The Request for Proposal RFP

The RFP is written by the client and submitted to multiple contractors for their review and subsequent bidding. The bid should then be broken down into statements of work (known as SOWs) for each WBS item. I like to think of the RFP as the "what" and the SOW as the "how."

Personally, I don't like to give away too much of the "how" in a bid to the requesting client in case it is not successful. The reason is that some clients have no intention of using that particular company at all: Receiving the technical bids is a sure way of knowing how to perform the work themselves, or better still, to get another company to do it for less, based on the first company's approach. It is also customary to see some RFPs that ask for a WBS as part of the returning bid. Adjudication of competitive bids is more difficult, but it allows the client to see the different approaches to solving the problem at hand.

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