How the Colorado Department of Transportation Got Faster, Leaner, and Greener
The responsibilities of the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) are as diverse and challenging as the terrain of the state itself. In addition to maintaining a 23,000-mile latticework of highways, they plow snow from 6 million lanes of roadway each year, maintain 3,500 bridges, and monitor 278 avalanche paths. This is all done with systems in place for protecting the environment. Additionally, CDOT provides intelligent transportation systems for high-speed rail and aeronautics.
Robert Corman is the procurement director for the Colorado Department of Transportation. He said when he arrived from the private sector the goal for CDOT was to continue to cover all transportation needs for the state of Colorado, while simplifying its IT landscape, bringing seven disparate systems together into one agency. In addition to creating a more collaborative environment through this simplification effort, goals for CDOT operations included extracting customer information, accessing real-time data, and viewing spend analysis.
In order to succeed, CDOT needed one comprehensive solution for facilitating critical transportation services. The department had to be able to respond rapidly to situations, provide real-time traveler information, offer transparent 24×7 status on bids, and more.
“We took a very archaic system and streamlined it into one efficient process where we now have an end-to-end solution for procurement and contracts for the state of Colorado,” says Corman. “We’re also now better able to interact with the vendor community, since they can submit their requests for proposals through one system.”
Corman believes that with the implementation of the SAP Supplier Relationship Management (SAP SRM) and SAP Extended Procurement, public sector and regulated industries extension packages, CDOT was finally able to integrate their myriad of services together. Since CDOT now has a centralized repository within the records management system, there has also been an environmental impact as well due to the dramatic reduction of paper files.
Additionally, with the implementation of the vendor self-service module, CDOT went from seven disparate systems down to just one. Now all available bidding opportunities are continually transparent to the vendor community and requests can now be submitted electronically. Vendors are also able to receive push notices on future procurement transactions with the state.
One of the biggest benefits has been enabling everyday people to see where in the process their transportation-related requests are. In the past, residents would have to sort through multiple websites from different agencies to find what they needed, and there were no options for tracking applications. Today residents of Colorado are empowered with access to a one-stop CDOT Web site where they can see everything related to their account any time of day.
Corman added, “Choosing SAP SRM and SAP Extended Procurement was the right decision for the Colorado Department of Transportation. Not only did we come in on budget and on time, but we also had a very thoughtful implementation and training, with the SAP support staff at our side. Now we can actually concentrate on what we consider our most important mission – serving our customers while bringing more value to the state.”
“We had such a complex system and now it’s so much easier. I’m no longer going home at night worrying about what’s going on in the office,” says Corman. “I actually now have the time to spend riding my bike around the trails of Denver.”
Indeed Denver is a paradise for bike trails. And thanks to CDOT, Corman has over 85 well-kept miles of bike trails that connect to hundreds of miles of mountain bike trails to explore.