FAQ

Procurement & sourcing

We thought you might have a few questions. Hopefully, the answers below will help explain tealbook® and what it can do for your business.

Still have a question? Please contact us if we can help in any way.

  • What is tealbook?

    tealbook is the only online comprehensive supplier knowledge management platform. tealbook contains up-to-date, credible information from suppliers so teams can instantly identify qualified suppliers for each specific need and collaborate with stakeholders on supplier information and searches. tealbook is easy to implement, use, and integrate with your other tools and systems. In early 2016, tealbook expanded significantly by incorporating data from Dun & Bradstreet’s commercial database. This allows our subscribers to instantly access information and intelligence on over a million suppliers and identify qualified suppliers able to meet their business needs. tealbook, as powered by D&B, combines supplier information, financial risk data, and aggregate industry intelligence to improve and accelerate supplier discovery.

  • How does tealbook fit among my tools and systems?

    tealbook was built to easily integrate with all systems and tools that are open to integration such as ERP systems, contract management, spend management, esourcing, and more. tealbook converts your supplier master list into an evolving, collective source of supplier intelligence and accessible information.

  • What does tealbook replace?

    After implementing tealbook, you will no longer be dependent upon Excel sheets, supplier profiles in static portals, and time consuming (and sometimes expensive) sources of supplier intelligence such as reports, publications, trade shows, internet searches, and more. tealbook also centralizes internal supplier intelligence so you don’t have to run around the hallways or stake out the water cooler to get internal partners’ and peers’ supplier insight and recommendations on suppliers.

  • How easy is tealbook to integrate with my other tools

    tealbook aims to be easy to integrate with other tools and systems so we can be everyone’s trusted supplier intelligence, discovery, and identification partner. As long as others are open to connecting, we are open to integrating.

  • What does tealbook integrate with?

    ERP systems, spend management systems, esourcing tools, contract management systems, portals, and more.

  • Who can have access to tealbook?

    Subscribers are closely monitored to maintain the integrity of the collective intelligence.

  • Who subscribes to tealbook?

    Procurement implements, maintains, and shares insight on suppliers through their corporate tealbook account. Procurement may choose to deploy tealbook across the organization and allow other employees to download and use the tealbook app to store, access and share supplier connections, relationships and experience. Procurement may also choose to enable other employees to initiate the supplier discovery process prior to initiating an RFP.

  • What is a VET?


    
A VET - or Validation Expertise Tool - VET allows clients to instantly identify suppliers that best meet their requirements. Recommendations are provided based on suppliers that have matching requirements in their profile and reinforced by subscriber tags. Existing suppliers and suppliers connected to colleagues are prioritized. Subscribers also have the opportunity to receive instant recommendations from suppliers outside of their network that also meet their requirements.

  • What supplier info does tealbook centralize?

    tealbook centralizes supplier-shared information such as: Company name, Contact information, Product or Service offerings, a brief capabilities presentation, social media feeds, diversity status and certification forms, public client recommendations, and aggregated intelligence from industry peers.

    tealbook also centralizes proprietary client supplier intelligence: Vendor master, preferred suppliers list, other supplier status listings (such as ‘restricted’ or ‘do not use’), legal status (MSA, CDA) and optional secure contract upload, relationships with internal colleagues, shared notes, VET* (including recommendations, selected suppliers, response progress, supplier responses, internal employee feedback, and more.)

  • What information is shared with members outside of my company?

    Only the supplier tags are shared, and those are only shared in aggregate.

  • What information is proprietary to me and my company?

    Vendor master, preferred supplier list, other status (such as ‘restricted’ or ‘do not use’), legal status (MSA, CDA) and optional secure contract upload, relationships with internal colleagues, shared notes, VET (including recommendations, selected suppliers, response progress, supplier responses, internal employee feedback, and more.)

  • Who updates each supplier profile?

    Each supplier is responsible for updating their profile. tealbook is an intuitive platform that allows suppliers to manage their own profile easily. The more subscribers join tealbook, the more incentive suppliers have to maintain their information. Subscribers can also prompt suppliers to update their profile.

  • Who maintains the data?

    tealbook is a highly scalable platform. The data is maintained by continuous collective intelligence from subscribers. Suppliers can be reported by subscribers, which allows the data to be self policed by the industry. Internal data can be integrated with systems and tools that automate updates such as contract status.

  • Where does the data come from?

    Dun & Bradstreet has provided tealbook with instant intelligence on over a million suppliers. Additionally, all tealbook subscribers upload their vendor master into tealbook, instantly injecting intelligence based on suppliers’ connections to each subscribing company.

