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Electronic Data Interchange System

RFP - Example Questions

Simplifying Software Selection

Updated Monthly, this Ready-to-Use RFP Template Master asks vendors about 1,655 state-of-the-art criteria essential to the successful evaluation, selection, and implementation of an integrated Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) software system solution.

Unlike others, this RFP template is not limited to collecting just basic vendor background, feature availability, and pricing information.  This RFP template utilizes capabilities specialized for investigating complex EDI system environments to collect additional information about a proposed system's Risk, Implementation, and Supportability as well.  This enables Infotivity RFP templates to provide system evaluation and selection accuracy far beyond traditional RFPs limited to asking vendors about just electronic data interchange software feature availability.   (See the optimized RFP Capability Checklist)

Actual screens and questions from this EDI RFP and it's matching Vendor RFP Response Evaluation Toolkit are shown below to illustrate how they enable you to easily collect the unique metrics needed to successfully identify, acquire, and implement the electronic data interchange (EDI) software solution best suited to your company's needs. This RFP contains questions that query vendors about SaaS, Cloud Computing, Voice Technology, and other emerging capabilities to ensure the optimum fit to your current and future requirements.


About this RFP Template:

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    SAVE WEEKS, even MONTHS OF TIME by using thousands of professionally written EDI software RFP statements & questions to communicate your EDI software system requirements quickly and accurately. No need to re-invent the wheel.

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    IDENTIFY Feature AVAILABILITY & DELIVERABILITY. Unlike other RFPs, Infotivity RFP Masters automatically collect the information needed to identify BOTH the AVAILABILITY of software features, and their DELIVERABILITY, i.e., HOW those features will be delivered. Each RFP Master includes a Feature Support Matrix (FSM) to automatically capture this information, which can be used to create very accurate and reliable engineer-to-order software system implementation schedules.
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    Determine RISK and SUPPORTABILITY. RFP Masters automatically evaluate vendor response data collected to quantitatively determine the SUPPORTABILITY INDEX of each proposed software system. This index ranks the potential support problems inherent in each proposal. Accurately compare the amount of ongoing support needed to keep each proposed EDI software system up and running. Measure the true impact of each system on your business over the long term.
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    WORKFLOW TOPICS ensure the proposed electronic data interchange software can be fully integrated and utilized to enhance business procedures at all levels of the enterprise.
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    VENDOR RESPONSE VALIDATION saves time and effort, and reduces errors, when evaluating vendor EDI software proposals.

About the included Vendor RFP Response Evaluation Toolkit:

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    "APPLES-to-APPLES" COMPARISON of vendor RFP responses (proposals) is assured by extensive use of quantitative RFP questions and full vendor response validation. Compare proposed EDI system software features side-by-side faster and more accurately with the fully automated Color Comparison Chart matrix included with this RFP at no extra charge.
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    EVALUATION RATIOS our RFP with Extended Analysis also calculate many vendor response (proposal) evaluation ratios enabling a very detailed review of each vendor RFP response (proposal).
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    AUTOMATED WEIGHTED GRADE POINT SCORING is a quantitative measure of how well a proposed EDI software system matches up to your business priorities. This graph compares the overall total scores for each proposed system. This Score is based on all vendor responses except Pricing and Vendor Background.
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    Feature Delivery Methods This graph compares HOW each vendor is planning to deliver the proposed electronic data interchange system. The bars show how much of each competing system is going to be delivered Fully Supported "out-of-the-box", how much will be delivered using the Report Writer, a Configuration option or 3rd Party product, and how much is dependant on Custom Programming & Scripting. The scores used in this comparison are based on responses to software system questions only, i.e., no vendor, pricing, or support responses are utilized.
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    Supportability Index A proposed electronic data interchange system could look very good on paper, but once implementation begins the reality could be very different. The ease with which a system can be implemented and maintained over it's expected life is controlled in large part by the amount of custom programming and scripting required to build & maintain the system. The Supportability Index is based on responses to Software System Features only. This graph compares the potential support effort inherent in each proposed system.
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    Overall Comparison This graph compares the total Weighted Score of each proposed system along with its Supportability Index and associated Vendor Profile. Use this when assessing the RISK of a proposed EDI system and whether or not the system can indeed be implemented by the proposing vendor successfully.
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    Vendor Profile Scores This graph compares a score measuring the background, expertise, capabilities, and other data collected in the Vendor Global Issues section of the RFP. The Vendor Profile Score provides a way of assessing the Capabilities PROFILE of a proposing vendor.
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      A Detailed & Comprehensive List of:

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) System Features

      Pre-defined electronic data interchange RFP criteria ensure no important business requirements or software features "slip through the cracks".  All are in a quantitative format that guarantees vendor responses will be meaningful, consistent, and easy to compare. All questions are professionally prepared by application specialists to address BOTH the STANDARD features and EXCEPTION CASE software functions required.


