Creating an RFP for Enterprise Social Networks

Write effective requests for proposals (RFPs) and requests for information (RFIs) for Enterprise Social Networks (ESNs)

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Enterprise Social Networks (ESNs), or Communities, as they’re sometimes called, are shifting as workers are seeking new and easier ways of sharing knowledge. There are many enterprises that still struggle with the purpose of an ESN, while others have harnessed this collaborative technology to enable knowledge sharing across the enterprise. 

A Community acts as a Knowledge Network that combines content, information, and tacit knowledge (expertise that people know). Enterprises that have harnessed this power of Social Collaboration have done so by having clear use cases and active communities. Going forward, the challenge for enterprises will be getting the right information to knowledge workers who may be on the go. 

To help you get bids from these vendors, this toolkit contains sample content for a Enterprise Social Network request for proposal (RFP) that you can cut and paste into any RFP form or template and modify to meet your specifications. 

The RFP process is one of the best ways to ensure successful procurements. It gives all your bidders the same view of exactly what you want, so they can accurately calculate their costs and make their proposals responsive. By providing a common form and format for all the responses, with a consistent framework to compare them in, an RFP gives you more confidence that what you buy will meet your needs.


Aragon Research is publishing this guide to help buyers write effective requests for proposals (RFPs) and requests for information (RFIs) for Enterprise Social Networks (ESNs). 

This book is divided into two parts. This section, Part I, is addressed to you, the buyer, who is setting out to write an RFP. It explains some of the ways you can use an RFP to make your procurement financially safe and technically satisfying. 

Because RFPs are legally binding and financially consequential, but can also be technically intricate, repetitive and tedious to create, we have compiled the content of a typical RFP for enterprise social network software, which is contained in Part II. As an Aragon Research client, you are free to copy and paste this content into your own RFP template and then customize it to fit your specific situation. If you have never done an RFP before, work with your legal and financial staff to develop the rest of the necessary content. 

In Part II, everything that is not in italics is intended to be part of your actual RFP, and is addressed to the vendors you send it to. The material in italics is for you, the buyer. Be sure to remove everything in italics before sending the RFP to bidders. 

Toolkit Note Details

Topic: Enterprise social network
Issue: What do the major enterprise social network providers offer and how do they compete?
Research Note Number: 2021-T12

Length: 29 pages
File Size: .5 MB
File Type: Portable Document Format (PDF)
Language: English
Publisher: Aragon Research

Jim Lundy

Jim Lundy , CEO and Lead Analyst

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