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As I returned from my vacation, I took time to ponder how my experience booking via an online network related directly to buying and selling on the Ariba Network, and how, as a seller, you can increase sales. 

 

Let’s go back to the beginning of my vacation planning. I started browsing the travel network for the perfect vacation spot.  We had to choose between taking a beach vacation (preferred by my wife) and a vacation in the mountains (my preference).  In the end, we compromised – we went to the beach.

It was great to have some time off and enjoy the summer. 

 

I used search criteria like location, number of beds, additional amnesties like kid friendly, wifi access, and more.  I reviewed the search results and looked at the provided information, pictures, and feedback from other users – this brings me to the first lesson learned

 

  • Sell yourself completely and honestly. 
  • Create an attractive supplier profile with correct and up to date information about your company and your offering.
  • Select all the product and service categories and ship-to or service locations your company can offer.
  • Add business, financial and tax information to you profile. • Link your Ariba Network profile to your social network and corporate webpage.
  • Add your D&B DUNS
  • Provide you certifications information 

 

I sent inquiries to the hosts of the apartments/houses which fulfilled my search criteria’s. I received many answers from potential hosts and was impressed by the many quick and friendly responses. 

 

Second lesson:  Act quickly. If you receive a discovery lead or an invitation to an event in your inbox react immediately – indicate that you are planning to participate and connect with the buyer.  In my booking request I asked for a child crib and highchair for my daughter. I shortlisted hosts which provided a positive response to my extra requirement. 

 

Next lesson: 

 

  • Be attentive.
  • Read the event information carefully and make sure you understand what is requested.
  • Don’t hesitate to reach out to the buyer via the build-in message functionality to get further clarification and details. 
  • Make sure when you respond to questions that you response is clear and correct. 

 

Some of the hosts provided special discounts for multi day stays which we used to further shortlist the offers. 

 

Concluding lesson learned

 

  • Plan to be the best option.
  • Learn what your customer is asking for, plan your strategy before the event, and provide a competitive price
  • In case of an auction you will receive feedback regarding the competitiveness of your offer and you are able to submit a better offer, therefore you might want to consider starting not with your best and last offer.
  • Read the auction bidding rules carefully – the buyer might have selected an auction type which has an automatic time extension of the event in case a bid comes in last minute.
  • In case of an RFP, the event does not any automatic feedback regarding the competitiveness of your price; therefore you might want to respond with a competitive response.

Thank You Veterans.jpgWorld War I officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Palace of Versailles in France. However, fighting ceased seven months earlier when an armistice between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. For that reason, November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of “the war to end all wars.”

 

 

Today, Veterans Day serves as a day to honor the men and women who served in the U.S. Armed Forces and thank them for protecting our freedom.

 

 

We are lucky to have three wonderful veterans on our own Ariba Discovery team: Tripp Russell served in the United States Marine Corps for four years as a Lance Corporal, Keaton Russell served in the Marine Corps for six years as a Corporal, and Jason Duarte served in the Marine Corps for five and half years as a Sergeant. All three of these amazing young men have been a huge asset to our team and it is such a pleasure to get to work with them every day.

Our Veterans.jpg

 

 

In addition to the veterans on our own team, Ariba Discovery also works with many veteran-owned companies such as Armed Forces Construction Group, LLC. The company's co-owner, Sam Crawford, spent six years serving his country as a member of the United States Navy. Today, he is devoted to helping his fellow veterans build bright futures by employing them to support his commercial and residential construction projects. And Ariba Discovery connects him with opportunities to place them. Crawford currently has crews in 16 states.

 

 

There is no doubt that hiring U.S. veterans makes sense from many standpoints. In his article for Veterans Today, Captain Benjamin Jones shares the top 10 reasons to hire a veteran:

 

1.  Accelerated Learning Curve

Veterans have the proven ability to learn new skills and concepts. In addition, they can enter your workforce with identifiable and transferable skills, proven in real world situations. This background can enhance your organization’s productivity.

 

2.  Leadership

The military trains people to lead by example as well as through direction, delegation, motivation and inspiration. Veterans understand the practical ways to manage behaviors for results, even in the most trying circumstances. They also know the dynamics of leadership as part of both hierarchical and peer structures.

