Are you new to the process of putting together a response to an RFP? You may not be familiar with the differences between proposals for the government and private sector.
The objectives of the project and the regulatory requirements that you have to stick to are different. With private companies, profit is typically one of the primary motivations. Public companies, on the other hand, are usually looking to improve the interests of the general public with their endeavors.
The differences don’t end there. When you put together your request for a proposal, you will need to consider the following factors.
1. The Level of Transparency That Needs to Exist
A private company exists in a competitive environment. It’s essential for their purchasing activities to remain confidential.
Public entities have to display their budgets and how they allocate their money. Since their funding comes from the general public, they need to show that their money is going towards their stated purpose. The freedom of transparency given to private companies allows them to take shortcuts that might be less than ethical.
They also don’t have to share the evaluation criteria they use to review your proposal with the public. This means that they may be more likely to let less environmentally friendly methods fly. They aren’t required to let anyone know why they chose a winning bid.
2. The Laws and Regulations That Will Affect Your RFP
When you put a proposal into a public organization, you will have to do so in a regulated and formalized format. Within your packet, you will need to include certain legal documents and government disclosures. This includes information about political contributions, denial of collusion, disclosing the source of investment dollars, and more.
When a private company accepts a bid, these same documents aren’t necessarily making the bidding process much shorter.
In addition to the regulations put in place by federal and state governments, many public entities have their own additional requirements. These make the process even more complicated and they may require you to rebid on the contract every year.
3. The Preferences of the Public in Your Area
Government entities have standards to uphold in their communities. Often, small business owners have to be selected from the local community. In the private sector, people understand if you choose to go with the company that brings you the lowest bid.
Many private companies like to go with larger firms. There is less risk involved when fulfilling the contract and they can use multiple vendors for their needs.
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