Request for Proposal (RFP)
How did Microsoft get a $22 billion contract with the Army? They answered a request for proposal. How can you receive the best possible requests for your business? This presentation includes customizable Request for Proposal (RFP) templates that will guide you through every step of the proposal process, from setting expectations to evaluation and scoring. On average, a public sector RFP is one hundred and sixteen pages long, while a resulting proposal is one hundred and forty four pages long. Responses to RFPs take companies a lot of time and effort, so creating RFPs that are well written and concise is a sign of respect that will attract high-quality vendors and minimize wait times so your projects can get done sooner. Use these templates to trim the fat on your RFPs and drive home the most important aspects of your project and the goals that need to be met, so that vendors know your expectations and can plan accordingly.
Deliverables and expectations
It's important to define your project goals and needs upfront. What are the key deliverables, and what does your organization expect? Provide a brief project overview, including strategies, important team members, the cost, and the budget. Be sure to refer to this chart while you work on the rest of the RFP to ensure it contains all the key information to your project. (Slide 6)
Equally important are the qualifications that the bidders must have. Present this list to bidders so they know what documentation or other proof of experience to provide to your organization. This proof may come in the form of a physical or digital certificate, which can be specified in the list. This is a great way to assess core competencies and filter out bidders who may not have the qualifications necessary to complete the project. (Slide 12)
Evaluation and scoring
Provide a scoring breakdown so bidders know exactly what you want. This scoring system helps both the bidders and the evaluators get on a level playing field and leads to a streamlined evaluation process. When bidders know in advance that they will be scored on whether their proposals are formatted correctly, it incentivizes them to make proposals in the format you request, which speeds up evaluation. Scores can be separated according to the round they take place in. Many proposals go through up to four rounds of scoring. (Slide 14)
Here is where bidders can provide their cost breakdowns. This template can be supplied as an example within the RFP. This is where the literal bidding happens and potential vendors lay out their finances over the project lifespan. Each row is a separate deliverable, and the chart lets you quickly compare proposal costs between bidders. (Slide 18)
Bidders should know the key deadlines of the RFP process, such as submission due dates and when the review process will end. Make sure deadlines leave enough time for vendors to plan a response, and the more detailed your RFP is, the more time you should give them. (Slide 20)
RFPs should establish a clear vision for a potential partnership, from implementation to ongoing support. And remember: you can download and customize this RFP presentation for all your proposal needs to save time and hours of work. Now, go check out our Project Plan presentation for the tools to build a project plan, with additional slides and insights on how to incorporate costs and timelines into your RFP.