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5 Signs You Need to Automate your RFP Process ASAP

If you’re in the service business, there are a few words you’ll both love and hate hearing at the same time.

Could you send me a proposal?

There’s a chance that you might get a new client and earn some money. However, there’s also a huge chance that you’ll waste hours on preparing a proposal that will never get signed and paid for. While there are many factors in why a proposal may get signed or not, there is one thing you can do immediately with your RFP process: automate it.

But is automating your proposal processes a good idea and should you even get started? Let’s show you some good reasons why you should automate your RFP process today.

You don’t know what happens when you hit “send”

One of the worst feelings in the world is sending out that email after an RFP. You twiddle your thumbs nervously, waiting for a response. The email is out and you have no idea what happens once the potential client receives it.

When you send proposals manually, the best you can hope for is email tracking - so you can see if the email was opened or not. Especially if your proposal is in the form of a PDF or DOC file, you’ll have no insights into what happens once the client opens the email.

Automating your RFP means using proposal software and that means being able to track what happens when a proposal goes out. You see, proposal software means your proposals are no longer email attachments - they’re web pages, similar to the one you’re reading right now.

dilbert comic
Source: Dilbert

This means that once a potential client clicks on your link to a proposal, the clock starts ticking and you get all the information about their activities on the page. How much time they spend on it, which sections they read the most, how many times they went back and re-opened it and most importantly, whether they signed or not.

For all of these activities, you get notifications in your account. You’ll never be in the dark again. If there is one major reason to automate your RFP process, it’s to be in the know when it comes to your sent proposals.

There are apps like Better Proposals that let you go one step further. We have a live chat integration that allows you to chat with the client as they’re reading the proposal. When they open the document, they’ll have a window where they can chat with you so you can immediately resolve their questions and increase your chances of conversion even more.

You can’t analyze your data

When an RFP comes in, you whip up a proposal, send it out and hope it gets signed. Every time you go into the process, you create a new proposal or ideally, move from a template to save time. The problem is, this doesn’t let you analyze the performance of your sent proposals.

In other words, some proposals can be excellent at converting, while others could be horrible. If you want to create m of those which are excellent, you need to analyze their performance.

When you automate your RFP process, you’ll have all the data at your fingertips. You’ll know exactly which proposals convert and which get ignored by your clients. Thanks to this data, you’ll be able to make better sales decisions in your upcoming proposals.

You take hours to complete a single proposal

We’ve had our fair share of customers through the years and when it comes to manually writing a proposal, there are very few people who really enjoy the process. You have to sit down and in order to write a good proposal, you need at least an hour of your time.

This involves taking the notes from the client meetings, finding an appropriate case study to send their way, entering their contact data in the proposal, creating a cover image, adjusting the pricing table and more.

In reality, much of this process is repeatable and you don’t have to do it manually. When you automate your RFP process, you can simply start from a proposal template rather than working from scratch. This can save significant time and money for your sales team.

Moreover, you can simply import much of the data you need from the customer from a CRM. Instead of manually typing in the customers’ information, you can just import it from your favorite CRM and all of the fields will auto-populate on their own.

It takes more than one person to take care of your RFP process

Too many cooks spoil the broth. The process of writing a proposal should ideally be done by one person. It takes less time, the process is more streamlined and just one person is in charge of all the information.

If you’re writing a proposal to solve an RFP and you need an entire sales team, something is inherently broken in your process. One person should be enough to handle all the writing, information and communication with potential clients.

The more people are involved in creating and managing proposals, the more money you’re wasting. Investing in proper proposal software saves quite a bit of time compared to the hourly wage your valuable employees are wasting in chasing client information to complete your new project proposal.

You’re spending more time creating proposals than making calls

Your sales team is there to do one thing - get new sales. They should spend the bulk of their time in calls and meetings, putting them in front of new prospects and closing deals. The worst thing they could be doing is sitting in front of their laptops, typing away at their next proposal, doing the job of an overpaid data entry specialist.

Your sales team belongs on sales calls and if they have to deal with RFPs and creating proposals, this should only be for a percentage of their time. They are far more useful out in the field, closing new sales.


RFPs are a necessary part of the sales process and they should be nothing more than a routine, like sending an email or creating a new task in your favorite project management system. If your RFP process is making you lose time, waste resources and worry about what happens with your proposals, then it’s high time you automated it.

And if that’s what you’re looking for - try out Better Proposals today! With our detailed proposal analytics, tracking and templates, your sales team will have more time to do what they’re really great at - selling. Sign up for your free trial today!

Adam Hempenstall's profile image
Adam Hempenstall is the CEO and Founder of Better Proposals. He started his first web design business at 14 and has since written four books and built an international movement around sending better proposals. Having helped his customers win $500,000,000 in the last 12 months alone, he’s launched the first ever Proposal University where he shares best practices on writing and designing proposals. He co-runs a once-a-year festival called UltraMeet and is a massive FC Barcelona fan.