Business Analysis for B2B Trade Portal Development
The Customer is a European company with a long-standing experience in investment consultancy in the construction industry.
The Customer was looking to get a web portal for convenient and effective buyer-vendor e-collaboration in the construction industry. At the start of the project, the Customer needed a detailed requirements specification, and ScienceSoft’s team was there to deliver it.
Our Business Analysts created the concept of a web portal that would enhance the buying process by bringing together buyers, vendors, legal advisers, and all the documentation flowing between these parties in a single place. The web-based buy-and-sell portal would work in the following way.
User registration module
As the web portal provides role-specific functions for all the parties, the registration process is different for buyers, vendors, and legal advisers. Once the submitted registration data is checked by the Customer’s team, an enterprise enters the network of trusted partners and can start buying or selling.
To present products to buyers, vendors create catalog items and for every item select a category from the preset list. This way, the products are further displayed to sellers in a convenient tree-structure form via the catalog.
Buyers can either browse vendors’ catalogs or create and send out Requests for Proposals (RFPs). In the first case, a convenient search is reinforced with Rating and Favorite features. In the second one, a buyer has two options: to send an RFP to a particular vendor or to make it public. The buy-and-sell portal automatically selects relevant vendors based on their profiles and promptly notifies them about a new opportunity. This helps to streamline assignment and execution of requests.
As usually multiple vendors respond to a request, ScienceSoft’s team also suggested implementing a feature for comparing vendors’ proposals. For a simple case, offerings can be sorted by the total cost. For more advanced comparison, buyers can view proposals from multiple vendors structured by prices for particular RFP items. Such a functionality simplifies the choice of a preferred vendor. Any additional information can be negotiated between vendors and buyers via a convenient in-app messenger.
Contract fulfillment module
Once a vendor and a buyer agree on the terms of a deal and choose a legal advisor, the buy-and-sell portal automatically generates a contract. Then both parties can use dedicated dashboards to view their contracts with deal details and to submit claims about violations of contract terms if any. Upon the contract’s fulfillment, both parties are required to rate their partner.
Claim resolution module
Once a claim appears in the buy-and-sell portal, the assigned legal advisor is instantly notified and provided with full access to the in-app message history and documentation related to the deal. It takes legal advisors just one click to enforce their expert decision on a claim.
A system of all-round notifications (both within the web app and via email) keeps users up to date with the stages of deal accomplishment and claim resolution.
To contribute to data-driven decision-making, the buy-and-sell portal gives users access to the statistics on their recent orders, projects, RFPs, vendors and buyers, etc. Multiple graphs help to gain more insights based on sparse purchasing data.
ScienceSoft’s Business Analysts rolled out the concept of a web application that enables the Customer to set up an e-collaboration portal for buyers and vendors in the construction industry. The solution will serve to make buying and selling more convenient and time-effective through workflow automation and fully online deal processing.
The detailed requirements specification has already been complemented with screen prototypes, software architecture, and a graphical UI design. Currently, ScienceSoft’s team is defining the stack of technologies to move to custom web application development.
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