An RFP (request for proposal) is an important document required to initiate business transactions between enterprises. It’s generally drafted to illustrate a comprehensive range of services required, along with scope of work, tools necessary, and resources leveraged. Every RFP offers as much information about the organization as possible to promote a more process-oriented onboarding experience.

With clear goals highlighted, vendors offer proposals to demonstrate their abilities to fulfill order requests from clients. They’re especially important when sourcing a cybersecurity professional or reviewing companies for setting up a surveillance camera system for your assets. The document itself highlights the specific needs of the organization, as well as introduces clarity through the bidding process

Detailing the complete scope of work

A quality RFP should highlight the complete scope of work required from the vendor being sourced. The document should focus on capturing the depth of the work required, rather than simply filling pages of material.

Additionally, an RFP should cover the essential nature of work required, as well as the team structure necessary. Whether a sophisticated level of expertise is required, or a larger team size for execution is necessary, should be highlighted independently of the company’s objectives.

Clarity in goals and objectives

RFPs should introduce clarity into the bidding process, as well as illuminate the requirements from the vendors. The clearer the requirements are, the more focused the RFP will be for your business. This starts from the ground up, as you develop the RFP for your organization.

When it comes to objectives, it’s important to have them listed out earlier into the document. This helps in streamlining the process of bidding, as well as shaping the proposal from the perspective of the key objectives. It also increases accountability when it comes to establishing objective-driven deliverables.

Timelines for submission & deliverables

Every good RFP highlights the timelines of the process in a comprehensible manner. From the last date of the submission to when a project is planned on being rolled out, every deadline and date should be listed in a clear manner.

Timelines are important to introduce transparency into the process. That way, vendors can submit their pitches in a timely manner and can deliver the project as proposed. Having a clear set of timelines listed also helps vendors to establish timeline-oriented deliverables.

Listing out the evaluation criteria

This is a top strategy that separates out weaker RFPs from solid ones. Highlighting the evaluation criteria filters out vendors that may not be able to deliver specifically what your organization needs. This also eliminates the added load on the decision maker when it comes to sourcing the right vendor.

Having a clear evaluation criterion also allows companies to orient their resources in the event that they’re selected to deliver as proposed. This gives vendors enough time to execute on the proposal as well.

The evaluation criterion creates a sense of transparency throughout the process, as vendors can add key resources to better match the selection criteria of the organization.

Using standardized formatting

A key area of attention that most companies should focus on is formatting. Formatting allows for a more consistent approach to RFP development, as well as highlights key areas of requirements. Companies can introduce standardization into the formatting of the document, as well as the process of communication and delivery.

Standardization also allows vendors to synchronize with the intangible goals of the organization as well. Culture-fit and team alignment can go a long way when it comes to effective delivery and project management. Additionally, standardization also demonstrates professionalism, attracting more structured vendors to pitch in for key requirements.