What Is an RFQ? (With Example)

Request for quote


RFQ vs. RFP vs. RFI

One of the three main documents used by businesses to order goods and services is an RFQ. Here are the essential differences between them:


Sending a request for information (RFI) allows you to learn more about a vendor’s offerings prior to using an RFQ to obtain a quote from them. You can find out more about a vendor’s offerings by using an RFI. In contrast, a request for proposals (RFP) enables you to collect proposals from various suppliers so you can compare their offerings and select the best one.

When to use it

When a business is certain of the exact goods or services it needs, how much to order, and whether it needs the good or service regularly, it will frequently use RFQs. Before requesting a quote, you might send an RFI to the vendor to learn more about their goods and services if you haven’t worked with them before or if you’re unfamiliar with their offerings. You might issue an RFP rather than an RFI or RFQ if you need complex or specialized goods or services so that suppliers who can provide them can contact you.

Who uses it

Businesses that are expanding, changing their business processes, or entering new markets may send RFIs to learn more about goods and services they haven’t used before. You might be more likely to send RFQs if you work in procurement at a reputable company with regular vendor needs because you are more certain of what you want to buy. RFPs are frequently used by businesses to solicit responses from suppliers of highly specialized products or services.

What does RFQ mean?

A formal request for a quote, or RFQ, is made to a potential vendor or supplier. To determine which supplier to choose when an organization needs a specific good or service to improve business operations, procurement teams may issue RFQs to various vendors. Vendors and suppliers frequently welcome the chance to submit bids for jobs and provide price quotes based on the requirements of the company, then carry out the service or provide the product if chosen. A request for quotes is merely informative and not legally binding. Information companies provide in RFQs may include:

How to write an RFQ

Write an RFQ using the following format to send to your reliable vendors:

1. Identify your needs

You can choose the vendors who provide these goods or services and be able to communicate the company’s needs to them by having a clear idea of what you need from a supplier. If you’re a department manager, think about getting input from your team first to get additional viewpoints before developing the RFQ. Make a list of the suppliers you want to receive your RFQ as well.

2. Introduce your business

You may have worked with some of the vendors from which you request an RFQ in the past. If you don’t already have a working relationship with them, introduce your company by going into more detail about what you provide, how you operate, how your team is organized, and any other relevant details the supplier might find useful. Describe your issue and the assistance you seek from the company in your introduction.

3. Describe the product or service you need

In your RFQ, be specific about the goods or services you require from a supplier. You can also mention things like the quantity of an item you need, the particular services your company needs to run, and the frequency of product replenishment or other service visits. In order to provide you with an accurate quote for your precise request, the supplying company can use this information to assess whether these requirements can be met.

4. Provide a deadline for response

It’s crucial that the vendors you’re contacting have a deadline they can adhere to so they can promptly respond with their prices. Additionally, this helps you stay on schedule for acquiring the goods and services necessary for effective business operations and could avoid needless delays in contracting with a supplier for your requirements. After that, you can decide to cut out the vendors who don’t respond promptly in order to concentrate on the ones who do.

5. Explain your decision-making process

It’s crucial that vendors are aware of your decision-making procedure. This enables them to give you pertinent information so you can make a decision. Think about outlining who is involved, when you plan to choose a vendor, what you are looking for in vendors, and the evaluation criteria you will be using.

Request for quote template

Examine this sample RFQ to use as a guide when composing your own:

Company information

[Company name]
[Company address]
[Contact name]
[Contact phone number]
[Contact email address]

Brief description of the business, including the activities it performs, the markets it serves, and the rationale behind sending the RFQ.

Project information

Project name: [Name] Project specifications: [Product or service requirements] Estimated order date: [Date] Delivery requirements: [Date the company anticipates receiving goods or services and, if applicable, the frequency of recurring deliveries]

ConsiderationsEvaluation method: [Short description of the process for selecting a vendor][Specific question about the product or service] (optional)[Specific question about the product or service] (optional)Terms and conditions: [Summary of the terms and conditions a vendor agrees to by submitting a response]Submission instructions: [Explanation of how to submit a response and what to include]Submission deadline: [Daily deadline for submissions]

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