Many organizations, especially those in the public sector, employ a specific process to procure goods and services. This transparent bidding process is designed to prevent fraud and corruption and to minimize waste. Types include the competitive bidding or sole source, a non-competitive method in which organizations negotiate with a single vendor.
About the Request for Proposal (RFP)
Different types of RFPs include the request for information (RFI): seeks information about the vendor to determine its ability to effectively supply a product or service; the request for quotation (RFQ): solicits information about the vendor and how it would address the buyer's needs; and the invitation for bid (IFB): a non-binding request for information from a vendor.
RFQs are generally used for requirements of $25,000 or less; RFQs and RFTs for $25,000 or more; and IFBs for needs of $100,000 plus.
RFPs are binding and function as a letter of intent that the vendor will sign a contract.
About the Solicitation for Federal Bids
According to Governmentbids.com, a federal solicitation is a “government request for proposals, bids or information”.
Solicitations, unlike RFPs or bids, do not commit the buyer to any binding agreements.
Where to Find Federal Opportunities
FedbizOpps is the federal government's only online portal for procurement of goods and services valued at more than $25,000. The site is run by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA).