RFPs, or Request for Proposals, are documents used when a business is seeking vendors for an upcoming project. For example, a hospital wants to build an additional wing and they need to contract out a construction company, electricians, interior designers, and other vendors to make it happen. They would put out an RFP providing all necessary information to suppliers or contractors about what the business or project needs. The RFP is then issued to suppliers, allowing for multiple bids to be received for a project.
How to Write a Proper Request for Proposal
A properly written RFP will contain these crucial key points:
- A very clear, detailed outline of the project and the expected outcome
- A timeline including all deadlines and any time constraints or scheduling conflicts
- Calls out all deliverables and objectives of the project
- Background information about the business that supports the reasoning behind the project or upgrade
- Direct questions that the prospective supplier should be able to answer
- Criteria for consideration, and what a supplier must possess to be selected
It’s also important to be up to date with ever-changing trends within the healthcare industry in order to write a relevant, proper RFP. Online tools that help write and format your RFPs can be a great way to ensure it’s put together correctly with the proper information. The online tool is then used to put your RFP into a database for the prospective suppliers to find and bid on. Rather than sending the RFP out into the void, many companies will do research and put together a list of potential vendors to send their RFP to. This is a more curated way of finding the right fit. Doing research and applying a diligent screening process to whittle down potential vendors can save a lot of time and money when it comes time to review and select them.
What Sectors of Healthcare Utilize RFPs?
We briefly use the example of new building construction as one of many prompts for an RFP, but there are many services which could warrant an RFP such as mailroom intake, data capture services, or outbound print and mail services, revenue cycle management systems, clearinghouse connectivity, or web portal creation.
Some benefits for RFPs solicitation include the following:
- Sourcing bids from multiple vendors ensures your business is getting the absolute best value
- The RFP engagement process allows both small and large companies to bid for your services on an equal playing ground.
- The RFP vets the candidates qualifications ensuring they have the proper certifications, insurance coverage, skill sets and resources to carry out your project
- The RFP may introduce new solutions to existing problems which had not previously been considered.
- RFPs can also satisfy legal obligations to accept or evaluate bids periodically.
How to Curate an RFP for Tech Services like Smart Data Solutions
When your business is looking for HIT (healthcare information technology) vendors, special considerations should be taken with your RFP. You will want to seek a vendor who is going to get you the best deal and best services. You will also need to be very clear what systems you are currently using, and that the supplier can easily integrate the new workflow with existing workflows. Lastly, you’ll need a vendor willing to commit to staying with you the entire way through development, testing, training, and go live. Finding a vendor who can fulfill all the necessary technology needs while also meeting healthcare requirements is crucial when it comes to HIT improvements.
Smart Data Solutions helps those in the healthcare industry by streamlining services and consolidating multiple vendor activities into one simple gateway. We know how important it is to have vendor services align with existing internal processes and we have the tools and experience to make your processes better.