100 Days to "e"

Union Pacific Railroad deploys Clarus e-procurement system

Atlanta  December 4, 2001  Union Pacific Railroad (UP) may be almost 150 years old, but it only took the railroad 100 days to complete the deployment of a new e-procurement system.

The railroad just finished implementing software provider Clarus' eProcurement solution, and the first transaction going out on the system is an office supply order with Boise Cascade, one of the buyer-managed catalogs that Union Pacific has access to under the new system.

In addition to the Boise Cascade catalog, UP's initial implementation includes catalogs from Comark, Dell, Snap on Tools, Software Plus, GESCO, Better Business World and an internal stock material catalog that is expected to grow to 60,000 items.

The system is integrated into separate stock and non-stock material systems. Over the coming months, UP plans to add additional supplier catalogs and to eventually bring the majority of its 50,000 employees into the system.

"It was our goal to implement a procurement solution that would integrate easily with our other systems and be accessible to the bulk of our employees," said Tom Holmes, director of e-supply chain at the railroad.

Union Pacific is one of the founding members of RailMarketplace.com, a consortium of mainline North American railroads formed to leverage supply chain efficiencies that are available through collaborative technologies.

UP is not Clarus' first venture into the railroad industry. Clarus previously assisted the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway Co. (BNSF) with its internal procurement initiatives last year.

Clarus and Deloitte & Touche (D&T) Management Solutions worked jointly on the UP deployment.