At RFPIO, it’s our goal to give you all the tools you need to do your best work. But that doesn’t just mean developing software to streamline the response process… it also means providing educational resources that make you a better proposal manager.
We’re always surprised at how tricky it is to find fantastic RFP response resources. There are countless how-to articles circling the internet for everything under the sun — from “How to Cook Asparagus” to “How to High Five” (I couldn’t believe that last one was a real article, either).
With that in mind, we thought we’d do the heavy lifting of scouring the internet for great content and pull together a beautifully curated list of quality resources about RFP response
Whether you’re just kicking off your career in RFP response, or are an RFP response old-timer, there’s bound to be something in this list that tickles your fancy.
9 of the best RFP response resources for proposal teams
By Jami Oettig
I’d be remiss if I didn’t include Hubspot’s Ultimate Guide to RFPs on a list of RFP response resources. It answers questions like, “What is an RFP”, “What is an RFP Process?”, and “What’s the difference between an RFP and RFQ”?
Whether you have no idea what an RFP is, or haven’t written one for a while, their guide can help you out.
I love this list of simple but easy-to-miss editing issues to look for before producing a final proposal document! Be sure to keep this open in your browser as you do the final check of your RFP.
“These words may seem small or insignificant, but when your readers see them again and again in a proposal, they can make an enormous difference in their willingness to read.”
How Starting Earlier Will Improve Your Win Rate
Ashley Kayes, CP APMP
If you want to improve your overall win rates, Ashley Kayes has several tactics that can help you succeed. Check out this article to dive into one of the most important tactics: starting earlier.
“There simply isn’t enough time to develop a winning strategy and winning proposal when you’re short on time.”
The Case for Empathetic Proposals
If you’re someone who already knows you’re way around an RFP response, check out this article for a different perspective on how you should be approaching your writing.
“To be truly successful… we need to make a deeper emotional connection with our evaluators. This goes beyond the client-centered approach to develop empathetic proposals.”
If Necessity is the Mother of Invention, Consistency is the Father of Success
In this article, Tony Birch — founder and Chairman of Shipley Limited in the UK — shares tips and best practices for maintaining consistency in your RFP responses. starts this article with a punch:
“Having worked with a large number of organizations (both ones that are successful and ones that are not), I have become convinced that consistency is one of the key attributes of successful business writing organizations.”
While this article doesn’t talk about RFP responses specifically, it’s chock full of nuggets of wisdom useful for anyone trying to sell a product.
“For a sales claim to be effective, the customer must believe it, remember it, and want to take action based on it.”
Make Your Mark as a New Proposal Manager
Just starting out in the world of RFP Response? This article is for you. In it, Miriam shares five actionable tips new proposal managers can use to make their mark.
My favorite tip? Ask good questions.
“The questions you pose to your team can strengthen their proposal and make it more likely to win. In addition to checking for compliance, you should be asking ‘so what?’ and ‘says who?’ New proposal managers are perfectly placed to play devil’s advocate and ask these questions, because they themselves may not know the answers.”
Ashely Kayes, CP APMP
As a writer myself, I loved this piece. Full of great tips (and reminders) about how to be a better writer. Everyone — both veterans and newbies — has something to learn from this one.
“In proposals, clear writing is critical to ensuring the evaluators understand the message you are trying to communicate. Even if you have the most valuable solution, if you can’t clearly articulate the features and benefits, you won’t have a high chance of winning.”
A Complete Guide to Making Smart Bid/No-Bid Decisions
Emily Arnold, CF APMP
The title doesn’t lie. This really is a comprehensive guide for making smart bid/no-bid decisions — and an excellent resource for RFP responders everywhere.
“The proposal development process draws heavily on a company’s resources, so it is best to focus on opportunities that you have a good chance of winning.”