Case Study Frankfurt Trade Fair

SAP Integrated External Service Management at the Flick of a Switch

Bild zu FUTURA Case Study Messe Frankfurt

The Frankfurt Trade Fair handles the ordering and billing of its service assignments by using the cloud-based Futura SRM. Thanks to its deep SAP integration, the application accelerates the management of external services and simplifies the work related to billing and auditing processes.

By means of a few numbers Jutta Burckhardt illustrates the importance of service purchasing for the Frankfurt Trade Fair. As the SAP coordinator, Mrs. Burckhardt is working at the interface between the purchasing and the IT department. Approximately 40.000 exhibitors from a wide variety of branches are coming to Frankfurt every year in order to present new products and the newest innovations.

Factor of success: Supplier connection

They must be provided with services like fair stands and their setup, installation of lighting systems, floor fitting in the fair halls, spotlights, signposts for the halls, hostesses or security services – and all that on a surface area of approximately 356,000 sqm and an additional 96,000 sqm of open-air space. As a whole, the procurement of services makes a difference of about 175 millions of Euro every year – in a large part those are unplanned services. There are various reasons for this: some exhibitors suddenly withdraw from their agreement others want a larger fair stand, or more spotlights than originally planned. “We can therefore only plan with rough figures when commissioning”, says Jutta Burckhardt.

Location-independent processing of orders

While procurement department of the Frankfurt Trade Fair was still using a self-made software solution, the handling of orders was complicated and time consuming recollects Mrs. Burkhardt. “Moreover the capacity of the former system was limited”. Since an expansion would have been expensive, Messe Frankfurt opted for FUTURA Solutions whose cloud-based application has been quite convincing: To use the platform, purchasing agents and suppliers need only an internet access and a browser. Users and suppliers, both appreciate the solution’s easy and clearly arranged user interface. Via cloud, suppliers of the Frankfurt Trade Fair can communicate and transact their services online. Thus, one can access orders launched in SAP wherever there’s an internet access via the FUTURA cloud.

The flexible handling of orders and the enormous facilitation of work due to its deep SAP integration were the main reasons for our decision in favor of FUTURA SRM.

For each order, suppliers can enter their activity recordings or the measurement of services rendered online in FUTURA. For this purpose, they refer to the items of their framework contract, which specifies the price for every single service item. Likewise, the contracting authorities in the specialist department can verify and revise the already implemented services and also have them cleared online. Until approval, there can be as many revision loops as necessary.

Expendable auditing

The billing too has been highly simplified and accelerated. “Because the services settled in the framework contract are taken over with fixed prices, only quantity checks have to be made” Mrs. Burkhardt points this out as the great advantage of service management integrated into SAP. This means that the respective specialist department (requester of a service) now only has to check whether the quantity schedules/measurements submitted online are correct, for instance the square meters of fitted floor or the amount of delivered spotlights. As soon as the activity recordings are enabled, corresponding activity entry sheet are being automatically created and conveyed to a credit procedure by the SAP system of the Frankfurt Trade Fair. Suppliers and service providers thus receive their money within a very short period of time – as opposed to earlier, when it took a few weeks because the paperwork had to run through many stations and departments. “This means enormous time saving in the purchasing and billing process” highlights the SAP coordinator.


  • Supplier-Self-Service

    Simple supplier connection by means of automatic onboarding

  • Mobile order processing

    Service providers need only an internet access / Online verification of activity recordings

  • Audit-proof billing and verification process

    Automatic creation of service entry sheet in SAP

  • Accurate reduction of purchase commitments for a better fund release

    Audit is not required / Enabling of a quick credit procedure

Project key data
  • Task Cloud-based management of services with a yearly procurement volume of 175 million of Euros and comprehensive integration into the SAP ERP-system with different modules
  • Solution Implementation of FUTURA® SRM for a cloud-based, mobile order processing and online verification of activity recordings / Enabling of a credit procedure
  • Implementation Roll-out in 2009 / Implementation period 4 weeks
  • Type of trade Trade fair
  • About Messe Frankfurt The largest German fair construction company with 538 million euros in sales (as of 2012) and 1,891 employees worldwide / global network of 28 subsidiaries and around 50 international distribution partners / shareholders are the city of Frankfurt (60 percent) and the state of Hesse (40 percent).
Portraits Hubert Schröder
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Hubert Schröder
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Making short work of procuring and handling construction works and services

No more media breaks in tendering, awarding and billing

Insight on demand – electronic handling of all purchasing processes

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