Request Information is a tool that enables Buyer organisations to ask selected Suppliers supplementary questions, often in preparation for an upcoming opportunity. In some Networks/Communities this is a required step in regulated tendering processes.
Please note: The Buyer who initiates the Request Information event can also use responses
provided in the core Questionnaire as part of their initial selection criteria. It is therefore important that you keep your Questionnaire up to date and that your subscription level and status complies with requirements.
Request Information is accessed from the top left-hand menu. This will open the Request Information Dashboard, which lists all the events:
- To which you have been invited to respond
- To which you have responded
- For which you have received an exclusion insight report
- Open: An Event that has been issued by the Buyer organisation and is within the specified deadline.
- Closed: An Event that has passed the deadline date.
- Excluded: A regulated Event for which you did not meet specific criteria (see section below).
The Response Status is defined by whether your organisation has registered interest and by whether a response has been provided.
- Invited: The Buyer wants you to participate in the Event; it is still open and your organisation’s response is pending
- Interested: Your organisation has registered an interest but has not begun to answer the Buyer’s questions
- Not Interested: Your organisation has said it is not interested in the event
- In Progress: Your event response is being populated but has not been sent back to the Buyer
- No Response: Event closed without a response from you
- Responded: A response has been sent to the Buyer by your organisation
You can indicate your organisation’s initial interest in the Event by opening the Event from the dashboard and clicking on Actions. Choose either ‘Register interest’ or ‘Register as not interested’. This allows the Buyer to track interest in the Event and anticipate response volumes. The Event Details section contains key information and guidance about the event, including supporting documentation, deadlines and contact information.
When you are ready to respond in full, go to the Questions section. Designed by the Buyer, you will see responses can have free-text or list-selection formats. You may also be asked to upload supporting documents (max size 30MB). Your responses and uploads will be saved as you go; you can leave the Event and pick up again where you left off. Click on Submit Response when done. Ensure that your response is submitted at the time the Event closes or it will not be seen by the Buyer.
Changing your interest in an Event
You can change your organisation’s response to the Event as follows. Open the Event from the Request Information Dashboard and click on the ‘Actions’ button top right.
To change Status from interested to not interested, select ‘Register as not interested’. Note: a padlock will be visible next to the questions preventing any response from being provided – any previously submitted responses will be cleared. To change Status to ‘Interest’, select ‘Register interest’. The event is now ‘unlocked’ and responses may now be entered.
If a Buyer has launched a regulated Request Information Event, they may be required to notify Suppliers who were not invited. You will receive a notification if the Buyer ran a search for Commodity Codes that your organisation provides in regions that your organisation can supply but your organisation was subsequently filtered out of the list of search results. The exclusion notification will tell you which additional search filters were used that led to your exclusion – this might be the absence of a specific documented management system, for example. Clicking through from the notification will show you:
- Event details
- Exclusion date and time
- Issue date and time
- The criteria that were not satisfied
- The criteria that were satisfied
Messaging allows Buyers and Suppliers to communicate directly with each other about open Events. As a Supplier you may want to request more information from the Buyer about the opportunity.
Access Messaging in the header bar by using the envelope icon. A counter on the icon shows how many unread messages you have. You can reply to Buyers’ messages about Events here. Alternatively, you can initiate a conversation with a Buyer about an open Event by navigating to that Event and selecting ‘Message’ from the ‘Actions’ menu. The message you send will only be seen by the Buyer, not by other Suppliers invited to the Event
- The message header contains the Buyer organisation name and the Event name
- Enter your message and when complete, ‘Send’