Ganesh Shankar Discusses the RFP Process on Portland Business Journal
Responding to requests for proposals is one of the most important tasks at many companies, as it represents the opportunity to win new business and gain new revenue.
However, for the people responsible for actually completing the RFP, the experience of responding to the request is frequently frustrating, tedious and time-consuming.
“Responding to RFPs can be a very painful process,” said Ganesh Shankar, CEO and co-founder of RFPIO. “RFPs can be many pages long with multiple sections and typically involve coordination of multiple teams and individuals on each side of the proposal. It often feels like an exam with no clear answers or guidance; no one likes that.”
Shankar’s company aims to change that experience. The startup developed a cloud-based proposal management system that simplifies and automates the RFP process and makes it easier for teams to collaborate quickly to complete proposals on schedule.
The product learns from past responses and recommends the best content for new questions. It also delivers a dashboard that provides visibility into the RFP process.
“As a product manager, I was spending 20 percent to 30 percent of my time just responding to RFPs, which often seemed like repetitive work. It really impacted the time I was able to spend on my primary job,” Shankar said. “Compounding this, my product team was only one of five or six teams involved with each RFP process, which points to the magnitude of work-time invested in every RFP.”
After looking for software to help this process, the three founders decided to build it themselves.