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Good Afternoon,

  I came across this issue today and I was curious how the community handles this situation.  We sent out an RFP for HRIS software and had one vendor send us an NDA stating that they always request an NDA prior to responding to RFP’s.  I have been doing RFP’s for 20 years, and aside from a request to keep the RFP confidential, I have never been asked to sign a NDA…


  Is this unusual, or have I simply missed the vendors that make this request? 


  My first reaction is that this is an interesting hurdle that the company has erected to prevent an easy flow of business… after all, if the secret sauce was that good, why not patent it like a host of other companies?


Best regards,



Kevin Palmer

Chief Information Officer

Columbia College

1001 Rogers Street

Launer 9

Columbia, MO 65216



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Hi Kevin.


Our procurement office adds a line into the RFP that asks vendors to submit two versions of the proposals

It has been my experience to always have the vendors sign an NDA as part of the RFP process.  It just protects everyone.  We recently completed one for a WAN solution and a couple of the vendors asked us to sign their NDA which after reviewing and making a few modifications we did.


Trust that this answers your question at least from our perspective.





Wm. Kenneth Freeman


Wm. Kenneth Freeman, VP-CIO

Webster University

470 E. Lockwood Ave.

St. Louis, MO 63119-3194

Phone:   314.246.5990



I never had to sign an NDA however the vendor proposals typically have a confidential statement on them to not disclose their information.  I think that they are more concerned about pricing as opposed to their product or services.


Tilmon Smith
Howard University
Interim Executive Director
Enterprise Technology Services

Working at a public institution is different; our RFP responses are totally open and can be requested.  We would not sign an NDA on a bid response.