How to make sure your RFP arrives on time?

How to ensure your business proposal arrives on time?

You've spent hundreds of man hours getting your RFP ready. If it's delivered even 1 min late, all that time and money goes to waste and you're no longer eligible to win that big contract. So how do you ensure your RFP gets delivered on time once you've shipped it?

Author profile

by Nadine Hogan

Sep 10, 2014

Key Points

  • RFPs demand diligence, requiring extensive time and effort for projects of varying values.
  • Mitigate shipping risks for critical RFPs - use multiple carriers, verify addresses, and local print shops.
  • Enhance reliability with strategic shipping - diversify carriers, verify addresses, utilize local print shops, and ship early.
An iPad showing different shipping carriers with pricing estimation.

Discount Shipping

It's like Groupon for shipping...but the deal is always on!

Get Estimate

If you’ve ever worked on an RFP, then you know how much time and effort it takes to prepare one.

You might as well call RFPs - “BTMO”s – Burning The Midnight Oil.

Wait, have I lost you already with these acronyms?

What is an RFP?

An RFP is a Request for Proposal. It is a way for companies to bid on all types of projects, ranging in value from a few thousand to a few million dollars. When a company begins to work on an RFP, they dedicate a great deal of time, effort and money towards the project because they ultimately want to win the bid and get the business.

Basically, an RFP is important - like REALLY important - and once you work your way through one, you want to control every last detail until it reaches its destination - which is easy to do until you hand it over to the courier.

Given the fact that RFP’s have deadlines, sending them through mail or courier service can makes sleep hard to come by. Missing the deadline by a single minute will void your proposal and all that work has been for nothing (not to mention the loss in potential income for your company). So what do you do? After you do your due diligence and research the best shipping carrier, be aware that there are things out of their control: weather, mechanical problems, human error, etc.

Realizing this can help you plan for it, here’s how:

Ship with Multiple Carriers

Yes, it will cost you more money, but not nearly as much as the process to create the RFP in the first place.  Mistakes and conditions beyond the carrier’s control do happen.  By shipping with 2 different carriers, you significantly decrease your risk of missing your deadline.  Furthermore, with the savings you get shipping with two carriers using Secureship is almost the same as using one carrier without Secureship’s discounted rates.

Verify the Shipping Address

You won’t believe how many times we’ve seen this happen.  A missing suite number, building number, typo in the address - they’re all contributing factors to missed deadlines and can easily be avoided.  A shipment that has an incorrect address can take up to 48hrs to correct.

Find a local printing shop

Find a printing shop in the same city as the RFP’s destination (the closer in proximity the better).  If bad weather hits, you can electronically transfer all those documents and have them printed right there and then delivered. This is also a great idea as a back-up plan anytime you ship, regardless of how nice it is outside. If you are tracking your shipment and you see it will not arrive in time for whatever reason, that print shop will be a lifesaver.

Add a day or two of contingency

You’re probably going to hate me for saying the obvious, but ship early. Seriously. We all work with deadlines and often we are working right up to the last minute, but while we’re on the topic of saving, how about save your sanity? Get those RFPs done as soon as possible and out the door.

So the next time you have an RFP to ship, just remember these 4 simple things - use multiple carriers, verify address, find a local print shop, & ship early!

About the author: Nadine Hogan

About the author

Nadine Hogan is a writer, blogger, yoga teacher and dessert lover living in Ottawa, Ontario. While she loves to send her nephews their Christmas and birthday presents from Ottawa to Calgary, she also loves to save money doing so. This shipping-made-easier information is what she shares, and as she continues to learn more she'll spread the word!
About Secureship

About Secureship

Secureship® offers an online service that helps businesses and organizations ship more efficiently and affordably.

Providing instant price shopping across multiple carriers, Secureship is the best choice for reduced rate shipping. In addition, Secureship offers benefits such as a consolidated shipping system regardless of the carrier you choose, built-in address book, convenient invoicing and shipment management.

Visit our shipping estimate tool to see how much you can reduce your shipping expenses.