RFP

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A request for proposal (RFP) is a solicitation made, often through a bidding process, by an agency or company interested in procurement of a commodity, service or valuable asset, to potential suppliers to submit business proposals. The RFP presents preliminary requirements for the commodity or service, and may dictate to varying degrees the exact structure and format of the supplier’s response. Effective RFPs typically reflect the strategy and short/long-term business objectives, providing detailed insight upon which suppliers will be able to offer a matching perspective (Source: WikiPedia)

Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary
RFP (abbreviation)
request for proposal
RFP (Wikipedia)

A request for proposal (RFP) is a solicitation, often made through a bidding process, by an agency or company interested in procurement of a commodity, service or valuable asset, to potential suppliers to submit business proposals. It is submitted early in the procurement cycle, either at the preliminary study, or procurement stage.

The RFP presents preliminary requirements for the commodity or service, and may dictate to varying degrees the exact structure and format of the supplier's response. Effective RFPs typically reflect the strategy and short/long-term business objectives, providing detailed insight upon which suppliers will be able to offer a matching perspective.

Similar requests include a request for quotation (RFQ), whereby the vendor may simply be looking for a price quote, and a request for information (RFI), where the customer needs more information from vendors before submitting an RFP. An RFI is typically followed by an RFP or RFQ.

In principle, an RFP:

  • informs suppliers that an organization is looking to procure and encourages them to make their best effort.
  • requires the company to specify what it proposes to purchase. If the requirements analysis has been prepared properly, it can be incorporated quite easily into the Request document.
  • alerts suppliers that the selection process is competitive.
  • allows for wide distribution and response.
  • ensures that suppliers respond factually to the identified requirements.
  • is generally expected to follow a structured evaluation and selection procedure, so that an organization can demonstrate impartiality - a crucial factor in public sector procurements.

About David Rashty

David Rashty, an entrepreneur and one of the early web pioneers, has over twenty years’ experience as a CTO and a CEO. He has been involved in several start-ups and established companies and was the founder of two successful ventures.David is currently using his proven leadership and management skills to act as a Part Time CTO or "JumpStart" CTO for several early-stage ventures; this includes helping them design and develop their product and IT infrastructure.David holds a BS in computer science and an M.Sc in educational technology. He has been a adjunct university professor, given numerous workshops, written several books and articles on information technology and received numerous innovation awards.