E-Sourcing Electronic Platforms in Real Business

E-Sourcing Electronic Platforms in Real Business

Luís Sampaio, José Figueiredo
Copyright: © 2011 |Pages: 21
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-463-9.ch011
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The authors carried out this research in a specific context within the electronic markets - business-to-business (B2B). The purpose is to assert the major blocks needed to be covered by an e-purchasing tool in order to be successful. Another goal is to identify how this e-purchasing tool allows buyers (firms) to practice Strategic Sourcing. After an enlarged literature review on E-Sourcing Electronic Platforms (ESEP) and e-purchasing markets they defined a methodological framework and construct a case study. Their strategy was to use one case study only. The use of a single case study is addressed and justified. Within their case study the authors took advantage of the data collected in a survey recently conducted by Vortal (Portuguese firm that owns several B2B platforms in different electronic markets). Finally some conclusions are tentatively constructed.
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The first electronic markets (EM) originated with the emergence of the Internet and the World Wide Web boom in the beginning of the 90s. EMs can be divided in two main groups: Business-to-Consumer (B2C) and Business-to-Business (B2B). In this research we focus in B2B.

We begin contextualizing B2B EM (E-Economy, E-Business, E-Commerce, Physical and EM, E-Sourcing versus E-Procurement, Strategic Sourcing) and identify some of the main characteristics of ESEP (core building blocks, main buyers and suppliers benefits, E-Government and evolution). We reflected on the physical and virtual value chain model in order to take advantage of the integration of both chains. Then we put forward a methodological framework. In a reflective process, we tried to understand two questions: What characteristics should a successful e-purchasing tool have, and how can a successful e-purchasing tool allow firms to practice Strategic Sourcing policies?

After we build up one Case Study based on the Civil Construction Sector platform (ECONSTROI – www.econstroi.com), a platform owned and managed by Vortal S.A. We used and reflected on the data of a survey conducted by Vortal S.A in October 2008 addressing more than fifty buyer firms.

Finally we draw some conclusions and outline some recommendations.

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