Request for Proposals – Move towards SNS

A social network diagram
Image via Wikipedia

The typical way for any IT organization to give deals for their IT services (renewals or new deals) is to publish a Request For Proposal (RFP) document. Usually, it is a huge document that has quite a lot of details asked from the various System Integrators. This is how the IT companies have been working. The SI’s come back with quite an enormous bunch of documentation – does the IT team have the bandwidth to go through all the documents provided? What is the basis for their selection?

This post is not to blame any of organizations on their way of selection. Everyone does their due diligence either before or mostly after the response document (called the proposal) has been submitted.

Is there a better alternative to this process? When so much of information is available on the internet, do we not think that the IT company have access to all this?

Add to this, the references. There must be someone in the social network of the decision-makers who will provide good valued information about the various suppliers. Armed with this information, what else is required from the RFP?

There could be a need for a linkedIn-type of network for getting information about various suppliers. This might be the next step in the industry. Obviously, the information one enters has to be verified (authentication is a must).  The site has to be a paid-only one with qualified representatives from different organizations allowed to enter.

Once a referral is given by one organization, it has to be valid for only a certain period and in a section of Information Technology (whether it is Legacy systems, Web Technologies, Business Intelligence or others).

With this information publicly available, the performance of the SI’s will automatically improve (as they will be exposed on this website for their bad show). The final Proposal can be a very crisp one where the discussion can hover around just the specifics of this opportunity.

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