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June 4, 2014

What fuels the Calor Gas procurement strategy?

Wax Digital web3 is providing ‘best of breed’ procurement software.

By Duncan Macrae

Calor Gas is implementing Wax Digital web3 P2P (Purchase to Pay) to improve the management of its multi-million pound annual spend and drive further efficiency savings within its transport fleet and specialist field service engineering divisions.

Tasked with building a new procurement function from the ground up, Kevin Wing, group purchasing manager at Calor identified the need for a specialist eProcurement solution as being critical to help the company optimise its spend control. Calor also wanted to negotiate more favourable terms with its suppliers to reduce inventory level costs and reinvest these savings into the wider business.

Following a competitive tender, five solutions were shortlisted, including Wax Digital web3. After thorough analysis of the market, Calor selected web3 due to what is described as a richness of functionality and ease of use to transform the efficiency of its entire purchase-to-pay lifecycle.

Wing said: "It was clear to me that we needed to introduce greater control, compliance and visibility across our purchasing processes. web3 is a robust, integrated and highly intuitive solution that will enable us to achieve these objectives by providing us with significant efficiency savings and enhanced reporting. By demonstrating high levels of engagement, the right solution fit and strong references throughout the selection process, Wax Digital stood out from the start as our preferred supplier."

web3 will be integrated with Calor’s existing JDE Enterprise 1 (E1) finance system and will enable Calor employees to easily raise requisitions within an electronic supplier portal from multiple product categories. These requisitions will be subject to Calor’s strict purchasing approvals policies and, once approved, will generate purchase orders that are automatically uploaded to E1 and issued to the supplier. The receipting of goods will also take place within web3, with receipt data written to E1 to allow for three-way matching of scanned supplier invoices, further reducing the time, complexity and costs associated with paper-based administrative processes.

web3 will initially be rolled out to Calor’s Transport and CalorForce divisions. Calor operates a mixed fleet of over 1,000 commercial vehicles, tankers and trailers and is supported by a network of nine transport workshops throughout the UK. CalorForce employs over 100 engineers to provide installation, maintenance and repair services to homes and businesses.

Wing explained: "Purchasing activity within Calor presented challenges in a variety of areas, one such area in particular was the need to simplify the processes surrounding large volumes of low value transactions and the ability to readily identify and purchase goods and services. With web3 in place, we will be able to introduce more effective spend control and centralised processes to reduce complexity and significantly cut processing time and administration costs.

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"Gaining improved reporting insight into our key areas of spend at line level will also assist us in negotiating more competitive prices with our suppliers and allow authorised staff to more easily identify the goods they need, when they need them, to drive best value."

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