Optimizing the RFP Process

Introduction – 

The strength of an RFP is its ability to level the playing field, to make explicit what is required, and to find vendors who can prove they are able to deliver. Moreover, the RFP offers a way to cut through the bells and whistles (not to mention the favoritism and cronyism that we all know exist in business) to get to substance and objective truth. In theory, this is wonderful. In practice, however, RFPs tend to be unwieldy beasts for both the procurer and the vendor.

The objective of this report is to provide RFP organizers with a strategic framework, common sense best practices and specific insider tips that will allow RFP organizers to design and conduct RFPs that cut through the bullshit and deliver long-term value to their organizations.

But there is an inherent catch-22 in RFP design. How do you astutely manage an RFP when you don’t know enough about the service you are soliciting? How to you suss out the strengths and weaknesses of potential vendors when you have no deep grounding in the discipline to begin with? How to get what you want when you may not truly know what you need (especially when some vendors are perfectly content to lead you down a primrose path of fragrant flowers touting the importance of their particular varietals while never taking the time to understand your landscape and growth objectives)?

Information contained in this report:

  1. TL;DR – Executive Summary
  2. Evaluating purpose and commitment
  3. Managing the process
  4. Writing it up
  5. Evaluating responses
  6. Summary

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