    Suppliers are invited (by subscribers) to validate and update their profile, adding accuracy to their data. Each tealbook subscriber adds ongoing intelligence from procurement and internal partners. The tealbook app is an additional easy way to collect valuable intelligence on suppliers directly from the source. This aggregated intelligence adds valuable data to tealbook’s algorithm so that instant supplier recommendations are accurate.

  • What is the process to implement?

    tealbook is very easy to implement.

    • The vendor master is quickly uploaded into your new corporate account
    • Our team will provide you with a brief walk through and training
    • You can start building your tealbook and add your intelligence

    *configurations and integrations will vary the level of implementation required.

  • What is the process to identify current suppliers?

    VET allows subscribers to receive recommendations prioritizing their company’s existing and collective list of suppliers. Preferred suppliers are made highly visible.

  • What is the process to identify new suppliers?

    VET also allows subscribers to access industry recommendations outside of their own corporate tealbook by clicking on the corresponding tab.

  • How is procurement connected to internal partners during a search?

    As soon as a VET is saved, an email invitation to collaborate is sent to procurement and strategic sourcing colleagues inviting them to collaborate.

  • How are recommendations provided?

    Recommendations appear instantly once subscribers enter their criteria/keywords. The list of recommendations gets filtered as more keywords are entered, giving users the flexibility to receive high level or precisely targeted supplier recommendations.

  • How are suppliers prioritized when recommended?

    tealbook uses the most trusted sources of collective supplier intelligence - D&B codes, supplier verified information, and client tags - to populate and prioritize supplier recommendations. Peer trends and tags are most important and are prioritized accordingly.

  • What is the difference between suppliers that subscribe to my community and ones that don't?

    Suppliers that subscribe to your community have indicated that they are interested and qualified to support your business needs. Non subscribed suppliers might have a conflict of interest, are not interested in doing business with your company, or simply are not suited for your needs or industry.

  • Can I see all suppliers?

    You can see all of your suppliers and preferred suppliers. Administrative users (typically in procurement) have instant visibility across their entire supplier base and suppliers added by internal colleagues. If users want to see more suppliers, they can use VETs to receive targeted recommendations from their entire company’s tealbook supplier list or their entire industry.

  • Can I invite suppliers who don't subscribe?

    Yes, but there might be a delay in their response, as they will need to subscribe to your community before they can see your VET and respond.

  • Can I invite suppliers that are recommended?

    Of course! Once you save your VET and add the mandatory details about your search, you can build your supplier list out as much as you like.

  • How is a VET initiated?

    Once you are ready to invite suppliers to a VET, an email will be sent to your collaborators and administrative user(s) for review and input. Once approved, the invitation to suppliers will be sent.

  • How long does it take to receive responses to a VET?

    Suppliers can instantly accept or decline the invitation to participate in a VET. Notifications will be sent to collaborators. Suppliers who accept will have a minimum of 3 business days to upload their 10 slide response that includes their business case based on the VET’s requirements.

SUPPLIERS

We thought you might have a few questions. Hopefully, the answers below will help explain tealbook® and what it can do for your business.

Still have a question? Please contact us if we can help in any way.

  • What is tealbook?

    tealbook allows suppliers to manage ONE easy to update profile for both existing and potential customers. That profile builds valuable aggregated intelligence for suppliers through endorsements from their clients. The combination of one profile and industry-wide intelligence increases the speed of decision making and increases the accuracy of the discovery process - ultimately reducing the cost of business development for suppliers.

  • Are subscribers using tealbook to connect to their existing suppliers?

    Absolutely. Most of the solutions that store supplier information are static; information is added once and then it sits and ages. But in tealbook, information becomes intelligence through constantly updated social media feeds, internal knowledge, and aggregate industry intelligence.

  • Are subscribers using tealbook to find new suppliers?

    Yes again! Subscribers searching in tealbook are looking for additional suppliers of the products and services that will meet their business needs.

  • How do they identify new suppliers?

    When a subscriber wants to find a new supplier, they search for and receive instant recommendations based upon their keywords as well as their own internal knowledge and supplier information.

  • What is included in my profile?

    There are a lot of opportunities to differentiate your company and its offerings through one easy to maintain tealbook profile. You may choose to include the following in your profile:

    • 10 keywords that quickly summarize your company and its offerings
    • Your company’s logo
    • A paragraph that describes your company
    • A short capabilities presentation
    • Points of contact and their information
    • The basics - locations, years in business, number of employees, revenue
    • Diversity status, self certification forms, and expiration date
    • Your offerings (services/products) as granular as you want to provide. Every keyword counts and will allow subscribers to find you!
    • Additional opportunities to describe what sets your company apart
    • Your social media feeds

    Subscribers can also see:

    • Their colleagues’ relationships with your company
    • Your legal status (MSA/CDA) with their company
    • Internal shared notes
    • Aggregated tags used by other clients representing what you are mostly known for [learn more about monitoring clients tags]
  • Why is there already information in my profile?

    tealbook has partnered with Dun & Bradstreet to bring a broad range of companies into tealbook. You have the ability to add to or edit any of the information included in your profile. Your customers might have also provided information that has been added to your profile.

