Cover: Internet Reverse Auctions: Valuable Tool In Experienced Hands

Internet Reverse Auctions: Valuable Tool In Experienced Hands

Published 2002

by Vincent A. Mabert, Jack A. Skeels

Purchase Print Copy

Add to Cart Paperback7 pages Free

In a dynamic global economy, effectively managing the procurement process to help cut costs is critical to long-term success. Many firms have recently adopted Internet-based reverse auction tools and techniques for purchasing materials and services from their suppliers. In a reverse auction, the buyer takes on the role of seller by advertising its intent to purchase a specific quantity of an item or service, and providers bid for the business. As a result, prices descend rather than ascend as they would in a traditional auction. Reaction to the concept has been mixed, including both spectacular statements of success and concerns about applicability to the total procurement function. The authors present actual case studies that illustrate the tasks required to conduct a reverse auction, the third-party aid available, and the potential benefits.

Research conducted by

Originally published in: Business Horizons, v. 45, no. 4, July-August 2002, pp. 70-76.

This report is part of the RAND reprint series. The Reprint was a product of RAND from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.