08 May 2003 | Robin Parker
Software firm AT Kearney Procurement Solutions is to launch an e-sourcing package that allows data to be shared across supply management applications.
Developed in conjunction with the group's e-sourcing software unit eBreviate, the eSourcing Suite 5.0i is an Internet-based tool, enabling procurement information to be transferred across spend management, auction, deal management, sourcing and request for price modules.
The redesigned suite employs common security architecture, which provides an area to authorise and authenticate users and to create different permission levels based on the user.
Features include a diversity spend reporting option, which can track spend by primary or secondary suppliers in ways that can help purchasers to meet equal opportunities or social responsibility goals.
These include comparing spend between firms owned by women or ethnic minorities.
It also allows users to compare direct and indirect spend, to weigh suppliers on pre-determined criteria to improve or penalise their bid automatically, and to host more competitive auctions with real-time bid visibility and instant messaging.
The suite will be available globally in the autumn, and car maker Volkswagen has already been named as an early adopter.
Joe Raudabaugh, head of AT Kearney Procurement Solutions, said Volkswagen was one of several big customers whose needs influenced the design of the suite.
"The suite brings strategic sourcing technology to a new level and creates a footprint that can be easily integrated into any procurement process or system," he said.
Meanwhile, parent group EDS has formed a unit to co-ordinate outsourcing services.
EDS Business Process Services will help companies to manage the outsourcing of procurement, customer relationship management, human resources, finance and accounting.
The group has won $117 million of new and expanded contracts in this area, including a multi-year agreement to extend call centre outsourcing for the Dow Chemical Company.