  • Why should I maintain my profile?

    The more current the information, the more closely it will reflect your product and service offerings. Since subscribers will search using keywords that reflect their needs, you should provide as much relevant information as possible to ensure your company can be easily found by subscribers. If you are recommended, subscribers will base their decision to reach out to you on the information you provided, your latest news, information, social media feeds, etc.

  • What are client tags?

    Subscribers tag suppliers as a way to filter their own tealbook account and easily find suppliers again based on their services or product offerings. When subscribers add your company to their tealbook, they are required to choose a minimum of 3 new or pre populated tags to describe your company. Tags accumulate on your public profile and give perspective to other subscribers based on what your company is best known for. Subscriber tags are weighted the heaviest in tealbook’s algorithm to provide instant trusted recommendations when clients are using VET. Deciding to monitor your tags allows you to see what keywords they are using to describe your services or product offerings. It also allows you to remove tags that don’t represent your company appropriately. Supplier removed tags will be removed from your public profile but will stay on that client’s tealbook. [Learn more monitoring client tags]

  • Why should I monitor my tags?

    You may find that some of your offerings or capabilities are not reflected by your current tags, and, over time, some tags may no longer be relevant. Since tags provide one of the key ways for subscribers to you, it is in your best interests for them to accurately represent your value proposition. [subscribe to monitor your tags]

  • How can I use tealbook to generate more visibility?

    Subscribing to a community indicates that you are interested in doing business with similar types of companies. As tealbook grows, the communities will become more granular, giving you more flexibility to indicate which companies you are most interested in growing your business with. Subscribing to a community will enable you to view invited VETs and instantly respond based on your level of interest.

    You can also increase your visibility by being connected to as many clients as possible and accumulating tags that represent what you do best. Maintaining your profile, adding your social media feeds, and adding the tealbook badge to your email signature will increase your profile’s visibility as well.

  • Can I reach out or ask clients to be added to their tealbook?

    Absolutely! But you can’t do it through tealbook just yet. Asking your clients to become tealbook subscribers or adding your profile to their existing tealbook directly is a great way to increase the credibility of your profile and generate new business leads.

  • What is the cost of subscribing to tealbook communities?

    Some clients can invite you to subscribe to their community at no cost. If you are interested in gaining visibility to other similar companies, you can subscribe to each additional community for a monthly fee. Communities are bundles of companies with similar characteristics,( i.e. the lifescience community). The fee of each community depends on the number of companies included. [subscribe to a community]

  • Why should I subscribe?

    Subscribing to a community indicates to clients that you are interested in being considered for new business opportunities. Clients will have visibility into suppliers that have subscribed (or not) and will likely select suppliers that have proactively indicated an interest in doing business to avoid delays.

  • What happens if I don't subscribe to a community?

    You will not be able to view and respond to VETs initiated by companies in the community.

  • What is VET?

    A VET - or Validation Expertise Tool - VET allows subscribers to instantly identify suppliers that best meet their requirements. Recommendations are provided based on suppliers that have matching requirements in their profile and are reinforced by subscriber tags. Existing suppliers, and suppliers connected to colleagues, are prioritized. Subscribers also have the opportunity to receive instant recommendations from suppliers outside of their network that also meet their requirements.

  • How will I know I have received a VET?

    The administrators of your profile will receive an email notification with a link to your tealbook profile. A list of VETs will also be visible on your tealbook dashboard.

  • How do I respond?

    You will respond by first accepting or declining. If you accept, you will develop and upload a 10 slide presentation that demonstrates your business case based on the requirements described in the VET and submit it directly through tealbook.

  • What should I focus my short presentation on?

    Please focus on the requirements provided by the subscriber! You may want to include case studies or other factual information that lets the subscriber’s decision making team best understand why you believe you are the best partner to support their business needs.

  • How do I upload it?

    You upload the presentation under the VET section of your profile.

  • Who will see my response?

    The entire subscriber team that is collaborating on the VET will be able to see your presentation.

  • How will I know if I have been selected or not?

    Subscribers are reminded to provide a selection in tealbook and add feedback if applicable. The selection and feedback will be emailed to you as well as showing up in your tealbook dashboard. If selected, next steps will be shared.

