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Request for Tender (RFT)

A request for tender is a structured invitation to suppliers for the supply of products and/or services. It's also abbreviated to RFT.

As a consequence of the scale and complexity of the tender process the majority of RFT’s are published by government sector agencies at the local, state and federal levels. Companies in the infrastructure and utilities sectors may also periodically publish RFT’s

The closest equivalent to an request for tender in the mainstream private sector is a request for proposal, which typically has a less rigid structure.

An request for tender is usually an open invitation for suppliers to respond to a defined need as opposed to a request being sent to selected potential suppliers. The request for tender often requests information gathered previously from a RFI. This will usually not only cover product and service requirements, but will also ask for information about the suitability of the business.