Why You Should Ensure Compliance With An RFP
When you contract with the federal government, you should ensure full compliance with the Request for Proposal (RFP). Failure to do so will mean dire consequences. Government contracts are complex and demand competence. There are multiple rules and regulations required for the vendors to meet. There are many federal regulations along with applicable state and local regulations to satisfy. There are often interdependent regulations which must be performed. These regulations can be differently timed and the responsible team members may vary. Non-compliance with these complex requirements will negatively impact performance and hurt the bottom line.
How To Ensure Compliance
Be aware of all the RFP requirements. This step is critical. Missing even one requirement can cause non-compliance rejection. The RFP contents need to be thoroughly known, itemized, listed. At this first step, a software application that can perform document analysis and use a compliance matrix template will prove immensely helpful. Contributing to this RFP awareness, there should be a standardized template for all team members to refer to. The standardized compliance matrix template should be used to cross-reference each paragraph and sentence to the RFP locations. A keyword library should be created to highlight and address each non-negotiable term.
Determine the actions necessary to comply with the requirements and a method to perform their fulfilment. Assign the responsible team members to perform the well-defined work for compliance. There should be approved parameters set so employees can make changes. A standardized template structure should be used for all employees.
Develop a culture of shared responsibility among team members which will promote daily guidance for compliance. Compliance should be emphasized as the responsibility of the entire company. There should be clearly defined processes transparent to the team. Reasonable flexibility should be provided, and problems should be shared immediately across the team.
Establish an approval workflow. During the development of the proposal, there will be requests for changes and approvals sought. A well-defined approval workflow will provide employees with parameters and guidance for negotiating changes in the details of the contract. This will promote an efficient process of reviews and finalization. Clearly defined steps for employees seeking change approvals will save time.
Establish internal controls to help monitor either weaknesses or conformities respecting the contractual compliance. The team should monitor the efficacy of the internal controls. Target achievements should be defined, and weaknesses identified. Vendors should be monitored for compliance to their contractual clause agreements. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) should be set and regularly reviewed for contractual fulfillment. The vendors can be asked to submit their accomplishments at certain intervals of time. These policies will promote quality work, ensure deadlines are met, and cost effectiveness. Contract professionals outside the company can be retained to help monitor compliance either at the commencement or throughout the contract lifecycle.
Perfect and complete contractual compliance should be the goal of every government contractor. The best way to ensure government compliance begins with the use of the appropriate software technology. Advanced technology, empowered with Artificial Intelligence (AI) such as Natural Language Processing (NLP), can easily generate an effective compliance matrix template. It can quickly arrange all the RFP data content to be competently addressed, ensuring successful compliance.