RFP – Request for Proposal Archives

Most of your business associates are likely aware of the term RFP and what it stands for. They might not understand how it is used by purchasing professionals, however they should know it is a formal procurement document sent out to solicit responses from other businesses or suppliers.

The RFP document is a Request for Proposal form and a company would typically opt to send it out to three or more vendors or suppliers. When issued, it is expected the vendors or suppliers you decide to select or include are qualified to generate a desired response to the Buyer’s needs.

A qualified vendor is often:

1. A supplier you have done business with before
2. One you recently pre-qualified using a formal process
3. They come recommended from other business associates or
4. Have client references you can check

Always narrow your vendor list down to supplier’s you know will submit a quality product and service. It is not considered a best practice to submit requests to vendors which may provide a sub-standard service or poor quality product.

Much is at stake when making a selection Read the rest of this entry

Request For Proposals Explained

A request for proposal is a solicitation often made through a bidding process by a company or agency interested in acquiring a service, commodity or asset from a supplier. This document is intended to provoke potential suppliers to submit proposals for the supply of the requested items. An RFP is normally submitted in the early stages of the procurement cycle either at the procurement or at the preliminary study stage and dictates the preliminary requirements for the service or commodity being requested and may also prescribe, to some extent, the exact format and structure the supplier should respond to the request.

Effective request for proposals will typically reflect the plan and long/short term objectives of the business; providing a detailed insight through which the supplier is able to offer a corresponding reply to the request. This form of request is quite similar to a request for information and a request for quotation.

Principally, a request for proposals will:
•    Inform the supplier that the organization is looking to purchase services or goods from them and encourages them to Read the rest of this entry

Should you tender your freight transportation requirements and if so how do you generate a RFP to cover this vital piece of your business? Like it or not your transportation service provider is an arm or is part of your business. Picking the right vendor to move your product to and from your business should garner more attention from the purchasing department than what it typically does.

Many organizations just go with the company that has always managed their freight and often very little due diligence has been completed to determine the most suitable carrier for their business. Poor quality service for incoming freight can hurt or shutdown your business if it is not delivered on time and in one piece. If your goods are sensitive to the environment you will want to do everything you can to mitigate liabilities and show due diligence in the event you are included in a legal battle as to who was and is responsible for the goods while in transit. Good article here on FOB Points.

On our arterial roads and highways, the trucking industry moves million of tons of merchandise daily. It is truly one of the largest and most important industries to our economy. The scope or significance of this industry is staggering and yet many companies do not give it a second thought or serious consideration when it comes to who they should partner with. Part of this might be the buyers uncertainty on how to tender or quote this service.

To properly quote your freight requirements your RFP should include a section which provides the bidders a good picture of the amount and type of freight you move in any given year or twelve (12) month period.

EXAMPLE:

The estimated annual LTL (Less than Truckload) tonnage is Read the rest of this entry

The RFP checklist for the Buyer will differ from the checklist a Vendor would use when they are responding to your proposal. The Buyer will focus on the scope of work detail, compliance, selection criteria and commercial pieces. The Vendor may want to include related success stories or work history as part of their response and a third checklist might be one provided by the Buyer which is often called a proposal checklist or a list of items they want to be included in a supplier response. Seasoned Vendors will pay close particular attention to this checklist.

Confused? Let us elaborate – we have the Buyer checklist (1), proposal checklist supplied by buyer for the vendor (2) and last we have the supplier or offeror’s checklist (3).

  1. Buyer checklist: The owner of the RFP will have a checklist which they will use to ensure they have included all necessary components for the document to be considered sound. Some of these necessary components would be a Scope of Work, Technical Requirements, Project Timelines, Budget, Business Requirements, Regulatory and Environmental Requirements, Selection Criteria, Submission Timetable and others.
  2. Proposal checklist: As a buyer or as the owner of the RFP we recommend you include a checklist of deliverables for your suppliers. Bidders will find this beneficial as it will ensure they do not miss providing any of the required information in their bids. Typically this checklist will form part of the owners evaluation matrix and as a vendor you want to make sure there are check marks in these columns. To win your business, be clear as to what you expect them to include with their RFP response. Some items on a proposal checklist might include – Completed Bid Form, Bidder Qualifications, Staff or Project Personnel CV, References, Company Profile, and necessary Insurance Coverage.
  3. Vendor or Offeror checklist: As a Vendor you will have your own checklist of items you will want to include with your RFP response to help you improve your chances at being awarded the bid. Some items on your checklist might include – Did we use the forms provided? Did we respond to all items in the RFP and in any Addenda? Did we follow the format required in the RFP? Who are the contacts? Are there any meetings we are required to attend? Is our insurance and work coverage policies current? Nothing more embarrassing than providing expired documentation. These are just some points to consider.

If you are looking for a sample RFP checklist Read the rest of this entry

There are many variations of RFP Templates available in the on-line marketplace, in fact there are about as many sample RFP Templates as there are subjects. For every type of material or service which is offered, or which you can imagine, someone has likely issued or created a request for proposal for it. RFP Templates.org has developed many templates from years of actual working experience in the materials management field and we understand how much fun it is to generate a RFP from scratch.

RFP45 is a version or a sample template used for the procurement of custom software.

Section 1 – Instructions to Vendors on how and when to respond to your proposal. A must in any request for proposal document.

Project timetable which identifies the key dates or schedule of events as to how you the Buyer anticipate they will take unfold.. Issue date, RFP required by date, vendor meeting dates, award, delivery of software, testing period and implementation. A timeline is important for both parties as it will help ensure it does not come off the rails.

Section 2 – Firm Overview – will allow bidders to understand more about the Buyers background, key business drivers and how the software will function in the company environment. Read the rest of this entry

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