 

3.  Teamwork

Veterans understand how genuine teamwork grows out of a responsibility to one’s colleagues. Military duties involve a blend of individual and group productivity. They also necessitate a perception of how groups of all sizes relate to each other and an overarching objective.

 

4.  Diversity and Inclusion in Action

Veterans have learned to work side by side with individuals regardless of diverse race, gender, geographic origin, ethnic background, religion and economic status as well as mental, physical and attitudinal capabilities. They have the sensitivity to cooperate with many different types of individuals.

 

5.  Efficient Performance under Pressure

Veterans understand the rigors of tight schedules and limited resources. They have developed the capacity to know how to accomplish priorities on time, in spite of tremendous stress. They know the critical importance of staying with a task until it is done right.

 

6.  Respect for Procedures

Veterans have gained a unique perspective on the value of accountability. They can grasp their place within an organizational framework, becoming responsible for subordinates’ actions to higher supervisory levels. They know how policies and procedures enable an organization to exist.

 

7.  Technology and Globalization

Because of their experiences in the service, veterans are usually aware of international and technical trends pertinent to business and industry. They can bring the kind of global outlook and technological savvy that all enterprises of any size need to succeed.

 

8.  Integrity

Veterans know what it means to do “an honest day’s work.” Prospective employers can take advantage of a track record of integrity, often including security clearances. This integrity translates into qualities of sincerity and trustworthiness.

 

9.  Conscious of Health and Safety Standards

Thanks to extensive training, veterans are aware of health and safety protocols both for themselves and the welfare of others. Individually, they represent a drug-free workforce that is cognizant of maintaining personal health and fitness. On a company level, their awareness and conscientiousness translate into protection of employees, property and materials.

 

10. Triumph over Adversity

In addition to dealing positively with the typical issues of personal maturity, veterans have frequently triumphed over great adversity. They likely have proven their mettle in mission critical situations demanding endurance, stamina and flexibility. They may have overcome personal disabilities through strengths and determination.

 

 

To learn more about Armed Forces Construction Group, LLC and how they are successfully leveraging Ariba Discovery, check out their press release.

 

 

Visit Ariba Discovery and follow Ariba Discovery on Twitter.

It is August, it is summer in Heidelberg, and it is and vacation time! We are about to spend two weeks in France and Italy.

beach.JPG

This year I did our entire vacation home booking via a popular consumer to consumer lodging network.

 

I have to say, I loved it; the network I used has a huge selection of all type of places you can imagine all over the world.

 

The app is simple, it is really easy to search and find the perfect place for your holiday trip.

The booking process is straight forward with build-in payment process - no need to pay in cash or wire money.

Last but not least, all the communication between the two parties is done in the Cloud via the network site.

 

OK, so you’re thinking that’s just travel. Easy stuff. A network for business-to-consumer or even consumer-to-consumer interaction.

It can also be business-to-business. All of the above applies to the Ariba Network.

 

The Ariba Network is the largest and most global business network and we are continuing to see huge growth.

 

More and more SAP customers are connecting their SAP system with the Ariba Network, which will further increase the transactions going through the network dramatically.

 

This will therefore provide you with a unique opportunity to find new customer, connect with them, and increase your revenue.

 

The Ariba Network allows you to market your products and services, attract new customers, participate in sourcing events, negotiate contracts, receive purchase orders, and respond with purchase order confirmation and advanced shipment notice. Quickly flip your purchase order into an invoice and receive invoice status updates and payments through a single network.

 

It is simple for you as a supplier, the Ariba Network provides you with a single portal to connect with all of your customers who are using the Ariba Network.

Just a single user name and password is required. If you should run into issues this community, including all of our support channels, is at your service.

 

I will be back again in September. In the meantime enjoy the summer and hopeful find some time to spend quality time with your loved ones and recharge your batteries.

 

Additionally, you might want revisit your company profile in the Ariba Network to have it up to date and all the appropriate product and service categories, ship-to and service locations  and industries selected to ensure that you will be found by the buyers in the network.

