35+ Sample Request For Information (RFI) Templates

A project manager using a request for information template (RIF) distinguishes the potential suppliers or vendors appropriate for a project. Before commencing the project, especially in construction projects, several bids and proposals come in the hands of the Project Leader. As the project lead, you need to decide the suppliers who are worth the collaboration. Finding out the appropriate suppliers for the project might not be the major objective of a request for information (RFI), but it could be the reason to collect information about the services and products the supplier is dealing with.

Whether it is a construction project or a corporate project, in the process of procurement clarity is the key. Complete information concerning the product the supplier guarantees to deliver and the services to render is essential information that guides the project manager on whether to accept the proposal or not. Having said that, it is not a process to select the suppliers, but up effective procedure to find out the basic or technical information about the supplier’s offers. No business could ever skip the procedure of drafting a request for information template; it is because no project is complete without the collaboration of a third party or suppliers.

What is the Request for an Information?

A request for information template is a project to perceive information regarding supplier’s offers that contribute to complete the project. It helps the project manager shortlist the potential and compare one with another.

On the supplier’s or vendor’s proposal, the project manager thinks to give it a turn and sent a request for an information template. In response to the RFI, the suppliers mail back the request for information template to the project manager. Crafting a request for information (RFI) comes intending to collect information that eventually leads one to select the appropriate vendor, but we repeat, the request for information template is not the process to select the vendor but the lead to it.

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Who Crafts the (RFI) Request for Information?

Every project has a project lead that manages the project task and keeps it on track. The person is liable for held responsible for each step taken in the project management. It is the Project leader who assigns the project task to each individual and delegates the responsibility. Since they are the ones to whom each of the team members in the project is accountable, the project leader or the project manager is the one who crafted the request for information.

The project supervisor administers each detail of the project management and therefore, the same person is eligible to ask the vendors about their product or service. Also, the vendor only shares information like references, executive suite, customer files, their profile with the appointed project manager or construction manager.

Hence the project manager crafts the request for information form template construction.

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When to File the Request For Information Form?

The request for information (RFI) is usually used in the first stage of procurement process.

If you are wondering why it should be crafted at the first stage of procurement, it is because, as a project manager, you can only do the project and initiate the project when you have the suppliers the raw materials, and the services available.

The project proposals you get from a list of suppliers and vendors don’t indicate that you and your team are equipped with the potential dealers. After the response to the request for information from the vendors, you would be able to analyze each one of them and shortlist the likely suppliers. Lining down into a manageable group than having a non-differentiated list is more reliable.

Figuring out the options possible in the list of potential suppliers is the way to do it. The process requires to be done before commencing the project cause you never know when you need the information of a vendor that can supply you with the required product and services. Before starting with the project, the shortlist of the potential suppliers must be in hand.

Market research or other processes is not fully considered to obtain information concerning the supplier’s offers. It is good for our RFP, but to gather suppliers’ information filing a request for information form is the best.

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What Elements are Included in a Request For Information Template?

The basic contents of a request for information template remain the same for all construction businesses, but if you are business is of a different kind, then you might bring some change or modification in the request for information template format. Having said that the elements included in a request for information template are almost similar to other documents.

Through the description of RFI, you have an idea of what it is about therefore, the elements you include will be of similar ideas. Before you start including the elements, you should know that the document is not only about asking for information, it is also about sharing the project description. Based on your project requires the vendor will supply the required information. Let’s see what are the things that you can ask from the supplier-

1. Basic Info-

a. Title head.

b. Project name and project number.

c. Date.

d. Company name and company address.

2. Introduction-

The introductory part of the request for information template would be regarding your company and your objective. Fill the initial part of the document with the project and the company information. Providing your information is necessary. Just as you are interested to know about the supplier’s product or services and the company policies, the vendor is equally eligible to know about your company and project.

Hence the introduction must include-

a. The Purpose of the RFI.

State the intention of the request for proposal in proper alignment with the Project objective. You might include your plan to file the RFP within the stated timeframe. It could be 12 to 18 months.