      Identify BOTH EDI Software Features Availability and Deliverability

      Unlike other RFPs that try (and fail) to gather useful solutions data about complex electronic data interchange system features, RFP Masters are not constrained to the use of summary-level "Yes" or "No" answers. This RFP Master uses a Feature Support Matrix (FSM) that identify BOTH feature AVAILABILITY and DELIVERY Method. This RFP Master function is useful during both the electronic data interchange software selection AND the system implementation phases of large projects because it enables effective Earned Value Management through detailed cross-referencing of usable software functionality and vendor invoicing.


      Determine the Risk & Supportability of Proposed

EDI Software Solutions

      Unlike other RFPs, an RFP Master can illustrate potential support problems (and risk) inherent in vendor software proposals. The Feature Support Matrix (FSM) used in each RFP Master categorizes the inherent risk posed for each criteria, and uses that information to calculate the SUPPORTABILITY INDEX for each vendor RFP response. For example, a feature delivered "out of the box" FULLY SUPPORTED is less risky than one delivered through custom programming, even if the programming is free. This RFP Master function is useful during both the software selection AND the implementation phases of a large electronic data interchange system because it enables effective Earned Value Management through detailed cross-referencing of usable software functionality and vendor invoicing.


      Workflow Topics Included.

      The ability of the proposed software to successfully integrate with existng business process workflows, or implement new workflows, is critical to a achieving the high productivity increases and ROI expected of the new EDI system. This RFP Master examines all pertinent Workflow features in detail.


      Vendor Response Input Validation.

      Vendors must answer each RFP question by choosing from a pre-defined list of possible responses. See below for an example of this drop-down list. This forces all vendors to respond to each electronic data interchange software question in a consistent, standard manner. Eliminates the days of time typically wasted trying to compare the inconsistent or incomplete vendor responses obtained by using traditional, non-quantitative RFP questions! Ensures vendor proposals are easy to compare and evaluate!


      Weighted Grade Score Graph

      Compares the Weighted Grade Point Score calculated for each proposed system. This is calculated as follows: The vendor response to each RFP question is assigned an unweighted "raw" score. This raw score is then multiplied by the weight factor you entered previously (default = 1) for that RFP question to calculate the weighted score for each response. All of these individual scores are then totaled for use in this comparison. This score is essentially a measure of how well a electronic data interchange software system fits your business and software needs, prioritized by the weight (importance level) you assigned to each question in the RFP. In essence, this score measures the SUITABILITY of each proposed software system to your overall requirements. . NOTE this score measures just software functionality, and does not include any measure of vendor background, expertise, support, or programming ability.


      Feature Delivery Method Comparison:

      An analysis of how each vendor is proposing to deliver the software feature/function contained in their proposal. The graph below shows the percentage that is Fully Supported "out-of-the-box", the percentage to be done via Report Writer, a Configuration Parameter, or Third-Party add-in, versus the percentage to be done via Custom Coding (Scripting / Programming). This information is very useful in terms of identifying RISK, since a Fully Supported (and tested) feature presents far less risk than that same feature done as a "custom programming" task. Also, see the Supportability Index, which sums up these detail risk factors.


      Supportability Index Graph:

      The Supportability Index is a forecast of how much software support and maintenance may be required to keep each proposed EDI system running at full potential over it's lifetime. This score is determined by how much custom coding is required to implement the proposed electronic data interchange software, and which business processes depend on the customized software.


      Overall Comparison Graph:

      This graph compares both the Weighted Grade (Suitability) Score, Supportability Index, and the Vendor Capabilities Profile side-by-side for easy reference. It is important to see how much custom coding is in a proposed system that also has a high Weighted Score, along with the Vendor Profile. The more custom code, the higher the risk posed by that system. Therefore, the more custom coding, the more expertise and capabilities a vendor should have.


      Vendor Profile Score Graph:

      The backgrounds, expertise, capabilities, and certifications of each vendor is obtained in the Vendor Global Issues section of the RFP. The vendor responses to this section are totaled separately from the software functionality topics, and this data is used to calculate the "Vendor Profile Score". The higher the score, the more CAPABILITIES a vendor is probably going to be.


      Color-Coded, "Apples-to-Apples" Comparison of Proposed Systems

EDI Software Comparison

      These comparison matrices automatically change vendor response cell background color to GREEN, YELLOW, or RED, to reflect how favorable each response is to your needs! Compared to the tedious task of reviewing hundreds of mono-color Yes/No answers, these colored responses allow problem areas to be spotted more easily, and risk assessment is made much more accurate. All required response comparison matrices are included and ready-to-use! Quickly and easily compare electronic data interchange software system proposals side-by-side, feature by feature, in detailed comparisons you control! Keep your project on-schedule and under-budget.


      Evaluation Ratios

      The Screen below describes all of the Vendor RFP Response evaluation ratios automatically calculated in our software RFP Masters:


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