How to Respond to An RFP When Mandatory Company Policies Don’t Exist
It is very common for issuers to include a list of company policies they want to see as one of the mandatory requirements for responding to an RFP. Often, a copy of the actual policies requested are required. Sometimes, only a description of the company’s policy (or policies) is what’s required.
List of Common Company Policies Included as Mandatory Requirements in RFP Responses
Health and Safety Policy
Bullying, Harassment and Discrimination Policy
Drug and Alcohol Policy
Leave and Grievance Policy
Internet and Email Policy
Social Media Policy
Staff Retention Policy
Staff Orientation Procedures
Supplier Code of Ethics
Master Service Agreement
Social Responsibility Plan
Corporate Environmental Policy
Options for Responding to an RFP When Mandatory Company Policies Don’t Exist
Not all organizations have the written policies requested by RFP issuers. Often we hear ‘we have them, they’re just not in writing’. In this case there are a couple of choices.
Option #1 – Will a Description of the Policy Work?
First, when responding to an RFP, make sure to understand whether the issuer is asking for an actual policy, or the description of a policy. Providing a description and committing to providing the actual policy once the bid proceeds is sometimes acceptable and frequently simpler than scrambling to write a new policy from scratch in a short time line.
Option #2 – Download a Generic Company Policy from the Internet
In many cases, generic versions of common policies can be downloaded from the internet. However, most issuers aren’t naïve and it is often easy for them to spot a recently downloaded, generic policy version. As much as possible, customizing these generic downloads of company policies provides additional credibility. However, there is still a significant difference between a policy that’s been adapted for an RFP response and an actual company policy. Remember, from a legal and governance perspective, if the policy is every required to come into effect, it must be real.
Option #3 – Boardroom Metrics Library of Company Policies
Boardroom Metrics helps organizations develop and write their company policies. We have a library of policies that we have written and we edit and customize them based on input from the bidder’s team. Although we are comfortable providing custom policies on a short time-line, obviously we would prefer to work with organization, including its legal team well before they are mandated in an RFP response.
Don’t Panic When Company Policies are a Mandatory RFP Requirement
When company policies are requested as a mandatory requirement of an RFP response, bidders don’t have much choice – the policies required must be delivered. Creating these policies before they are required is obviously best-practice. However, it is possible to react quickly and Boardroom Metrics is happy to help.
For more information on company policy writing, email [email protected] or call 416-994-6552.
Edward Watson is based in Calgary, Alberta. Ed loves complex documentation, and is equally comfortable writing RFI/RFP/RFQ responses to developing thousand-page project execution plans to creating user manuals and even writing poetry!