Wind River backs IMC RFP template programme
March 13, 2018
The decision by the IoT M2M Council (IMC) to launch an RFP template programme could be just what the industry needs, according to Tom Gibbings (pictured), market development manager at Intel-subsidiary Wind River.
Speaking at last month’s Embedded World in Nuremberg, he said that RFPs were “unavoidable” for customers because they had become part of the standard process.
“There has to be a better way of doing this,” he said. “The current process is very costly because it eats up a lot of time, and time is costly. For us to process an RFP, you need someone with business insight to answer the business questions and someone from the technical team to deal with the technical side.”
He said the specific technical questions could only be answered by a specialist and that involved making use of an engineer.
“That is expensive because we want engineers writing code,” he said.
He said the existing RFP process made Wind River slow as a company.
“That is why I was excited about the IMC programme because I wanted to see someone challenge the process,” he said. “With an RFP template, the hypothesis is that if you have a customer who is interested, rather than writing an RFP for them we can be proactive and give them the template and that means the questions they ask will be less. This should reduce the administration burden.”
He said it he did not know yet how it would work in practice.
“Some of the questions I get in RFPs are unique,” he said. “Each customer has their own lens through which they look at the world, and that is reflected in their RFPs. You can’t account for everything that someone talks about. However, having a template will definitely help. We hope this will reduce the sales cycle time.”
He said he expected the template to evolve over time, but “you have to put a stake in the ground. You have to try. It is like software, it is an iterative approach.”