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  • Writer's pictureSander Priivits

RFQ Management and Excel – end of a love story?

Updated: May 21, 2020

With its ability to process mathematical equations, store and organize data in understandable and manageable ways, and create a variety of what-if scenarios, Microsoft Excel has long provided a critical function to businesses. Yet, its 2020 and many industries and businesses, including freight forwarders feel the need for more modernized technology. Is it time to abandon Excel for critical business processes such as freight tendering? Excel is in many ways inefficient, yet especially many industries, including freight forwarding heavily rely on it. In the context of Tender Management (that our team is very passionate about) do we expect SME’s or even large enterprises to send their RFQ’s out in any other form than Excel in 2020 and beyond? No! Realistically, no one is getting rid of their Excel licenses, and every one of these solutions that promises to replace Excel has an “Export to Excel” button. Excel is powerful and endlessly customizable. ERP lacks flexibility and there will always be something you can’t do in your ERP. Therefore @Sourcify we believe that spreadsheets are here to stay whereas the role of Excel itself is declining from central ecosystem into supporting function such as front-end (interface) for data review. Web-based software applications and database solutions are emerging instead, accompanied by integrations providing businesses with instant and error-free data.


If you are a Freight Forwarder what would this mean for you?

It’s time to invest in technology. Yes, the times in a post COVID-19 are uncertain, especially for shipping industry. What is certain – the focus of the shippers and cargo owners will be on finding reliable suppliers to move their freight and ensure supply chain reliability (plus the obvious – cost saving!). Cargo owners and shippers will be issuing more tenders going forward – anything from quarterly to annual rates (1 - 4 tenders p.a.). Technology and integrations become essential for creating revenue and reducing financial and operational burden of responding to RFQ’s. And what is equally important – your employees are your biggest value, so it is essential to provide them with technology and tools to deliver the results.

If you are a Tender Manager what would this mean for you? 

Technology brings data to your fingertips – generate your freight selling tariffs within hours automatically, which used to take around 5-7 days using classical e-mail & Excel methods. Correct – your day would no longer be about manual data entry and ensuring all charge items are collected & consolidated. Instead, you can benchmark, perform complex analysis and challenge your customers’ target rates or (possibly our favourite!) pricing guidance you received from your procurement department. Being a corporate Tender Manager with access to technology is a lot of fun in 2020!

If you are a Freight Forwarder on the market searching a cost efficient, scalable and modern technology to improve your tender process, please reach out to us at Our focus is on data integration and all the features of our Tender Management suite address a specific pain point while being intuitive and super simple to implement.

Summer months mean less incoming RFQ’s which is perfect for looking out for technology and improving processes. Start preparing for 2020-2021 RFQ peak season today!

Happy tendering!

Your team at Sourcify

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