Are You Utilizing RFPs To Maximize Your Profits?

request for proposalIf you are running a small to mediums sized business, undoubtedly you understand that maximizing your profits goes beyond sales. Profitable businesses find ways to cut costs and find the most beneficial partnerships with suppliers.
Normally, this is where a quirky remark about why you should be using RFPs (request for proposals) would fit in this blog. Yet, the cold-hard truth is if you aren’t using RFPs most likely your competitors have a leg up on your business and suppliers won’t take your business as serious as companies that furnish them with RFPs. Here’s why.
RFPs allow you to prepare in ways that help successful business operate…well successfully. When you send out a good RFP (we’ll discuss what make a good one shortly), your business can make better supplier decisions based on the feedback. Price comparisons, supply timelines, and other beneficial data can be compared. Some businesses even prepare counter-offers based on some perks that competing suppliers offer (this strategy should be used sparingly and with discretion).
After you get into the RFP game, you’ll notice that some suppliers will begin to forward one to you annually. Why? Most major businesses require such from their potential suppliers. Once you start receiving RFPs or getting emails asking when to forward you a RFP, you’ll know that a supplier vies you as a potential long-term business partner. This is where significant business savings can be found. Suppliers view RFPs almost a guaranteed business and many of them set their quarter budgets by them. Once you are part of their budget, you’re important and deals can be made.
Sometimes suppliers will forward a formal RFP, while others will as you for your RFP form. If that happens, what should you include in your RFP form?

Brainstorming Your RFP

First, figure out what specific details are absolutely necessary to know. These usually include price, delivery, and other essential contract terms. Next, add in details that would like to know. Balance the amount of details based on the size of the contract. No one would like to fill out a 40 page RFP for an annual contract that is worth a few hundred dollars. If you need some help formulating a RFP, contract a freelance writer for the write up. Once it’s done you can use it year after year with minimal changes.
Remember, RFPs give you the ability to make capital saving decisions that you normally would not have.
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