An extensive feasibility study involving consultation with all major Builder’s Merchants and some of the larger suppliers of building materials confirmed that the foundation for successful e-Business is good quality data.
To address this requirement the Builder’s Merchants Federation launched the e-Xact Online Service in September 1999. A DETR development grant was awarded in recognition of e-Xact’s potential to provide major efficiency improvements and cost savings in the construction sector.
Since the launch, the day to day management and development of the service, in the hands of S&J Management Services, has resulted in a steady growth in the number of manufacturers and merchant users.
Today there are around 130 subscribing suppliers and over 3,000 Builder’s Merchants Branches with access to browse the catalogue. The service is strongly supported by a number of the large Nationals (Burdens, Jewson, Grafton, BSS/PTS, Travis Perkins and CBA Group) and many of the smaller independent merchants e.g. Romerils, Normans and Codebuild.
The success of the service can be attributed to a number of things:-
The development of a standard format for product information, which in turn enables automation of product file updates, means greater speed, big cost savings, greater accuracy and better use of staff time. The future for e-Xact is focussed on extending the concept, growing the user base, building the data content and maintaining its position as the catalogue provider for all who want to benefit from electronic trading.