5 Common RFP Mistakes That You Can Avoid – 2024 Guide

The essential purpose of business is to make a profit. Certainly, love what you do, do what fulfills you – but keep your mind on important stuff too. If you perceive what you are doing as a business, and if you want it to progress in the currently imposed system – providing financial resources is an essential necessity. Therefore, RFPs are a necessary tool in modern business. Yet, very often they are so ‘dry’ or poorly written – that they don’t bring positive replies. Therefore, we will point out the 5 most common RFP errors – and try to explain to you how to avoid them.

The Importance Of Well Written RFP

Making an offer to sell a good or service is an important part of doing business. A well-made offer can lead to a larger number of contracts and higher sales volumes. On the other hand, a vague, ambiguous, and confusing offer can lead to a dispute during the execution of the agreed job. Then, instead of making and sending new offers – we have to spend time and resources on interpreting and correcting poorly composed offers and contracts.

The Importance Of Well Written RFP

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Sometimes in practice, the terms offer and pro forma invoice are equalized. However, these are not the same things – and we have to make a difference from the very beginning. You should consider RFP as the document that precedes the estimate. That is, based on our offer, the buyer decided exactly what he wanted and placed the order. After accepting the offer, we issue a pro forma invoice to the customer to pay us before we perform the service or deliver the product/goods.

What Exactly Is RFP?

Request for proposal (RFP) is a type of offer for concluding a contract –  which contains all the essential components similar to the contract. Therefore, by accepting it – you are ready to sign the contract. One should follow these rules when making an offer. That is, it should always be borne in mind that the acceptance of an offer, which we have given to somebody – means that we have concluded some kind of contract with the party that accepts the offer, even though the contract is not written. RFP documents usually have a .pdf file extension. To convert doc, docx, xls, rtf to pdf, use any online file converter like AnyPDF.

Common RFP Mistakes You Can Avoid

1. Lack of Experience Leads You to Give Up

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A large number of bidders, especially those who do not have much experience in public procurement procedures – reduce the preparation of the bid to the mere filing of the documentation forms. Of course, this can have consequences as a result, and even if their offers are the most favorable – they are usually rejected due to some small shortcomings. A similar problem arises with bidders who do not have enough experience – because as soon as they see additional conditions that they do not meet or cannot fulfill through a joint bid, they give up such tenders. With this behavior, potential bidders lose many possible jobs – because they think these jobs are reserved just for big players.

2. Draw-Back Due To Discrimination Against Small Bidders

Some of the additional conditions that are in the documentation are there for justified reasons – because they protect the interests of the client. However, a lot of them are there as something that should turn down small bidders. However, such conditions, which are often discriminatory, can be removed. Some bidders from small communities and cities do not want to participate in bidding for fear that they will not have a chance to get a job. There have been countless examples of this through the work. That is why it is necessary to seek additional explanations – and therefore the help of some of the professional bidding agencies is necessary. Agencies will help you put together the right RFP response, and if you want to know more about how to do it, click here. When you do this job with the help of professionals – you can be sure that you will do everything right and at your complete discretion as a client who has hired an agency.

3. Consulting Agency Services Are Always Expensive – Not True

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Another big misconception of potential bidders – is that the services of specialized companies for consulting services in the field of bidding are expensive. Many agencies that deal with this type of service narrowly specialized in bidding, want to prove otherwise. Therefore, they strive to selflessly share their experience in this field with all potential bidders. Truth be told, a wide range of prices for such services is also noticeable – but it mostly depends on your needs as a client. For each client, the price of the service is independently formed – based on a specific requirement and need and depending on the type and scope of bidding. Of course, if the price offered by the agencies is not suitable for you – you should not bear any costs related to the interview with their team.

4. Observance Of All Deadlines For Validity Of The Offer

A reasonable time for which the other party may consider the bid and respond should be stated as the period of validity of the bid. Also, the bid validity period should be connected to the bid validity period for input elements. This includes situations where you need materials, goods, or certain services – that you will procure from a supplier. It would be a bad situation for our customer to accept the offer – but for our supplier to no longer be able to deliver his product/service to us under the previous conditions, because the offer has expired.

5. What The Offer Should Not Include

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If we know from the circumstances of the offer, or previous experiences, that there may be confusion or misunderstanding – then the offer should list those cases. Therefore, it is always good to have the so-called general business conditions. That document should clearly state anything that could create confusion, as well as cases in which your company limits itself from liability to third parties.

The Bottom Line

While everything may seem difficult and a little confusing to you, it is not. In any case, if you want to avoid typical RFP errors, it is best to turn to professional consulting agencies that are versed in the business.