Are you looking for a way to streamline the request for proposal (RFP) response process? If so, RFP automation may be the answer. RFP automation is a software solution that can help you manage the RFP process from start to finish.

RFP automation uses technology to store, manage, evaluate, and respond to RFPs. Before the invention of process automation, companies would waste valuable time and resources researching, compiling, and submitting RFP responses. Many of the processes involved in the management and response to requests for proposals are tedious and repetitive for procurement teams. Companies can now use RFP automation to make better use of their team and their time. This article will explore how RFP automation software can help you manage RFPs and submit bids for your company.

What is RFP Automation?

If you’re new to RFP automation, getting started can seem daunting. Managing and responding to proposal requests can be difficult, tedious, and time-consuming. But don’t worry! We’ve put together this handy guide to help you get started with RFP automation.

RFP automation is the process of automating the management, creation, and distribution of responses to RFPs (Request for Proposals). Automating the RFP response process can save your company time and money. RFP automation software makes it easy to create and manage RFP responses. An efficient response process empowers your team to focus on generating an accurate and persuasive response.

With RFP automation, you can:

  • Build core proposals
  • Identify proposal gaps
  • Create and manage RFP response templates
  • Identify all proposal requirements
  • Manage and update your content library
  • Tailor your proposal to client specification
  • Ensure accurate formatting and styles

Finally, RFP automation can improve responses by ensuring that proposal writers have all the necessary information to submit a strong proposal.

What are the Benefits of Automating your RFP Responses?

If you’ve ever been involved in the proposal writing process, you know the scramble for information and the stress of short deadlines. It can be time-consuming and frustrating to manage requests for proposal responses manually. In the fast-paced world of business, wasted time hurts your bottom line. Without the benefit of automation, proposal writers have to waste a lot of time answering the same questions multiple times. This is where RFP automation shines. Proposal automation has the power to save your writers from needless efforts and gives them the tools they need to protect your company’s interests.

The importance of producing quality content is evident when responding to RFPs. Investing in an RFP management system allows your team to focus on persuasive content.

That’s where RFP automation comes in. By using an RFP automation tool, you can improve the response process and boost the overall quality of the RFP response. Here are just a few benefits of using such a tool:

  • You’ll save time. With an RFP automation tool, you can update content libraries for your RFP responses and speed up the creation process. You can set up automatic reminders for deadlines and other important dates to keep track of everything yourself.
  • You’ll improve organization. An RFP automation tool will help you keep track of all your stakeholder requirements in one place, so you can easily see who your team has responded to and when.
  • You’ll Optimize your team. RFP automation tools store the best content used in responding to previous proposals. This allows your senior staff and subject matter experts to avoid fielding questions so they can focus on high-priority tasks. Your team can collaborate in real time, quickly flag questions, and email experts.
  • You’ll avoid mistakes and produce professional results. RFP automation helps your team make sure that all answers within the RFP response are accurate and consistent throughout the document. You can automatically insert the most appropriate choices to build a draft quickly and easily.

As we’ve already discussed, automating your RFP response process comes with many benefits. If you’re considering RFP automation for your organization, the first step is to assess the benefits of process automation against your specific business needs.

Still not sure? Just follow the steps below, and you’ll be able to weigh the benefits of process automation for your organization:

  1. Define your goals. What do you hope to achieve with RFP automation? Make sure your goals are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART).
  2. Understand your current process. Map out your current RFP response process from start to finish. Who is involved? What steps do they take? How long does each step take? This will give you a baseline to measure the effectiveness of RFP automation.
  3. Identify bottlenecks and pain points. As you map out your current RFP response process, pay attention to particularly inefficient or painful areas. These are likely areas where RFP automation could make the most significant impact.
  4. Evaluate RFP automation software solutions. Once you understand your goals and current process, you can begin to evaluate different RFP automation software solutions.

Automation Best Practices in 2022

Now that we’ve discussed the benefits of RFP response automation, let’s discuss what elements make automation software worth your while.

Integration

Proposal writing can be complicated enough without learning a new system or having to drag and drop from one software program into another. Expedience Software uses a Microsoft Office-centric approach, meaning our software is fully integrated into Office 365. This allows our users to easily navigate and collaborate on proposals across all Office 365 platforms.

Formatting Features

Expedience Software understands the importance of formatting in the professional look and feel of the finished proposal. We recognize that a well-formatted proposal can leapfrog your company over the competition to a win. We have devoted an entire software module, the Style Palette, to facilitate the proposal formatting process to ensure consistent branding and formatting every time.

Content Management

Your content library is your golden ticket to winning proposals. Leverage your previous proposals to help your team quickly build new proposals with RFP automation! Expedience Software stores content in native Word format, and your content library can include anything supported by Word. This includes images, tables, charts, graphs, infographics, and even videos.

Optimized Navigation and  Search Functions

The Expedience Software content library intuitively guides your writers in choosing the best fitting proposal content and lets them drop it directly into a proposal. Users can browse through carefully organized gallery menus and view thumbnail images, utilizing advanced search functionality within Microsoft Word.

How Expedience Software Can Make Your RFP Automation Process Easier

Ultimately, RFP automation can save you a lot of time and administrative effort when responding to an RFP. You can quickly gather the appropriate information and access your content library to streamline your response by automating the response process. Expedience Software makes this easy and intuitive with our full integration into Office 365. There are other options on the market, but Expedience Software brings 25 years of expertise in proposal management software solutions. We are proposal people. Schedule a demo today to learn how to create beautiful proposals that win business.