RFI and RFP each serve different purposes throughout the procurement process, but both are used to obtain important information. The more you know about these RFx documents, the more you can do as a business to improve your position when it comes to shipping and your shipping contract. Both RFI and RFP are instrumental in cost savings, risk mitigation, and process standardization.
What is a request for information?
A request for information is a document meant to gather information about the capabilities and qualifications of carriers. All an RFI does is request information. It doesn't obligate you to any carrier and doesn't obligate a carrier to your business. Businesses use an RFI to figure out which carriers they ought to invite to the RFP stage. This part of the process may include current shipping partners and new candidates to help expand your shipping efforts. It's not uncommon to expand your network and to bring on new, qualifies carriers to help increase your business' reach in the marketplace and build credibility.
What is a request for proposal?
The next step in the procurement process is the request for proposal. The RFP is a formal request for shipping companies to provide detailed business proposals that can meet your company needs. Your RFP needs to be specific and granular, containing all the information that you need.
A good RFP is effective, innovative, and receives complete responses that give your business the ability to compare shipping companies equally. Each RFP is different based on the needs of the business. However, each effective RFP provides the necessary information that suppliers need to achieve accurate and important responses from carriers.
Seek out parcel shipping contract negotiations support
If you're not sure how to successfully create an effective request for proposal or if you're not sure how to navigate your requests for information, a professional team of parcel shipping contract negotiators can help. With over $2 billion in refunds and credits going unclaimed by U.S. businesses every year, it's important to make sure you're getting the most bang for your buck when it comes to choosing a shipping carrier. Contact the parcel pricing experts at AFMS for more information on contract negotiation support.