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Chapter 24 - Requests for Proposals and Competitive Negotiations

Appendix C: The RFP Process Checklist





Meet with the customer to determine his/her needs. What does success look like? Who will be on ET? Preliminary discussion of the timeline.



Conduct a market analysis to gain awareness of products/services/solutions that could meet the business or technology need. Perform a make vs. buy analysis. Estimate project investment costs including RFP investment cost.



Analyze VITA statewide contracts to determine if the business or technology needs could be met through purchases from statewide contracts. Statewide contracts usually offer lower pricing than agency-specific contracts. If no statewide contracts available, continue with Step 3.



An executive steering committee may be created in support of any project as determined by the business owner; however, for major IT projects and large enterprise procurements, an executive steering committee will be required. The executive steering committee is usually comprised of business owners and executives. The executive steering committee will serve in an advisory role and may assist in developing the business needs and requirements. The executive steering committee will not be involved in the evaluation process.



Determine if project is appropriate for solution-based RFP. If determination is “yes,” RFP should include language which specifies “This is a best-value, solution-based RFP.”



Create a procurement project/evaluation team summary documenting: members’ roles and responsibilities, be clear about the SPOC’s role as lead host, contact and coordinator, and obtain signed conflict of interest statements.



Determine if procurement is appropriate to be set aside for DSBSD-certified small businesses and that barriers and limitations are removed to encourage their participation.



Develop a clear and agreed-upon statement of the purpose of the RFP. This should align with any project planning charter/mission statement previously developed by the business owner in working with VITA ITIB project management (i.e.,

ProSight). Develop a high level outline of the RFP and have the procurement project/evaluation team review it.



Develop schedule for RFP. Refer to appendix G.



Develop solution requirements or necessary specifications in accordance with the guidelines of Chapter 8, Describing the Need: Specifications and Requirements.



Establish evaluation criteria including clear, concise definitions for each criterion provided to facilitate team understanding, using the guidelines set forth in this chapter. For all contracts in excess of $100,000 a Supplier Procurement and Subcontracting Plan will be required. Establish weighting criteria.



Develop an evaluation scoring plan that explains how proposals will be evaluated with the evaluation team.



Identify major project milestones and deliverables for establishing supplier performance metrics and/or payments.




Identify any technical, functional, security, confidentiality, data protection, cost or schedule risks that need to be addressed and resolved as a result of developing the requirements, specifications and milestones in the RFP, or determine if suppliers should be required to identify any risks associated with their solutions, including costs. All procurement stakeholders should collaborate and communicate to mitigate RFP gaps (i.e., procurement, project manager/business owner, information security officer, functional/technical SMEs).



Utilizing VITA’s RFP template(s), VITA sourcing staff shall develop the RFP document in accordance with the guidelines set forth in this chapter. Other agencies should use their own templates and the VITA Minimum Contractual Requirements for “Major” Technology Projects” matrix found on SCM’s website at this location under the Forms section: until they have received VITA training on VITA’s RFP and

contract templates. VITA SCM can provide additional SaaS or ASP terms and conditions. Counsel and review may be obtained from VITA SCM by contacting



Determine if pre-proposal conference will be held and whether supplier attendance will be optional or mandatory. Include information about pre-proposal conference in RFP. Pre-proposal conference can be held via teleconference.



Finalize RFP with the procurement project/evaluation team. Review the RFP document to ensure that all necessary and specific requirements are included. Establish proposal submission due date.



Obtain CIO approval if required (refer to manual Chapter 1, VITA’s Purpose and Scope.)



Issue RFP. Post RFP for a minimum of 10 days in Posting notice of the RFP in a newspaper of general circulation in the area where the contract will be performed is optional. Consider a longer response period for more complex procurements to ensure thoughtful, thorough responses.



Answer questions from suppliers. Conduct optional pre-proposal conference or teleconference, prepared with adequate project team member participation to respond to suppliers’ questions. Post material answers on



Amend RFP if needed. Post amendment on eVA.



Receive proposals.



Evaluate proposals using the evaluation and weighting criteria provided in the RFP.



Hold initial scoring and elimination session



Conduct any supplier onsite demonstrations, presentations or clarification sessions.



Select two or more suppliers deemed to be the most fully qualified and best suited based on evaluations.



Conduct negotiations and finalize contract(s).



Obtain any required reviews/approvals (CIO, OAG, other)



Award contract(s).



Prepare a complete procurement file.



Post notice of contract award in eVA.



In the case of a Notice of Intent, procurement file remains open for inspection for 10 days after award.



Facilitate eVA catalogue.