BlueScope implements Supplier Portal across Australia and New Zealand
BlueScope is a global steel manufacturing company employing more than 16,000 people in 17 countries. They are the third largest manufacturer of painted and coated steel products globally. With over 100 years in the Australian Steel industry and 50 years in the New Zealand Steel Industry, BlueScope has a portfolio of many well-known and respected brands including; Colourbond, Truecore, Colorsteel and Galvsteel.
BlueScope Steel is also committed to sustainability, and has implemented a number of initiatives to reduce its environmental footprint. The company has set a target to reduce its carbon emissions intensity by 50% by 2030, and has invested in renewable energy sources and more energy-efficient manufacturing processes to achieve this goal. Overall, BlueScope Steel is a major player in the global steel industry, with a focus on producing high-quality steel products while minimizing its environmental impact.
BlueScope is a global steel manufacturing company employing more than 16,000 people in 17 countries. They are the third largest manufacturer of painted and coated steel products globally. With over 100 years in the Australian Steel industry and 50 years in the New Zealand Steel Industry, BlueScope has a portfolio of many well- known and respected brands including; Colourbond, Truecore, Colorsteel and Galvsteel.
BlueScope have used Open Windows to manage contracts since 2003. Recently, BlueScope undertook two projects, firstly, to upgrade to version 7 and reconfigure some elements of the product to better suit their changing business needs and secondly, to implement the Supplier Relationship Management Portal (SRM Portal). The SRM Portal is a web-based portal that enables direct communication and collaboration with suppliers through any browser. Ensuring the safety of all employees and contractors is a key priority for BlueScope as a high percentage of contractor companies are engaged across sites in Australia and New Zealand. BlueScope identified challenges with current practices surrounding contractor pre-qualification.
These challenges included:
- Lack of a company-level management process, resulting in variations to the process at a site level.
- Non-standardised practices across Australian and New Zealand sites
- Lack of a centralised online system to manage and record pre-qualification information.
- Lack of alignment between Safety, Environment, Business and Procurement teams.
- Lack of clarity with regards to who needed to be pre-qualified.
In 2016 BlueScope undertook a project with Ready Contracts (powered by Open Windows) to implement the SRM Portal. The aim of the project was to provide an online system to manage Contractor Company’s Pre-qualification across Australian and New Zealand sites. Pre-qualification is required to check a contractor’s insurances, HSE and risk management, training system, consultation process, accreditations and company level licenses.
The objectives of this project included:
- Developing a fit-for-purpose on-site contractor company level management process.
- Developing a simplified and standardized process for use across all Australian and New Zealand sites.
- Align Safety, Environment, Business and Procurement processes to clarify accountability.
BlueScope was able to achieve this using the SRM Portal and Questionnaires functionality. The SRM Portal provides a platform where contractors can self-register and undertake a pre-qualification questionnaire online. The high level of customisability that Questionnaires provide, meant that BlueScope could configure them to match the specific pre-qualification requirements identified.
Workflow approvals allowed BlueScope to ensure all responsible stakeholders (Procurement, HSE, Logistcs, etc) could be included in reviewing a contractor pre-qualification questionnaire before approval. Centralisation of this information in an online system ensures that historic records are easily maintained and are accessible for auditing purposes. Between 2017 and 2018, a pilot was rolled out to Manufacturing Contractor Companies followed by an additional pilot and roll out to New Zealand Contractor Companies.
During this phase one of the key challenges identified was convincing contractor companies and BlueScope staff of the need to undertake this new process of contractor pre-qualifications. With resistance to change commonly taking the form of statements such as, “It’s not my job” or, “I’m not a contractor, I’m a supplier,”.
A key part of the change management of this implementation was around identifying who needed to be pre-qualified and supporting staff during this business process change. IIt was also discovered during this process that different parts of the business were using hard copy questionnaires at the same time, emphasising the importance of developing a standardised and centralised process for all contractor pre-qualifications.
Implementing the Ready Contracts Procurement Suite and specifically the SRM Portal has delivered a range of benefits to BlueScope, including:
Faster Onboarding of New Contractor Companies: Online registration and completion of pre-qualification questionnaires is providing a significantly faster turnaround time onboarding new suppliers. Over 300 BlueScope contractors of all sizes are now pre-qualified across Australia and New-Zealand.
Simplified Management of Changes: Managing changes to the Contractor Company Pre-Qualification process is simplified through the use of online questionnaires which can be amended and implemented at the discretion of BlueScope.
Standardised Practices: BlueScope now maintains one policy/practice for Contractor Company Pre-Qualification across both their Australia and New Zealand business.
Improved Governance: Ready Contracts SRM Portal and Questionnaires ensures all contractor companies are pre-qualified using a standardised process. The online review and approval structure ensures the relevant stakeholders are involved in actioning contractor pre-qualifications. This oversight ensures that any risk which may have occurred in the past with the use of hard copy forms or site-specific practices are removed.
Greater visibility: Once a contractor company has submitted a pre- qualification questionnaire, online approval and reviews provide visibility into the status of the contractor company’s pre-qualification and who is currently reviewing the information. Online Workflow Approvals: Online contractor company pre-qualification approvals ensure all decisions are both centrally recorded, easily accessible and visible within Ready Contracts for both records management and auditing purposes.