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Stoke-on-Trent reports e-procurement savings

Stoke-on-Trent City Council has said it has saved more than half on its order-processing costs by implementing an electronic procurement and trading system for local government.

The council said processing costs had dropped £34 per transaction with the introduction of the IDeA:marketplace from EGS, the UK's largest e-commerce exchange for the public sector and its suppliers.

A further £10 per transaction saving is expected with the introduction of electronic invoicing in the next year.

The council has already signed up 715 active suppliers and plans to more than double its initial 500 users in the coming months.

The council previously used a manual process for its procurement, and it first went live with the EGS solution in April 2006 after a 12-month market evaluation of suppliers.

"We moved to an electronic procurement system as part of the overall e-government agenda, but we also saw the huge potential it had for reducing costs, gaining management insight into purchasing, and cutting down on maverick buying," said Sebastian Shaw, e-procurement officers for Stoke-on-Trent city council.

The council's future plans include aggregating with other local authorities. "EGS has more than 100 local authorities using its e-commerce exchange, and we are extremely interested in talking to other local authorities about collaboration around procurement in the adult social care context," said Shaw.

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