An RFQ, or Request for Quotation, is a document submitted to potential suppliers and returned with an itemized list of prices. RFQs are preferable for items that are exact and quantifiable, like hardware or components. Software and other items that are difficult are subject to a more flexible or negotiable document, like an RFP (Request for Proposal) or an RFI (Request for Information).
The RFQ process is used to elicit prices for specific products or services. Throughout the electronic component supply chain, the quote process is complex due to volume and specifications of the parts involved. Other complicated factors include availability, acceptable alternative parts, and volume discounts.
Learn more: What is the RFQ Process?
Benefits of Streamlining the RFQ Process Through Automation
A manual RFQ process has many weaknesses. Often, the process isn’t standardized, requiring employees to create a new process for every submission. And with manual processes, scalability is difficult, if not impossible, to achieve. Utilization of quote data for purposes of business analytics and future quote decisions is equally challenging.
Analyzing each line of a quote requires employees to spend hours of valued time and effort to validate thousands of lines of quotes to pull together a single document.
An automated RFQ solution, or a purchase order management system, streamlines and standardizes the process, allowing companies to maximize their time and resources. Employees can focus their efforts on more valuable activities that help to gain new business, improve customer relationships, and achieve strategic objectives.
Automating the RFQ process can help an organization improve intake and response times, a bonus both for prospective clients, who will receive information more quickly, and for suppliers, who can generate and respond to more RFQs, and potentially gain more business.
Companies can generate a quote request based on accurate, verifiable data in minutes. Quotes can be structured to include information about availability, acceptable alternative parts, customer and volume discounts, and more. The system has built-in margins, reducing manual error calculations, and improves transaction time.
Fast, streamlined processes mean employees can generate more quotes and maximize opportunities for gaining new business. Improvements in efficiency and a reduction in costly errors means that your most valuable resource – employee time – can be channeled to higher-level activities including gaining new business and achieving strategic objectives.
Orbweaver Advance is the only RFQ automation solution developed specifically for the electronics industry, by industry professionals, to address the specific needs of electronics manufacturers. Learn more about the Orbweaver Platform.