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Taking the Effort Out of Sourcing Suppliers

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In my last two posts, I talked about the benefits of business networks for both buyers and sellers and shared how B&H Photo, Video, & Pro Audio, a leading retailer of imaging products, benefits from being a networked seller. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits buyers can realize from being networked.

Before the existence of business networks, buyers had to spend considerable time and efforts looking for possible suppliers, for example by searching the Internet, digging through business directories, or hounding friends and colleagues for recommendations. It could take weeks or even months to figure out which suppliers could do the job AND had the capacity to do so in the required time frame.  Today, buyers can simply post their buying needs on a business network and get notified when there is a matching seller. By tapping into a business network, buyers can easily find just the right suppliers with less time and effort.

Time savings is not the only benefit, though. By leveraging the power of the Networked Economy, buyers can identify opportunities to reduce costs. For instance, buyers using business networks can save an average of 15% on what they currently purchase today. This can mean thousands and even millions of dollars to the bottom line.

Jim Ambrose, Sr. Sourcing Manager at TopSource LLC, can speak to these benefits. He used a business network to find new suppliers for barbeque grills – with success. For a special promotion at the store level, he was looking to source consumer-grade barbeque grills. So he described his needs in a posting and published it on the network.. As a result, he received eight responses from sellers in just a few days – six of which turned out to be solid leads that he decided to vet to become official suppliers for TopSource. It was so fast and effective that he wants all of the company’s sourcing teams to use the business network for every sourcing engagement.

For TopSource, business has gone social. And there’s no turning back…

About the author
Rob Mihalko
Rob Mihalko

Rob oversees Ariba’s overall seller marketing initiatives as well as the Ariba Discovery service. Before joining Ariba, Rob held a variety of marketing, business development, and finance roles at Microsoft, Disney, and Intel. He was also a manag... Read More >>>

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