 

Take the opportunity and turn the Ariba Network into your powerful B2B commerce channel.

sunfl.jpg

Recently, Procter & Gamble announced an ambitious new goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from its facilities 30% by 2020.  Developed in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, the goal represents an important step in the Company's continued efforts to minimize greenhouse gas emissions.

 

P&G is also joining the Climate Savers Program, a program sponsored by the World Wildlife Fund to enable leadership companies to collaborate and accelerate their efforts to address climate change.  The initiative will have significant benefits aside from the obvious environmental impact as well.

 

"Energy conservation and increasing renewable energy will not only drive emission reductions, but will decrease costs and help create innovative solutions that will help our brands win with consumers" said Martin Riant, Group President at P&G.

 

Going Green is Good for Businesses of all Sizes

 

As large anchor companies continue their efforts, they will want to partner with smaller companies in their supply chains to improve overall sustainability efforts. Increasingly, buyers are under pressure to find suppliers that can help them achieve their environmental goals.  Since smaller companies are often more flexible, they can innovate quickly, securing relationships with large customers. Green initiatives lead to cost savings, talent attraction and enhanced reputation.

 

So, even though companies like P&G may get more press, smaller companies stand to benefit greatly from developing their own green plan.

 

Got Green?

 

Suppliers who use Ariba Discovery can distinguish themselves as organizations taking green practices seriously. Ariba Discovery's Green Initiative labels provide a way for suppliers to highlight their online profiles, making it easy for buyers connect with like-minded partners.  The green Initiatives labels cover Planning, Energy, Carbon Footprint, Transportation and Products and Services. It's never been easier for buyers to find green suppliers and for environmentally conscious suppliers to be found.

South Carolina Flooding 2.jpgAfter a week of torrential rain finally subsided, South Carolinians began to survey the damage to their road systems, battered by the record-level flooding. The storm is part of an exceptional weather pattern that poured more than a foot of rain across South Carolina and drenched several other states. According to the National Weather Service, Sunday was the wettest day in the history of South Carolina's capital city, Columbia.

 

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has said the downpour is the kind of storm seen only once in 1,000 years, causing the deaths of nine people within the state and two additional deaths in North Carolina. Haley also noted that 550 roads and bridges were closed across South Carolina, and all will have to be checked for structural integrity. Repairs could take many weeks to complete, delaying or stopping normal transportation throughout the region.

 

In an El Niño year, devastating storms like the one in South Carolina are expected to continue for months, so companies need to prepare their supply chains. If you think this doesn’t apply to your business, think again. Weather disasters can devastate any supplier at any time, not just those in the path of El Niño. For example, in 2000, mobile-phone manufacturer Ericsson lost $400 million in sales revenue because of a single lightning strike. The lightning hit a power line in Albuquerque, New Mexico, causing a massive surge in the surrounding electrical grid, which in turn started a fire at a local plant owned by Royal Philips Electronics, N.V., destroying millions of microchips. Unfortunately, Ericsson employed a single-sourcing policy. As a result, when the Philips plant shut down after the fire, Ericsson had no other source of microchips, which interrupted production for months and  cost the company big.

 

 

Weather-Proofing Your Business

One of the best ways you can prepare your company for weather-related supply chain disruption is to know your suppliers. “As industries have grown increasingly globalized, so have their sources of raw materials and component parts,” explains Erica E. Phillips. “Experts advise companies to map out supplier networks so they’ll know what’s at risk of being cut off by extreme weather.”

 

Another strategy is to identify alternative suppliers. Companies should never rely on a single source of supply – the state of California joined Ericsson in learning that lesson the hard way when the supplier of its certificate paper closed suddenly and left residents unable to obtain birth, marriage, or death certificates for months.

 

The single-supplier rule is especially true if there is a high chance of a key supplier being affected by El Niño. The storms have already started to make an impact, so you should secure backup sources of supply now, before something goes wrong. Luckily, tools like Ariba Discovery empower you to find and qualify new suppliers quickly and easily. The tool makes it simple to evaluate, compare, and respond to proposals by receiving responses in a single location, with the exact details needed.

 

Bad weather is bound to strike. By developing a proactive plan, you can insure your company has the right resources to ride out any storm and sail into sunnier days ahead.

 

 

Visit Ariba Discovery and follow Ariba Discovery on Twitter.

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