System procurement at DB Fernverkehr
50% time savings in
For the approximately 90 million long-distance passengers who travel each year, DB Fernverkehr must ensure that journeys are as safe and pleasant as possible. This requires the constant procurement of new components and products.
In the past, tenders of various kinds were mostly carried out on a document basis using Word and Excel, with the requirements of the departments involved being compiled within documents, checked, coordinated and finally put out to tender.
This repeatedly resulted in considerable effort, because the constant exchange of documents between often more than 40 internal and external persons often resulted in unclear work statuses or even inconsistencies due to the lack of a central and uniform database.
The creation of specifications that could be put out to tender and their coordination with other internal departments such as purchasing, the legal department’s procurement law experts and potential suppliers was therefore always a time-consuming and error-prone process that could easily take several years, depending on the tender topic.
In order to achieve a reduction in workload, acceleration and error reduction throughout the entire tender process for a new, success-critical and high-profile project to procure the video-on-demand platform for the ICE, DB Fernverkehr used a professional requirements management tool this time.
DB Fernverkehr paid particular attention to ensuring that such a tool was web-based and lightweight, met european data protection requirements, and could be used in the project at very short notice without any major setup or training effort. Great importance was also attached to the simple generation of all necessary documents with consistent content, the import and automatic comparison of vendor responses, and close, direct and competent support from the tool provider.
For DB Fernverkehr, the requirements management software ReqSuite® RM from OSSENO Software proved to be the most suitable offering for this purpose.
At the beginning of the cooperation, OSSENO consultants held a one-day workshop to set up the solution for the first project phase.
Here, the planned tender process and the basic structure of the documents to be generated were analyzed and a data model was created to visualize the dependencies of different concepts and artifacts for all parties involved.
Based on the functional possibilities offered by ReqSuite® RM, parts of this data model as well as the desired document templates were deposited in ReqSuite® RM during the same workshop.The goal was to keep the initial tool configuration minimal and to expand it successively according to the needs in progressive project phases, so that the initial focus could be on the elaboration and consolidation of the requirement.
Therefore, the options for bidder responses and their evaluations were not added to the tool configuration until several months later.
Due to the exact and yet fast adaptation to the needs of the project and the intuitive usability of the software, the first requirements could already be entered into ReqSuite® RM the day after the workshop. Training of the project team, which at times included more than 40 people, was not necessary due to the high intuitiveness and the complete adaptation to known terms, concepts and templates – a short introduction by the project manager was sufficient.
In particular, the step-by-step expansion of the tool configuration over the course of the following months enabled the project team to focus on the current work at any time.
This also made it possible to react flexibly to the current needs of the project.
ReqSuite® RM was ultimately used not only for the actual requirements and tendering phase, but for the entire project up to acceptance.
During the tendering phase, all requirements, framework conditions, evaluation criteria, vendor responses and reconciliations were managed centrally via the tool and all relevant documents were generated from it. The selection and awarding process was massively facilitated by ReqSuite® RM, since e.g. the point allocation could also be calculated in ReqSuite® RM. After the contract award, it was then used as a discussion, coordination and progress control platform with the selected supplier and further served as a general reference tool.
Consequently, ReqSuite® RM was used by external consultants, IT specialists incl. CISO, quality management, purchasing and vendors in addition to departmental staff.
The overall goal of avoiding the typical inefficiencies of document-based work in this project was achieved in full. Since the project was able to focus entirely on content-related work and reduce consolidation and administrative tasks to a minimum, DB Fernverkehr puts the savings compared to similar projects at around 50% of the time. At the same time, the generation of consistent documents from a common database increased specification quality by minimizing inconsistencies.
DB Fernverkehr’s initial fears that the tool would not scale for the size and complexity of the project (several hundred requirements over 8,000 vendor responses) or that it would overwhelm the participants were all not confirmed.
On the contrary, the tool supported the entire project perfectly from the beginning and made the work much easier. Questions and customization needs, which nevertheless arose as a matter of course, could be solved immediately by the competent support, creating a strong trust in ReqSuite® RM and OSSENO in a very short time.
„ReqSuite® RM saved us an incredible amount of time and work during the last tender. The extensive filter options and the assistance functions enabled us to quickly identify inaccurate, missing, or incompletely specified requirements and thus prevent problems at an early stage. Thanks to the very professional and extremely fast support from OSSENO as well as the easy familiarization with the tool, we were able to completely concentrate on the actual content of our work. We will continue to use ReqSuite®RM in the future.“