inventory or accounting system. The supplier would then send a series of emails to their customer advising of the status of the order.
With the level of business transactions increasing and the expectation that information is exchanged in real time, the purchasing processes of businesses had to be streamlined.
One development has been the introduction of a business to business (B2B) portal. The portal is basically a website which is connected to your inventory management system which allows for a secure way for businesses to request quotes and place orders with their suppliers.
A B2B portal provides significant benefits to both customers and suppliers. For customers, the B2B portal provides an easy way for orders to be placed with suppliers or for quotes to be requested. No more preparing purchase orders in Word or using their accounting system to produce purchase orders which need to be emailed to your supplier. Another benefit is that the customer is able to view the status of their order through the portal so that they no longer have to rely on receiving phone calls or emails.
For suppliers, the B2B portal streamlines the order processing process. As the B2B portal is connected to their inventory management system once the customer places the order they are advised of an order which is sitting as an open sales order for them to action. No more rekeying of customer purchase orders into your inventory management system.
As the B2B portal is connected to the business’ inventory management system it will always reflect the current products and pricing of the business. This provides a huge benefit to businesses who are constantly adding and removing products or updating pricing as they can always provide accurate product and pricing information rather than trying to maintain a constantly changing product catalogue.
As the customer’s purchase order is instantly converted into an open sales order it allows the business to implement a paperless online ordering system quickly and easily. This will eliminate data entry which can lead to errors when a purchase order is rekeyed as well as reducing business administration costs which will lead to improved margins.
Is your business looking to streamline their purchasing processes?
Contact us now for a free initial consultation and see how a B2B portal with an inventory management solution can streamline your business operations.