A business woman smilng in front of a hotel

Procurement Strategies: Make your RFP lean and agile to face uncertain times

In Blog by Janin

As the world takes steps to recover from the Coronavirus pandemic, the corporate hospitality evolves towards the “New Normal”.

Corporations are recalibrating their managed travel programs, revising their duty-of-care guidelines, and sharpening their focus on prioritized destinations. Besides, new bundles that appropriately balance critical hygiene and safety issues with financial considerations are quickly becoming the reality. In this environment going for RFP and optimize the capacity planning are crucial for success.

Yet, how can the 2020 hotel procurement process feature advantages for both corporations and hotels?

DELAYED START OF RFP SEASON: 

While RFP season has traditionally begun in the first part of the year, RFPs have been generally postponed and delayed until the last 4 months of the year. This will allow for better responses as hotels reopen and furloughed employees return to work.

SHORTENED RFP CYCLE:

Through an innovative paralleled approach to the hotel procurement process that HRS put in development pre COVID, the negotiation timeline is shortened from an average 16 weeks to 4 weeks.

  • Multiple RFPs are launched at the same time with a one-bid request in order to improve process efficiency and reduce the burden on hotels and chains that would normally be responding to hundreds of ad hoc RFPs.
  • Data is pre-released to allow for response preparation and the ability to submit a best-and-final offer the first time.
  • Live benchmarking gives assurance to both hotels and corporates that the offer is competitive
  • Moreover, with the exclusive HRS’ Procurement Days, the largest procurement event in the lodging category, for the first time HRS brings together Chain as well as Individual Hotels and Corporations across the globe in a 1 day, creating a true marketplace for the global hospitality industry and enabling powerful direct collaboration between supply and demand.

CONTINUOUS REVIEW AND ADAPTATION OF THE PROGRAM: 

The market environment is extremely volatile, fragile and agile, therefore adapting the hotel program continuously is crucial. By utilizing historical data, we can create a solid and reliable 2021 program foundation. However, HRS recommends reassessing in late Q1 to early Q2 2021. This will provide early recovery data to consider:

  • Market price shifts in key markets
  • Travel pattern changes
  • Organizational changes
  • Hotel partner accountability
  • Any unexpected events

The corporate hospitality industry is at an unprecedented juncture. This calls for action and innovation – not inaction and complacency. Through transparent communication, partnership and agility, the industry has a unique opportunity to modernize the outdated annual RFP and create a sustainable continuous procurement process.

To learn more, download the HRS White Paper “Procurement Strategies In Covid-19 Times”.