“ATG came in with a detailed game plan and timeline – even down to individual communications. They could not have made the process any easier. It’s been one of the most successful rollouts we’ve experienced.”
Director of Procurement Services,
Spring Branch ISD
Spring Branch Independent School District (ISD) is known for innovation and academic success in the greater Houston area. The district boasts an enrollment of more than 37,000 students, 46 campuses, and approximately 3,500 teachers.
Spring Branch had a catering contract in place that was not meeting the needs of users due to the limited cuisine options and services available. The contract included only 16 vendors and was being managed outside of the district’s e-procurement system, restricting the procurement department’s visibility and approval control over its catering spend.
The task of conducting an RFP for multiple catering vendors would have been considerably time consuming for the district’s procurement staff, and previous RFPs had generated a low response rate. Additionally, it would have been extremely impractical to add each individual vendor to the district’s existing e-procurement system.
Rick Gay, Director of Procurement Services,
Spring Branch ISD
Spring Branch signed on to E&I’s America To Go contract in October 2018 and launched in January 2019. “ATG came in with a detailed game plan and timeline – even down to individual communications,” explained Rick Gay, Director of Procurement Services at Spring Branch. “They could not have made the process any easier. It’s been one of the most successful rollouts we’ve experienced.”
Key implementation steps included:
- Customization – ATG handled outreach to all vendors, including signing individual contracts, uploading and updating menus, training, compliance, and supporting other district initiatives.
- Integration – ATG worked with the district’s IT department to integrate with its existing e-procurement system and appear as a punchout, allowing the district to easily expand its offering through ATG without creating a catalog for each new vendor.
- Vendor Outreach – ATG handled outreach to all vendors, including signing individual contracts, uploading and updating menus, training, compliance, and supporting other district initiatives.
- Risk Mitigation – All the necessary insurance documentation for vendors is managed and updated by ATG, making it significantly easier for the district to maintain a higher level compliance.
- Campus Outreach – To promote the new contract districtwide, ATG hosted an informational meeting/tasting event with end-users. This served as a valuable opportunity to introduce the new ordering process and was also an effective way for users to meet and interact with new vendors. According to Gay, this tasting event was overwhelmingly popular, with attendance exceeding expectations and extremely positive feedback.
With 50 restaurants and catering services currently available through the district’s e-procurement system, ATG has helped Spring Branch significantly expand the selection of catering options to end-users. The implementation was so successful that the district decided to put all of its catering through ATG beginning in June 2019.
ATG’s customized reports and analytics have provided Gay with powerful data and insights, including the ability to view spend broken down by vendor and by user. This transparency has allowed the district to more effectively target its key goals in a number of areas.
The biggest advantage for Spring Branch has been the time savings associated with developing solicitations, evaluating responses, and ongoing contract management. “Tapping into the benefits available through E&I’s ATG contract is a lifesaver,” said Gay. “It means I can get my end-users what they need much more quickly than if we had to conduct an RFP, handle the integration, and manage the contract on our own.”
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About America To GO
America To Go is an online food ordering and expense management solution that streamlines all of an institution’s restaurants and caterers into one customized platform. This E&I contract helps institutions lower transaction costs through automated billing and payment, automate and enforce catering ordering policies and can easily integrate with any e-procurement system. To learn more about how ATG can help better manage your catering experience, please contact Paul Harris, Portfolio Support Executive – Athletics, Culinary & General Services.