InfoWeb is one of the largest internal LOB applications at Microsoft. It is a worldwide portal infrastructure that includes more than 450 Office SharePoint Server sites and more than 40,000 unique visitors each month. Microsoft consultants, account managers, sales representatives, marketing managers, and other employees who work with Microsoft customers and partners use InfoWeb as the primary source of sales, marketing, and services information.
To streamline proposal processes, Microsoft IT developed Global Proposal Exchange (GPX) three years ago. This solution was based on Windows SharePoint Services. The solution helped Microsoft Public Service Bid teams in the United States and Canada to standardize proposal creation processes. Yet, the solution was based on custom code and did not reach other Microsoft teams that also create business proposals.
To replace GPX with a comprehensive solution for managing proposal life cycles, available company wide to all Microsoft employees concerned with proposals, Microsoft IT created a proposal center within the Microsoft InfoWeb infrastructure. InfoWeb Proposal Center is based on Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 and uses standard components readily available in the 2007 Microsoft Office system.
Similar systems can be built for Retail processes as well especially for automating and streamlining communications between Retailers and Suppliers.