RFQs, RFPs, tender requests – some of those long documents ask for a great amount of detail from every bidder and take a lot of time and effort to complete. At times, there is very little consequence or feedback. It is tempting to send an initial reply back to the tenderer:
Dear prospective customer,
Thank you for submitting your request for tender, we appreciate the work that has gone into the preparation of this extensive document.
Before we prepare a reply we will need to obtain a few clarifications:
During the tender process we will be asked by you to disclose confidential information about our company including financials, equipment lists and specifications, plans for intended new acquisitions, business plans and future strategies.
1.1 Provide written statements from all personnel involved in the tender process that this information will not be disclosed to third parties including a written statement that the submitted tender document, all appendixes and attachments and all other information submitted by us in writing or during a presentation will remain our intellectual property and is copyright by us. Any knowledge gained through this tender process can only be used after our expressive written agreement.
1.2 Prepare and sign a confidentiality agreement relating to all information gained through submitted written and aural information, presentations, factory tours and other materials gathered during the tender process and the subsequent supplier relationship for the duration of the term.
2. Company / Financial Stability
We are planning a long term supplier relationship and need to ensure that we partner with financially stable organizations.
2.1 Give a brief company overview (not exceeding 20 pages) including history, capabilities, SWOT analysis and main competitors.
2.2 Provide your audited financials of the last three (5) years.
2.3 Provide your business plan for the next five years.
2.4 Provide the names of your top fifteen customers during the last financial year.
2.5 Prepare a detailed declaration containing details of any current and planned negotiations with other entities regarding company merges, takeovers, acquisitions and any other business impacting initiatives.
2.6 Provide details of the three most recent suppliers lost including referee contact information. Include reasons for loss and strategies to avoid similar occurrences in the future.
2.7 Outline your occupational health and safety management system and attach the relevant documentation.
2.8 Include a detailed business continuity / disaster recovery plan.
3. Environmental Policy:
Our company has invested substantial resources to obtain the right to bear at least three (3) logos assessing environmental accreditations on their letterhead.
3.1 Provide certifications and evidence of any environmental initiatives conducted in the last three (4) years.
3.2 Provide your short and long term environmental policy and enclose evidence thereof.
4. E-business capabilities:
During the tender process we will suggest and scope a refined online system to facilitate communications relating to print production, warehousing and logistics.
4.1 Provide evidence of IT capabilities and sufficient resources to ensure internet connectivity and advanced functionality like ftp file transfer.
4.1.1 Outdated and badly maintained desktop software increases costs relating to development, ongoing maintenance and help desk costs. Specify the brand and version number of the web browser software and any plug ins employed within your company.
4.1.2 Describe your IT management team including professional experience and detailed annual budgets.
4.1.3 Describe your IT training policy. Include certificates and other evidence of training concluded within the last five (5) years.
4.1.4 Detail your on- and offsite backup procedures.
4.2 Provide evidence of the willingness to not just request features like job submission and tracking, but also use it.
4.3 Provide at least three (3) written references of providers of another online procurement system that you were able to operate without forgetting your password on a weekly basis.
4.4 Is the team designated to place orders proficient in Excel? Describe the level of competence and attach evidence (e.g. training records)
5. Account Management:
Good and consistent account management are critical for a successful supplier relationship.
5.1 Nominate your account team.
5.1.1 Submit all qualifications relevant to this position including print experience.
5.1.2 Submit the main contact person’s job description and salary structure including bonuses. This will let us determine the stability of the position and whether personnel change is expected every three months and the contact person we have trained will be substituted by a junior so that we have to start from scratch again.
5.2 Submit an escalation structure including contact details.
5.3 Attach an organizational chart including all related companies. Highlight key management staff.
Please submit your reply by tomorrow noon (12pm) via our online tender tool. Late replies cannot be accepted.