German Technical Relief Agency commences cashless procurement pilot with Citi
04 November 2011 | 2621 views | 0
Today, the Technical Relief Agency of the German government (Bundesanstalt Technisches Hilfswerk, THW) started a pilot project in the area of procurement with Citigroup Global Transaction Services (GTS).
The objective: increasing the efficiency of the federal agency's payment mechanisms by working with GTS.
In the pilot project, procurement cards were issued to local relief workers in Solingen and Koblenz. These cards enable the THW staff to purchase at local THW providers without using cash. The project will start with 50 cards that have been issued to selected THW staff at the agency's relevant local branches. The THW plans to maximize the number of cashless local purchases over the medium term. Payment via a procurement card enables the agency to record purchases automatically and centrally analyze them.
As a result, the THW will get a better understanding of budgeted money spent locally with individual providers. The agency will be able, for instance, to use this insight to negotiate better terms and conditions with providers. In addition, the agency can reduce the time and money spent on holding cash in-house and sig-nificantly reduce the number of invoices to be processed. If the pilot project is successful, the THW plans to roll out the cooperation nationwide to all 668 local branches in Germany.
"From our discussions with the THW, we quickly understood that transparency and efficiency were the key drivers for the THW. And that is precisely what we will achieve with a procurement card program that was tailored to meet THW's requirements. In addition, the THW volunteers will be able to spend significantly less time on administrative cash management tasks and will be better able to concentrate on their core activities," says Kate Pohl, Head of Citi GTS in Germany and Austria.