Definition

e-procurement (supplier exchange)

Contributor(s): Luis Barbosa and MacKenzie Reece

E-procurement (electronic procurement) is the business-to-business (B2B) requisitioning, ordering and purchase of goods and services over the Internet. An important goal of every e-procurement initiative is to acquire a product or sevice of the greatest value at the best possible price.

E-procurement software can make the procurement process faster and more efficient, allowing employees from many different departments to order the items they need using a centralized, controlled system. This includes configurable approval workflows to ensure that non-procurement staff are still purchasing according to company guidelines and budgets. The software typically includes features for creating and managing requisitions, hosted catalogs and supplier-maintained catalogs, purchase order (PO) management, and receiving and reconciliation.

Enterprise-level e-procurement software allows organizations to also monitor and control spending. The majority of organizations that purchase e-procurement tools are large enough that their inefficiencies are too costly and widespread to fix with manual-based procurement strategies.

This was first published in June 2016

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