In addition, state that the information that will be submitted by the supplier would be confidential and proprietary. To showcase professionalism, you must include that the supplier is free to decide if to respond to the request. Inform them that it is not mandatory to fill every portion of the request for information template. Ensure that the decision is completely in the hand of the supply.

b. Objectives of the document.

Define the objectives of your project and the request for information template by explaining your desired outcome from the project and what you expect from the supplier as well.

c. Background.

Describe the general and specific terms of your project that could include the issues that you want to solve. Connect it well with the information the supplier would give as a response that would serve as a benefit for the company.

2. Requested information.

Now we have come to the actual portion of the request for information template where you are requesting the supplier to provide some information basic and Technical. You might format it in a scheduled form or just in paragraph study.

So enquire for-

a. Company information.

In the company information, you can ask for the firm name, address, branches, email ID, website, and telephone.

b. Company overview.

Look for the mainline of business, its structure, and Organisation. Ask about the headquarters and its locations, its implementation, and maintenance. Request to add specific details like the number of employees working, number of contractors, and relationship with suppliers.

Question about the company’s vision and the total revenue.

c. Technical information.

Inquiring about the technical information is the essential part of identifying the company. Ask the general overview of the form and the Technologies involved and about the advantage of the technical system present in the form. You might even ask to have a small description of how the technology works and meet the objective of the client.

Aside From them you can enquire about a control system overview that would include each detail of the company, its efficiency safety procedures, warranties capabilities of the software and much other info.

d. Products and services.

Here comes the crucial part of the request for an information template. Just to make you remember that the main objective of the information template is to enquire and know about the supplier’s deliverables. No doubt on the fact that based on your requirement the supply will lay down the information, but if you ask for whole they might provide the same.

e. Experience.

Knowing about the past experiences of the supplier with their clients is the way to know if it is the potential supplier that can meet your expectation. Format a table and list down the information of the past project. See what you can ask for-

Project name.
Project location.
Client name and contact number.
Description of the project.
Starting date.
Estimated ending date.
Actual finish date.
Client review.
Provisions of response.

The supplier is not allowed to take an entire year or month for the response. But to expect a response in a proper time you too have to mention the date within which you would expect to have the response from the supplier. Mention your requirement and cause in detail so the supplier knows why and what you want to know from them.

3. Disclaimer.

Must necessarily put a disclaimer at the end of the request for information template. You might lead down the statement that the right of information doesn’t have a formal solicitation. You must ensure that the response would be considered as information only.

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How to Write a Request for Information?

There is no such specific process that we can suggest to you, but there are times that you need to follow to be able to write an effective request for information. A correctly formatted is your primary objective through which your professionalism would reflect, therefore, crafting an effective document is essential.

Let us guide you on how you can write a request for information template effectively.

1. Correct format.

Download a sample request for an information template to have an idea of how an RFI is formatted. Choose an established format and write the information accordingly. Put down your company requirements in a proper schedule. A good reference of the request for information template used for the construction industry will be a guide to the correct format.

2. Be concise.

Requesting an information template down to 3 or 4 pages is a turn-off. No supplier would like to read each element of 3 or 4 pages and respond to it. Therefore while making it make sure it is concise but not less than one or two pages or else you would not be able to include the essential information.

3. Be specific.

The RFI is more like communication but through a document, hence it must be as specific as possible. Try to use direct sentences so the information you want to reach the supplier is successful. Any indirect sentence for use of strong words may lead the other party to have a different perception than what you have stated in a sentence. It would lead to a response that might not align with the question you have asked. So streamlining the conversation can be done by being specific about the intention.

4. Be considerate.

While writing the request for information template, be considerate. State a time frame in the RFI so no one is stuck. So it is important you put the questions that would not take much time of the supplier.

5. Correct proposal.

Putting the questions in a proper format is not the only thing to focus on. You also need to see whether the proposal is correct or not. Any question that appears to be not viable from the part of the supplier is not a good indication. So, while you put the proposal or the questions create an outline of checking it once again, so you do not and learning the questions that do not relate directly to the project you are interested in.

6. Provide a time frame.

When you expect to have the response from the supplier must be stated. But while taking the time frame make sure it is flexible the supplier you are addressing the request for information template should know when you need it back. The standard time is three weeks, but it is generally variable in nature as depends on the length of your request.

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