A high-tech commercial bank, Silicon Valley Bank has helped fund more than 30,000 start-ups and is on the list of largest banks in the United States. The bank is also one of the largest providers of financial services to wine producers in Napa Valley. The company focuses on lending to technology companies, providing multiple services to venture capital, revenue-based financing and private equity firms that invest in technology and biotechnology, and also on private banking services for high-net-worth individuals, in its home market in Silicon Valley. In addition to taking deposits and making loans, the bank operates venture capital and private equity divisions that sometimes invest in the firm’s commercial banking clients. The bank operates from 29 offices in the United States and has banking operations in the following places: London, Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai, Herzliya Pituah, Frankfurt, Toronto.

Terry LaRock

VP Group Manager for Purchasing, Travel and Assets

After Terry came to work for Silicon Valley Bank, he began installing the Purchasing, Requisitioning, Quotations, Inventory and Receiving modules. Since the entire purchasing process was still on a paper system, he had his work cut out for him. After implementing Bellwether Software the bank soon became completely paperless and even have their suppliers set up so they can e-mail PO and RFQ documents directly to them in PDF format.

Company: Silicon Valley Bank
Industry : Financial
Location : Santa Clara, CA
Company Size : 3600

“The need was clearly there, and my previous experience with Bellwether had been a good one. None of our Purchasing Department’s employees had ever used an automated system, and some had their doubts that the system would deliver what it promised. Because of Bellwether’s ease of implementation and ease of use, however, they were soon won over. Now, they are all strong users.”

Implementing Paperless Requisitions

Terry stated, “We researched our environment and found that 95% of the orders came from administration departments and IT groups. That showed us where to start implementing the Requisitions module. Electronic requisitions now flow through Purchasing, and the requisition approval process is handled automatically by the Bellwether approval process. If we find missing information on a requisition or if a requisition has been rejected, we can look back through the Bellwether system and know where to go – no more paper shuffling to see where the requisitions. We really use the Requisition Status Inquiry, the Order History and Requisition History reports.”

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of orders came from administration departments and IT groups

Other Modules

Terry says the Purchasing Department benefits from all the modules they have purchased. The Quotation module was recently a big help. “Not too long ago,” stated Terry, “our bank was going through a re-branding process. We needed to get quotes from a lot of vendors for supplying stationery and envelopes to our thirty-two locations across the United States. The Quotations module was great for receiving quotes from suppliers. One of our buyers observed Bellwether in action and said,

‘Wow, it really works!’”

Advice to users

If you are ready to implement Bellwether Purchasing Software within your organization, Terry says to start with a small test group to ensure your objectives and commitments are met. “But,” he adds, “even people who have had bad experiences with different software will get on board. Bellwether Purchasing Software will put their fears away in no time because it really does work!”

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