Sausalito, CA June 17, 2003 ProcurePoint, a provider of solutions for optimizing corporate hotel spend, has released the latest version of its flagship platform, adding an expanded sourcing database, new request-for-proposal tools and improved visibility and decision-support features, among other upgraded capabilities aimed at helping companies reduce their travel-related costs.
The provider said that it is releasing the latest iteration of its Enterprise Transient platform in time for companies gearing up for their annual negotiations for preferred hotel rates, a process that usually occurs in the last quarter of the fiscal year.
New product features in the solution include an expanded sourcing database with listings for more than 60,000 properties and improved database search features including hotel size, chain affiliation and zip code intended to speed sourcing and RFP creation.
The new version also features integration and automation of National Business Travel Association (NBTA)-standard RFP formats for hotels and corporate users, as well as improved RFP customization tools in addition to the existing 70 hotel-specific bid variables.
ProcurePoint said that it has improved real-time communication during auctions conducted through the solution's OpenBid auction engine, adding bid change alerts and instant message capability with any or all bidders. The upgraded visibility and decision-support tools include new logging, tracking and data sorting features, as well as weighted bid analysis scorecard reports.
Finally, the solution now provides on-demand data export, improving integration with external travel agencies and online booking tools, including American Express and GetThere.
The provider said that more than a dozen companies, including 11 Fortune 1000 enterprises, used ProcurePoint technology to negotiate their 2003 preferred hotel rates, completing more than 500 online negotiations for 500,000 room nights worldwide, with an approximate value of $100 million. ProcurePoint said its tools saved those companies an average of 15 percent, year over year, on their hotel spend.
In addition to the hard-dollar savings achieved through using the solution, ProcurePoint CEO Ed Sarraille points to the soft benefits from automating previously manual processes for negotiating with hotels. "Travel managers tell us that they see value beyond process improvements and cost savings, as they are freed up to be more strategic in the day-to-day execution of their jobs, enabling them, for example, to build better supplier and traveler relationships," Sarraille said.
For more information on solutions for travel and expense management, see the article "Expense Reports Made Inexpensive," the Net Best Thing column in the December 2001 issue of iSource Business.