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The Benefits of a Request for Proposal (RFP)

Luke Kempski

As the economy has improved, more organizations have invested in learning technologies to gain a competitive advantage or accomplish strategic goals. Their priority is putting training and performance support at the fingertips of learners inside and outside of their organization with ease and efficiency.

As an executive or learning and development leader, you may have ambitious learning initiatives but fewer in-house resources to achieve them. So, now is the time to find a partner to assist with consulting and planning, content development or eLearning technology implementation.

Selecting an eLearning partner begins with defining your needs and assessing the strengths of your internal team. Then you can determine what tasks you want to keep in-house and which you want to outsource. Consider capacity, budget and timeline, and if you prefer to engage a partner on a project basis or start a broader contractual relationship.

Once you have a general idea of your needs, budget, and timeline, you should develop an eLearning Request for Proposal (RFP). The RFP is your tool for qualifying and eventually selecting an eLearning partner. It combines a clear articulation of your needs with a request for information from the provider such as company background, work samples, proposed solution, and projected costs. The completed RFP forms the basis for selecting the provider or qualifying a “shortlist” of providers for an in-person review and final selection.

We recently posted a custom eLearning RFP template on our learning solutions website. This template will help you organize your needs and reach out to qualified prospective partners. It will also help you assess the capabilities, compatibility and costs of different providers. You can also use the RFP process to outline criteria for selection. This is important to ensure a fair selection process within your organization, much like when you hire an employee.

Developing an eLearning RFP and a partner selection process takes time. But it will help you properly document your needs and assess the qualifications of prospective partners. This will ultimately increase the likelihood of a successful relationship that increases the value of your training investments.

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