Building the Most Effective RFPs for HR

Mathew Kaiser, SVP/National Director, Employer Tech Solutions recently offered some tips at the HR Tech Conference about how to successfully implement an RFP for your HR department.

Getting Started

Efficiency and productivity can lead to major cost and time savings. In many cases, half the battle as an HR professional is getting your RFP approved. It’s estimated that companies only win about 47% of RFPs on average.

If you are new to this part of HR, RFP stands for “request for proposal.” These documents are used to solicit a proposal for change within a company—sometimes through a bidding process by a third-party agency or company interested in offering a service or asset.

RFPs are routinely part of the process for HR benefits packages—and for requests for new technologies. For example, a company deciding to switch from one workforce management system to another.

To stay ahead of the game—maximizing your time spent on a proposal and increasing the results you will achieve as a result—here are some tips for an effective RFP for HR tech software.

Justify your Changes
Showcase specifically how you can adjust your labor costs and how you can improve your speed. According to Mathew Kaiser of Employer Tech Solutions, in many cases the biggest business driver of speed is how quickly groups or companies can be onboarded into the system, while also making sure everything is compliance certified.

Recognize Differentiation Needs within your Proposal
Kaiser says while most RFP processes are the same across all types of industries, there are some needs for differentiation. For example, some industries have more compliance considerations.

Ensure the Proposal Solves Key Pain Points
Look at the top 10-12 problems that need to be solved. If you are solving those items, you are impacting everyone. However, sometimes even if an item only impacts one department, it could be essential, with a subtle ripple effect throughout the entire organization.

Consider a Vendor Demo/Workshop
If your organization has had the same system for a long time, it can be difficult for our peers and your teams to imagine new possibilities.

“Select a vendor group that’s known for cutting edge innovation and have them come in for a quick, two hour presentation,” suggests Kaiser. “Show your executive team the flashiest innovations so they can see the possibilities and how hours of time could be taken out of certain processes.”

In most cases, if people don’t know about possibilities—perhaps a mobile app that allows for instant PTO request notification and requires no passwords—then they don’t know what they are missing.

“It’s the types of things people need to see so they can get a vision and begin dreaming of the possibilities,” said Kaiser.

Ensure Collaboration
Make sure your RFP is a collaborative document among multiple individuals. Make sure multiple people on your team are editing the document and debating the efficiency of the proposed item.

“You may also have a healthy debate among team members with one person representing their function and you representing yours,” said Kaiser. “Eventually you will average it out and come to a consensus of what will work.”

Join the Conversation

Want to learn more about RFPs within HR or share some of your knowledge surrounding an RFP proposal of your own? Log into our members’ only discussion board and let’s collaborate!

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