How allowances drive employee happiness and smoother orders

AmeriCommerce by, b2b portal, b2b ecommerce, credit, points

Supplying apparel and equipment to customers can be a bit of a circus if their procurement process isn’t optimized or streamlined. Let’s say a worker requests a new uniform. This request has to go through multiple administrative hoops before the order finally makes it to you, the supplier—and that doesn’t include the time it takes to make and ship the item.

It’s a clunky chain of tasks that slows down customer orders and complicates fulfillment. Fortunately, there’s a better way: using credits or points, as an allowance.

How do credits work in internal employee stores?

For this credit-based solution to work, you’ll need a B2B portal that can be leveraged as a shopping card and can use points or credits as currency. Platforms like AmeriCommerce by have been successfully adapted to this purpose, with a reward points system that can be utilized in many ways, such as credits or an allowance.

Reward points, b2b portals, b2b ecommerce

Using an enterprise platform like AmeriCommerce by, you can easily build a tailored portal for a customer (complete with branding) and load it with the necessary SKUs, such as uniforms, tools, devices, or office supplies. Each SKU is then assigned a point value (ex. 20 points for a company shirt), and each employee is given a point allocation with which they can order replacement equipment. These credits can either be awarded to the employee in one go as part of their work allowance, or automatically renewed on a recurring basis. It depends on the business, what supplies or equipment they use, and how fast an employee is expected to use them up.

It’s a flexible and paperless system that can revolutionize how a customer manages their equipment. Let’s explore the benefits in more detail:

Credits simplify the product request process

Form-based equipment requests are prone to delays and mismanagement. In this credit-based system, an employee would simply log into the ordering portal, find the equipment they need, and then purchase it the same way they’d do it on any other shopping site.

If the employee has enough points, and is buying a benign item (that is, one that isn’t restricted), then the request gets sent straight to the supplier (you) for fulfillment. If the item is restricted in some way, or if the process requires an additional layer of review, then this purchase request appears on a manager’s dashboard, where it can be reviewed and approved.

This shopping-style system is fast, quick, and easy and allows even more control for an employee’s manager or franchise owner. No need to fill out a paper form or submit an Excel sheet, and the process requires little to no training, as long as the employee is logged in and has the proper permissions.

Better accountability

“But wait,” you ask. What’s to stop an employee from going wild on the portal and ordering things willy-nilly?

Limitations are built into the system to prevent abuse. The points allocation is one of them. Every employee is given a set number of points, and you can “price” the items on the company storefront in such a way that prevents employees from buying too many at a time. For example, company-branded caps are small and easy to produce in bulk, so it makes sense to assign them a much lower point value than a set of branded overalls.

Single-sign on allows employees to be auto-logged into the store if they’re already using a work account on the same device. While convenient for the user, this also means managers can easily match purchases with buyers if any purchases need to come under scrutiny. Also, management has the option to review all requests before the orders are finalized.

Credits provide greater control and flexibility

In addition to being easy to use and to manage, the credit-based system is also adaptable to special circumstances. For example, if an employee urgently needs an item and doesn’t have the points for it, their supervisor can easily edit the number of credits the employee currently has through a manager-only interface.

AmeriCommerce by, manage reward points, b2b portal

Systems like AmeriCommerce by also have a recurring point system where an individual’s points are reset to a specific value at the beginning of a specific period—let’s say 500 points a month. These points can also be set to expire in a “use it or lose it” system, to lessen the risk of point hoarding.

Items that are frequently used together (like a kit that includes gloves, helmet, overalls, and boots) can be grouped together as a single item for easy purchasing by an employee. Each component item can still be purchased and tracked separately for more accurate metrics and fulfillment.

If any items are on backorder, or are running low, the portal manager can disable certain items from being ordered until stock is replenished.

Finances are easier to manage

The employee-facing checkout system can be handled separately from the relationship with the vendor/supplier. This gives you the freedom to set up whatever payment structure you want for this credits-based system, such as:

  • Monthly payments
  • Purchase items in advance and list stocks accordingly
  • Pay-to-order

It all depends on what makes the most sense for the customer and how they manage their assets. The good thing is that platforms like AmeriCommerce by are robust enough to be able to handle a variety of payment arrangements between a supplier and a B2B customer.

Getting insights through purchase data

The B2B portal can help generate an enormous amount of sales intelligence. With this digital checkout system, you can identify the most in-demand items, how frequently they need to be restocked, and which departments need them the most.

Employers can also use the data to track their own employee’s spending habits. Purchases are tied to individual employees, so they can see who is buying what, when they’re buying it, and (if management reviews the request) why they bought it.

If you’re interested in learning more about our B2B ecommerce portal and using credits, reach out to one of our digital commerce experts and see how we can help.