In the world of Enterprise Software Solutions, a vendor’s sales process frequently involves a time consuming and detailed study of the fit of the proposed solution to individual client requirements. This process is often based on an Invitation to Tender (ITT) or Request for Proposal (RFP). In what is a highly competitive environment, with the opportunity to be awarded a high-value contract at stake, vendors are obliged to invest considerable time and effort on these documents, entirely at their own cost.
Responding to RFPs and ITTs ties up an organisations most capable, valued and experienced employees, often for days, sometimes for weeks, at a time. Whilst dedicated pre-sales consultants often bear the brunt of this work, most vendors find that to give a completely accurate as well as optimal response, it's necessary to draft certain subject matter experts to help with the submission, at the expense of billable work.
Not only is this work time consuming and expensive. much of it is often wasted on lost bids. Whilst most organisations attempt to make hard qualification decisions, and only pursue those bids where they have a good chance of success, more often than not it's necessary to make a reasonably thorough analysis of the client's requirements just to assess the level of fit.
Staff involved in the process often find it frustrating - they've answered the same questions many times before, and they would naturally prefer to be meeting clients, demonstrating software, and working with people, rather than rather dry documents.
Our experience suggests that bidding costs represent at least 2-3% of annual revenues for most mid-sized and larger vendors and an efficiency improvement of even 50% can make for a 10% profitability increase.
That's why we developed our solution, to automate the process as much as possible, by applying artificial intelligence to find the best and most complete answers to client questions, using the body of information which software vendors already have on their products.