Perhaps the biggest benefit that Blair and his colleagues at Vacasa get from Amazon Business is its fast, convenient delivery of specialty products from the ordinary to the exotic. “Amazon Business has a supply chain and distribution network that’s unparalleled in the industry,” he says.
That’s a particular help to a company like Vacasa. “We’re a hyper-market-driven organization managing more than 12,000 vacation properties around the world,” says Blair. “We need to deliver a breadth of specialty items and amenities to our owners’ properties and their guests, even when the property is relatively isolated, like a bungalow in Belize, a chalet in Switzerland, or a modern apartment in Czechia. I can’t think of any other supplier that can operate with the reach and scale we need. Having Amazon Business as a resource we can depend on is very important.”
“I can’t think of any other supplier that can operate with the reach and scale we need. Having Amazon Business as a resource we can depend on is very important.”
About 500 general managers across Vacasa access its Amazon Business account. That highly decentralized system runs with a lean team of just five central operations support people in Vacasa’s headquarters in Portland, Oregon. The company performs this remarkable feat with the help of Amazon Business, too.
“Our purchasing has to be decentralized because managers across the country and beyond buy specialty products for unique properties at the direction of the owners—such as a specialty lightbulb for a unique floor lamp,” says Sarah Henderson, supplies specialist at Vacasa. “Because we rely on Amazon Business for fast, on-time shipping of specialty items, we can be more nimble and manage these requests with fewer people here in Portland.”
That wasn’t always the case. Before Vacasa adopted Amazon Business, its general managers were often frustrated by the inability to order specialty products or supplies according to their specific needs, and that inability sometimes created what Blair calls “friction points” with both field teams and guests. Moreover, managers were using hundreds of individual credit cards to make purchases, creating an administrative nightmare.
Now, by putting all authorized users on a single Vacasa account on Amazon Business, Blair says, “We just don’t have as many of those friction points any more and have done away with management challenges. Which means we do a better job for everyone who depends on us.”
Blair and Henderson are looking forward to making that “better job” even better. With more managers making use of Amazon Business for their purchases, Blair and Henderson expect the portion of Vacasa purchasing that’s transacted through Amazon Business to climb from 14 percent to 20 percent over the next year.
And if they ever run out of white sand on that tropical beach, they can reorder that through Amazon Business, too.
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