School leaders save time searching for the supplies they need.
An operator of private schools serving infants to adolescents based in Miami, Florida, Endeavor Schools serve nearly 9,000 children in 10 states. Endeavor signed up for Amazon Business to streamline the purchasing process across its 42 schools to enable each school leader to save time and resources with a new, collective procurement approach from a progressive business partner.
Endeavor is passionate about unleashing the individual potential of every child and believes that streamlined back office functions—purchasing included—enable teachers and school staff to focus more time and energy on their education mission. Prior to being acquired by Endeavor, the schools were standalone entities with their own processes for purchasing school supplies. With plans to add several more schools each year, Endeavor began searching for a solution that would give finance a clear line of sight into spending patterns while helping individual schools reduce time and money spent on acquiring supplies. Endeavor signed up for Amazon Business to implement an easy-to-use, cost-effective system.
Endeavor rolled out Amazon Business across all schools. Endeavor is now working through a change management process to ensure all users know how to use Amazon Business, and have a positive experience doing so. With Endeavor school leaders now located in a regional or headquarters facility perhaps hundreds of miles away, a balanced approach is needed that will empower each school while taking advantage of the benefits of being part of a larger organization. Initially, each school director has the ability to build a cart (or allow a teacher to add to one of their carts) and create a purchase order, which is then routed to one of several approvers if it hits a pre-determined financial threshold. Endeavor anticipates providing access to teachers and select administrators in the near future, moving from a paper-based to a fully digital process. Reducing use of personal Amazon.com accounts and corporate or school credit cards will give Endeavor much better visibility into spending patterns than they had before.
“A few months down the road, my hope is that the employees at the schools are ecstatic about all their newfound time, which they can then re-invest in children and their parents,” said Joe O’Connell, Chief Financial Officer.
“As far as enterprise-level software goes, this has been far easier to implement than anything I’ve come across. We were able to deploy across all our schools, from pilot to complete roll out, in about two weeks. I don’t anticipate any challenges adding new schools, either. It’s been a pretty simple process.”
— Michael Raymond, Director of Growth and Integration, Endeavor Schools
The Children’s Garden, a family of Endeavor schools in Oregon, piloted Amazon Business prior to the roll out across all Endeavor Schools. They liked what they found. Their process had been highly manual, with administrators fielding requests from teachers and kitchen staff and sometimes driving to big box stores when supplies weren’t readily available. There was no good way to track purchases and analyze spend, either.
With Amazon Business, teachers now have more control over their orders, it’s easier to review purchase reports class by class, and there are fewer last-minute trips offsite. “The time savings alone has been worth it,” said Nichole Farrar, Executive Director, The Children’s Garden, “and there’s no more frustration over almost-but-not-quite-right orders when someone misinterprets a request for ‘pencils’ as mechanical pencils rather than colored pencils.”
Dr. Amy Brereton, Vice President for Academics on Endeavor’s education team, is piloting the creation of book lists to share recommended curriculum materials with Endeavor’s 42 schools. She can create a central list and easily share recommended books for infants and toddlers. It will dynamically update and create a one-stop, pre-approved shopping list for schools to choose from.
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