Proposal Request Tips


  • Notify G&C as soon as you decide to respond to a federal or state Request for Proposal (RFP).
  • Read the RFP thoroughly.
  • Ask questions!
  • Follow the instructions in the RFP explicitly.
  • Keep your eye out for amendments to the RFP and FAQ. Generally these are published on the sponsor's internet site.
  • Route early. RFP's require extra time for evaluation. Plan to route at least 7 working days prior to the specified due date.
  • Ask questions!
  • Coordinate with G&C. We are here to help you. We can provide some of the necessary documentation that is related to the University (i.e. not project specific documentation).
  • Use a consistent formula for projecting payroll expenses and obtain actual vendor quotes for your other anticipated expenses. Later, at the negotiation phase, you will have to provide documentation to support all costs you site in your proposal.
  • Try to maximize your planned procurement with small businesses (including small disadvantaged businesses, women-owned small businesses, HUBzone businesses, and veteran-owned small businesses). If you are proposing total costs of $500,000 or more you will have to submit and Small Business Subcontracting Plan obtain approval from the Small Business Administration prior to receiving an award. Contact Procurement for assistance.


  • Forget to notify G&C as early as possible regarding your plans to submit a proposal under a government issued RFP.
  • Procrastinate! Contract proposals often demand a far greater level of detail than do grant proposals.
  • Guess costs. At the negotiation phase you will have to provide documentation to support all proposed costs on your budget. Guesstimates at the proposal stage could result in you losing out at the negotiation stage if your payroll documentation and vendor quotes reflect costs significantly higher than were proposed.
  • Hesitate to ask questions. G&C is here to help!
  • Deviate from the instructions in the RFP. Competitive bids must follow a uniform process. Any deviation could result in the dismissal of your bid without review.
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