Deutsche Bahn (DB) is the leading mobility and railway transportation provider in Germany. With over 340,000 employees, DB is working to transition Germany from road traffic to climate-friendly rail through its integrated rail network—for the benefit of the climate, people, the economy, and Europe.
Deutsche Bahn’s procurement team has been dealing with volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity long before there was an acronym for it. No stranger to high-complexity tenders, one of the main challenges the team at DB faced was manually analyzing the vast amount of data from each tender.
“When you have two-thousand parts on the market in any given sourcing event and numerous suppliers - that’s a lot of complexity. Our challenge then becomes reducing it. It’s something we could do in Excel, but the number of errors that occurred and the time we lost was considerable,” Thorsten Velten, Manager of Strategic Procurement at Deutsche Bahn, explains, “Finding time for strategic-level thinking was a challenge.”
Analyzing all that data manually worked. But it wasn’t easy, and it left a lot of potential on the table. Doing so not only cost them time— time that could have been spent on value-adding activities—it also impacted their data quality and made it difficult for them to identify optimal award decisions and to fully leverage their negotiation power.
For the Procurement function to deliver on its promise of improved value, they knew they needed to increase the speed and quality of their processes. They needed a tool that would fulfill two basic requirements. It needed to increase data transparency and help them manage their complexity. “We’d been waiting to find a tool that could manage our complexity,” Velten explains, “and then we found Archlet.”
With Archlet, DB has mastered efficient and ongoing value creation. Archlet has helped DB’s Procurement Team streamline and speed up complex tender analysis while giving stakeholders increased visibility over award decisions.
With Archlet, DB increased the efficiency of their procurement processes by up to 10x and freed up time for more strategic tasks. “Using Archlet saves us a tremendous amount of time,” Velten says. “We can now focus on more important tasks like preparing for negotiations and thinking about our overall negotiation strategy.”
Next to the efficiency gains, Archlet’s advanced analytics and sourcing optimization has led to measurable savings improvements for DB. Through scenario analysis and optimization of allocations, the team has delivered significant on-top savings between 5-30%. DB not only has more time to prepare for negotiations, the insights provided by Archlet mean that they are better equipped for them as well.
“The tool puts the data right at our fingertips. We can now see where the supplier performs well and where they do not. What are the competitive comparisons? What’s the overall bundle?” says Velten.
Lastly, Archlet has helped DB improve the transparency of internal restrictions for the tenders and their opportunity costs.
“With Archlet, we are able to compare scenarios and understand the opportunity costs of including those additional constraints,” explains Velten. The team is now able to bring this transparency to the relevant business stakeholders, raising the trust in their decision-making.
“Stakeholders may have previously challenged decisions because there wasn’t enough clarity. Now, with the push of a button, we have that transparency and can clearly articulate the rationale behind our decisions.” Velten shares.
“I like to use the app and I often make use of it. And a lot of people wouldn’t say this about a Procurement tool, but it’s actually quite fun to use. It’s work, but work needs to be fun. And Archlet is that.”