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Request for Information

A Request for Information (RFI) is a proposal requested from a potential seller or a service provider to determine what products and services are potentially available in the marketplace to meet a buyer's needs and to know the capability of a seller in terms of offerings and strengths of the seller. RFIs are commonly used on major procurements, where a requirement could potentially be met through several alternate means. An RFI, however, is not an invitation to bid, is not binding on either the buyer or sellers, and may or may not lead to an RFP or (RFQ).

RFI must inform the reader of the issuing organization's goal and how it tentatively plans to achieve it. The information may be in a range of different formats, including comments and data. The organisation issuing the RFI should not only be able to collect the information it seeks, but it should also be able to compare suppliers in order to choose the one from which it would like to receive rescue equipment.

Request for Proposal (RFP) and Request for Tender (RFT) are similar to RFI. An RFP is a specific request for suppliers to bid for a service or contract. A response to a RFI requires very specific information about the supplier, such as corporate information including financial records and technical capabilities. Request for Quotation (RFQ) is used in place of RFP when price is the determining factor in choosing a supplier.

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