I wanted to share an important experience I had because I see this a lot in the consulting/freelance world. I recently submitted a proposal for an RFP and lost the bid because of politics within the company. I personally hate RFP’s because there are 3 fundamental flaws:
1.) You are bounded by the person who writes the RFP, which means limitation on platform, guidelines and ability to make a more creative solution.
2.) The person who typically puts a budget for the RFP has no clue on the details of the project. As a result, firms are literally putting bids that meet the price or under and will then figure it out if they win the bid. Thats a fundamental flawed thinking that results in projects going over scope and missing the target deadline.
3.) RFPs impede the ability to leverage a real relationship to create a proposal that has value b/c its on someone else understanding of value. As a result, its harder to maintain a long-term relationship.
I have stayed away from most RFP’s personally because the requirements are never correct UNLESS its written by a product manager who has detailed knowledge of use cases and depth in technology domain.
Sometimes the best business practice is to walk away and say NO. Don’t lose sight of this. I am curious on other peoples experiences.