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What is a call center RFP?

What is a call center RFP?

Choosing a new call center vendor is a big decision. And with all the available technology, you need to know what questions to ask potential partners to determine which solutions meet your unique needs.

A request for proposal (RFP) simplifies the decision-making by systematizing the evaluation process so you always have the right information to compare vendors and choose the best solution.

Defining an RFP

An RFP includes the procurement framework that streamlines the initial stages of contract solicitation and the document detailing what product or service your company wants to purchase.

A company uses the formal RFP framework when decision makers know what they want to buy and are soliciting multiple offers. A formal RFP document specifies your business and technical requirements — comparing the most important vendor capabilities so you can identify and select the best products or services.

Check out our handy guide if you need some practical help to start your own RFP process.

The RFP process

The RFP process is triggered when a contract with an existing supplier is up for renewal, and you want to consider your options.

To start your RFP, describe your current technological state, challenges and exact requirements — this way you’ll get better answers from vendors. A vendor is a long-term partner, so do thorough research into a company’s history, technology partners and roadmap.

Once the RFP is drafted, circulate it to all internal stakeholders to ensure your company-wide needs are met. When you’re satisfied, distribute the RFP through the channels that will garner the best candidates.

Once you receive RFPs back from interested vendors, narrow down the list of best proposals. Then open negotiations and award the contract to the bidder that best meets your needs.

Important RFP issues

To get the most pertinent information from a vendor, here are some important issues to consider when starting the RFP process:

  • Requirements vs. technology: Contact center software differs by vendor, so thoroughly investigate each vendor’s core technology. Look for an all-in-one platform that’s extensible, offers continuous innovation delivery and is accessible through a single interface.
  • Transparency and support: Look for vendors that provide licensing, pricing and terms up front and can support you during — and after — you transition to their product.
  • Omnichannel journeys: Aim to access multiple data sources that can predict next-best actions and route most efficiently for a consistent, seamless and personalized omnichannel customer experience.
  • Workforce management: Improving customer experience starts in-house, so look for vendors that have software featuring workforce engagement management capabilities that prioritize employee engagement.
  • Security and compliance: Products and services should be certified for the highest security standards and comply with the laws and regulations wherever you do business.

Using an RFP

The RFP process is a complex undertaking, so don’t initiate it too often or rely on it exclusively as a sales tool. For example, an RFP isn’t necessary for simple questions that can be answered in a sales meeting.

An RFP is a great way to evaluate which vendor to partner with for your call center platform. The best solutions should engage both customers and employees to yield better returns on your company’s key metrics.

Contact us today to learn more about how an RFP can help you make the important decisions to grow your business.