[custom_frame_right shadow=”on”][/custom_frame_right] You have shortlisted your suppliers, sent out your RFQs and are now beginning to receive quotes from the various entities that you contacted. The first thing you should be doing as you begin to receive the bids is to check them against your RFQ to make sure all specifications, priorities, etc. have been addressed and are quoted accurately. Make sure the quotes are clear and that any ambiguity is resolved before you compare and contrast the bids received.
Create a scorecard that you can use to record all quotes as you receive them. You may wish to assign a rating to each category (as defined by the priorities that you defined previously) and grade each supplier’s quote on a scale of 1 to 5 in each of the categories on the scorecard. Scores can be weighted depending on the importance of each priority and the totals can be compared in order to get a general idea of where each offer ranks.
Unfortunately, selection of a supplier is not a scientific process. Therefore, you need to have a good qualitative understanding of the pros and cons of each offer as you make your comparisons.
Once you have narrowed your list, you should ask each of the candidates to provide you with a sample for review. This is extremely important as it will allow you to verify the spec noted in the quote sheet. There have been far too many times where a price that was too good to be true in actuality turned out to be for a product that was entirely different than the spec noted in the quote sheet. In the words of Ronald Reagan, “Trust but Verify.”