An outplacement RFP, also known as a request for proposal, is a document that is issued by an organization that solicits proposals from vendors that provide outplacement services.
The RFP is organized in the form of a bidding process. The organization that is issuing the outplacement RFP outlines the structure of the bidding process, namely they set the terms of the contract and provide bidding instructions.
Writing an outplacement RFP can be a challenging task, though. After all, as an HR leader, you know what outcome you want - to get your exiting staff back to work - but you probably don't give a lot of thought to the outplacement process.
Let's change that so you can write a perfect RFP and, therefore, line up the perfect service to compliment your business and save you money.
What should you include in your outplacement RFP?
When writing your outplacement RFP, include the following information:
- Organization description. What does your organization do?
- Project description. What kind of services do you need for this project?
- Project value. What does this project mean for your organization?
- Project timeline. How long do you need these services?
- Allocated budget. What is your budget for this project?
- Selection process. How will you evaluate RFP responses?
If your organization is looking for an outplacement provider to manage their outplacement programs, here are six things you should look for in your outplacement RFP:
1. Scope of Outplacement Services
Different outplacement providers offer different outplacement services. Therefore, in your outplacement RFP you should clearly list the scope of outplacement services you expect to receive. Then it’s up to the outplacement providers that are responding to your outplacement RFP to provide you with a brief of their outplacement programs so you can see whether they align with your own expectations and needs.
Here are some possible outplacement services to solicit in your outplacement RFP:
- Onsite and online outplacement assistance
- Counseling and career support for outgoing employees
- Resume, cover letter, and interview preparation
- Access to job search tools, strategies and trends
- Individual and group workshops
- Reports on outplacement success
- Personalized outplacement programs
2. Outplacement Process
When looking for an outplacement company, look for one that has a comprehensive outplacement program that aims to deliver effective outplacement services. And by effective outplacement services we mean those that provide continuous support to employees from the moment of termination to the moment of placement. For this reason, you should look for a detail-oriented outplacement process in your outplacement RFP.
The best way to find the right outplacement provider is through comparison. In order to do this, come up with a list of outplacement firms and invite them to bid on your outplacement RFP.
Once you receive their proposal, you can assess their outplacement process and whether it’s something your organization will benefit from. Consequently, when you’re going through responses to your outplacement RFP, look for outplacement providers who can define a clear timeline and set milestones to reach outplacement goals.
3. Technological Efficiency
You may be wondering what technology has to do with quality outplacement services. Well, the answer is – a lot.
Technology plays a key role in outplacement programs. In fact, 75% of recruiters use some form of recruiting or applicant tracking software. Furthermore, most outplacement companies use outplacement technology and online resources to help displaced employees get their careers back on track.
Careerminds, for one, is an outplacement provider that built their own web-based outplacement technology. It’s fully customizable, configurable, and scalable. It goes to show that technology can simplify the whole outplacement process.
Other online outplacement resources you should look out for include the following:
- Online career consultations and workshops
- Job search tools
- Tracking and reporting tools
- Video guides and webinars
- Social media networking tools
Additionally, while you’re evaluating the technological proficiency of an outplacement firm you should also take a look at their website. Is the website easy to navigate through, do they have an established social media presence, and do they offer any free resources or case studies that you can review? This will help you learn more about the outplacement firm and choose the right one for you.
4. Outplacement Goals
Define your outplacement goals before you issue your outplacement RFP. Do a quick brainstorm with your HR department. What do you hope to achieve by implementing an outplacement program?
Once you’ve answered this question it’s time to look for an outplacement firm that can come up with a suitable outplacement program to achieve this goal.
Communicate your aim in the outplacement RFP to ensure you only get responses by outplacement companies who can fulfill these outplacement goals with scalable solutions.
5. Outplacement Cost
Outplacement costs vary depending on the types of services, number of employees, level of support, and other outplacement specifications. Prior to issuing your outplacement RFP, allocate a budget and stick to it.
Often companies can be a bit reluctant about disclosing their outplacement budget. However, if you want to get the best possible outplacement services, then you should share your budget with potential outplacement companies.
Why should you disclose your budget?
Well, if you don’t, it’s up to the outplacement companies to guess how much you’re willing to pay for outplacement services. As a result, they may offer you additional outplacement services or more expensive features than your budget allows. In order to receive a tailored proposal that is based on your financial circumstances, make sure you specify your budget.
Also, don’t let cost be the deciding factor when choosing the winning bid. Yes, seeing a low bid may be appealing but here’s some food for thought - how does this low price reflect on the outplacement services you receive in return? Will you miss out on some important features and jeopardize reaching your outplacement goals just to save a few extra dollars? Discuss your budget within your department and base your final decision on price AND quality.
6. Strong References
Ask the outplacement companies to provide references upon submitting a bid for your outplacement RFP. Make this a requirement for a bid to be taken into consideration. This way you know you that the outplacement firm has the necessary experience to plan and apply outplacement programs for your laid off employees.
According to global recruitment trends 2017, the majority of employers find their quality employees via referrals.
Therefore, in order to find an outplacement firm that offers quality outplacement packages, don’t forget to request references in your outplacement RFP. This will help you find the right outplacement company and reach your outplacement goals.
Interested in receiving an outplacement RFP from Careerminds? Check out our free demo below or contact us for more information about our outplacement services.