  • Does tealbook replace an RFP tool?

    No. tealbook is NOT an RFP tool. Subscribers will use tealbook to identify and validate the strongest candidates, but this does not replace the RFP process. Once validated, subscribers may use their own RFP tools or process.

INTERNAL PARTNERS

We thought you might have a few questions. Hopefully, the answers below will help explain tealbook® and what it can do for your business.

Still have a question? Please contact us if we can help in any way.

  • What is Tealbook?

    tealbook is the only online comprehensive supplier knowledge management platform. tealbook contains up-to-date, credible information from suppliers so teams can instantly identify qualified suppliers for each specific need and collaborate with stakeholders on supplier information and searches. tealbook is easy to implement, use, and integrate with your other tools and systems. In early 2016, tealbook expanded significantly by incorporating data from Dun & Bradstreet’s commercial database. This allows our subscribers to instantly access information and intelligence on over a million suppliers and identify qualified suppliers able to meet their business needs. tealbook, as powered by D&B, combines supplier information, financial risk data, and aggregate industry intelligence to improve and accelerate supplier discovery.

  • Why did my company subscribe to tealbook?

    The main reason companies subscribe to tealbook is to access, share and build supplier information across the organization as well as benefitting from the aggregate intelligence of others in the industry. Anyone who has contact with suppliers, or has a vested interest in making sure their company selects the best suppliers, can add to and benefit from tealbook. Each subscribing company can centralize their opinions about suppliers in tealbook to make sure it gets saved and is easily accessible for others in the company. In addition, some companies may use tealbook to manage their preferred supplier lists, including suppliers with MSAs and CDAs in place. If your internal processes allow, you may be able to use this information to make purchases with suppliers without following a new selection process.

  • How can I use tealbook?

    tealbook is very easy to set up. You can find the app on the ITunes Store under tealbook.

  • Should I accept the request to access my contacts? Why?

    Accessing your contacts allows your tealbook to quickly include all of your supplier connections. It has never been easier to store and find your suppliers by searching by name or by offering.

  • How can I use tealbook to access my company's supplier information?

    You can view your own supplier connections and your company’s preferred supplier list from your dashboard. If you are looking for additional recommendations, you can start a VET and receive instant supplier recommendations prioritizing your company’s and colleagues’ supplier connections.

  • How can I use tealbook to identify suppliers?

    tealbook makes it easy to quickly identify the right suppliers for your business needs. Using our innovative Validation Expertise Tool, or VET, you can input your criteria and requirements for each project and VET will instantly provide a list of recommended suppliers.

  • Who recommends suppliers?

    Subscribers can provide public recommendations, in the form of tags, that will be posted on a supplier’s profile once they have been approved by the supplier.

  • Who maintains the supplier profile?

    One thing that makes tealbook unique is that supplier profiles are maintained by the suppliers themselves, ensuring that the information is always up to date.

  • Who tags suppliers?

    When suppliers complete their tealbook profile, they are required to choose a minimum of 3 new or pre populated tags to describe what their company is known for. Subscriber tags accumulate on a supplier’s public profile and give perspective to other subscribers based on what the supplier is best known for. Subscriber tags are weighted the heaviest by tealbook’s algorithm to provide instant trusted recommendations.

  • What is a VET?

    A VET - or Validation Expertise Tool - allows clients to instantly identify suppliers that best meet their requirements. Recommendations are provided based on suppliers that have matching requirements in their profile and are reinforced by subscriber tags. Existing suppliers and suppliers connected to colleagues are prioritized. Subscribers also have the opportunity to receive instant recommendations from suppliers outside of their network that also meet their requirements.

  • Who sees VETs?

    Subscribers can invite their internal colleagues to collaborate on a VET. Procurement is always included as they usually administer tealbook. Once the list of suppliers is selected and approved, collaborators will receive notifications throughout the process so they can monitor progress and supplier responses. Once responses have been uploaded by suppliers, collaborators are able to view the responses and add feedback that is available to the rest of their team. Suppliers who have been invited to participate in a particular VET may choose to accept or decline the invitation. They can review the requirements and upload their response, but do not have visibility to the collaboration in tealbook about their proposal beyond that point.

  • How do suppliers respond to a VET?

    Suppliers respond by developing a 10 slide presentation tailored to the requirements identified by the client. The presentation should focus on building a strong business case for being selected. The slides are uploaded as images in VET and can be viewed by clients involved in the process.

  • How long does the process take?

    The process of identifying suppliers is instant upon entering requirements. Each supplier’s decision to accept or decline takes just a few minutes and they have a minimum of 3 days to upload their response.