There was a time when email was the greatest thing since sliced bread. And we don’t hate it, no. It’s just that it’s the worst tool possible for managing multiple purchase orders and everything else to do with procurement.
That back and forth? Digging through weeks-old threads to find the most updated quotes? Forget it.
Here are five ways you can eliminate time-wasting procurement emails.
Manage, Compare, and Select Quotes in One Place
In your Fohlio dashboard, you can ask suppliers for quotes without ever switching to your email. Just select products, complete your RFQ form, and send it off to multiple people all at once — it only takes a few seconds.
Suppliers will receive a notification, log into their Fohlio portal, and fill in the numbers. When they send the quotes back, you can compare all of them side by side, and select the best offers from there.
What if your suppliers had better ideas and wanted to offer alternatives? Easy. You can simply invite them to your project.
The access you provide is extremely customizable: You can share your whole project, only specific divisions, or just some products in particular (things that are impossible to do in Excel sheets). Individual columns can also be shared as editable or view-only, or not even shared at all.
From here, suppliers can go in and add suggested alternatives that you can then compare side by side.
Once you’ve decided on products, you can again simply select the products you’re ready to purchase and create a purchase order.
Depending on your firm’s size, workflows, and protocols, you can either send the PO to the supplier, or send it to your purchasing manager for approval, and then send it to the supplier.
You can also set up an automatic PO approval threshold. For example: Any PO under a thousand dollars can be sent directly to vendors. However, with any purchase order worth a thousand dollars or more, you can require approvals from one or more persons.
There’s no need to open your email, attach POs, download them, sign them, upload the documents again, and send them, so the other person can download them, convert them into a PDF if necessary, and send them to vendors.Whew.
Let’s step for a second and go back to the top of the workflow. Before ever even requesting quotes, part of your process may require that you put together a proposal to present to your client. Again, this only takes a few seconds.
Like with generating purchase orders and requests for quotes, creating a proposal only requires that you select products, filling out a form, and sending it to the client.
Where’s the PO for yesterday’s shipment of bathroom tiles? How many more outstanding invoices do we have, and how much is it all worth? Is the wallpaper arriving on time, and should I schedule the contractors to install them?
With Fohlio, all these questions can be answered in one place. You can sort purchase orders by project, supplier, and payment status. You can check on deliveries. You can send invoices. And you can do all of this without every having to email up-to-date documents, or search through threads for dates and details someone may have mentioned two days ago. Your dashboard has everything in one place, organized however you need it to be.
Good question, and the short answer is no. Email is an integral part of the purchasing process — messaging is still best done through email, as is sending documents that don’t directly relate to products (like contracts). Notifications will also go through email.