Webinar Recap: How to run a successful RFP process that gets results


Arik Bronshtein

May 14, 2021

Executive director Kiersten Wyatt, of ELGL moderates a discussion with Rick Ralph, CIO of Morrisville, North Carolina and Jeremy Devray-Benichou and Arik Bronshtein UrbanLeap. Ralph explains how Morrisville could increase vendor response to its previously canceled public Wi-Fi RFP by 266%.

Watch the video replay here

The RFP process that almost wasn’t

Rick Ralph, CIO, leads technology procurement for Morrisville, North Carolina. As part of their commitment to deliver digital access to all residents, Morrisville wanted to install public Wi-Fi at its parks. While the RFP for this project had to be thorough and competitive, Morrisville had a tight timeframe and limited budget. 

Before UrbanLeap, Rick’s team had reached out to former technology partners with an informal RFP, per their internal policies. But before long, the team faced many roadblocks that bogged down the process: day-to-day management of requesting proposals, meeting with vendors virtually, discussing requirements, etc. In the end, Morrisville did not receive enough quality bids to meet its needs and policy guidelines, but Rick was still eager to find a solution. 

How UrbanLeap helped Morrisville resurrect the RFP

Thanks to the ELGL’s 2019 Small Places, Big Ideas Innovation Cohort, Rick remembered that UrbanLeap offered a solution to help local governments procure solutions. 

Once UrbanLeap stepped in, the team helped Morrisville enhance its entire bid process—from stakeholder engagement to vendor outreach. In the end, Rick received 10 quality proposals, a 266% jump compared to their initial RFP effort, and he finally felt that his team had enough information to select a winning bid.

5 pain points and how UrbanLeap addressed them 

For Rick, getting relevant and qualified proposals was a clear issue, but they also had to meet the internal policy requirements. UrbanLeap helped Morrisville address its key pain points in the following ways:  

  1. Made it more efficient to gather internal stakeholder requirements;
  2. Reduced the number of conversations with vendors because requirements were clear in the RFP
  3. Saved time—150 hours—from RFP development to evaluation  
  4. Shortened the entire process to 3 weeks
  5. Increased the number of qualified proposals by 266%

Rick commented: “UrbanLeap has been very receptive to working alongside to make the platform work for local government. And that is...key to our success.” 

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