The vitality of the RFP phase when modifying with a supplemental type certificate
May 19, 2022
When you’re reworking your aircraft with a Supplemental Type Certificate, the most critical part of the process is the Request for Proposal (RFP). How can you be sure that the supplier you select will provide the best service and support? We recommend including elements traditionally not considered upfront to reduce risk and increase transparency. An effective RFP will help you obtain a successful aircraft modification. and manage the Supplemental Type Certificate throughout its life cycle.
We understand the challenges associated with RFPs because we’ve all been in those situations filled with endless questions, mismatched comparisons, scope creep and communication challenges. A well thought out request for proposal that emphasizes strong communication channels and seeks transparency helps to streamline the whole process and reduce risk.
IAMA Helps to Nail Down the RFP Process
As you can expect, we describe essential preventative measures that effectively smooth the whole process. We delve into many empowering tips, from instituting a single point of contact for each organization, modifier and airline, to including primary organization functions, to simple compliance matrices. Common sense advice is also available. Taking a holistic view of the Supplemental Type Certificate project and its complete life cycle before even putting fingers to the keyboard is vital in developing the RFP.
It’s common for traditional RFPs to omit elements that arise during aircraft modifications. The IAMA team wants to educate the market on the value of Supplemental Type Certificates, but also to empower aircraft owners and aircraft modifiers to achieve more satisfying outcomes with their RFPs. A few aspects that can have a significant effect on the success of the project include after-sales support, intellectual property and right to use, how to remove the aircraft modification at a later date, validation in other jurisdictions and maintainability. Not considering these in the request for proposal can lengthen the process, resulting in scope creep and possibly more work for the airline.
We also detail what suppliers and customers need to do, along with some prudent advice about the actual proposal itself. All the familiar elements are discussed from parts expectations to the existing aircraft configuration to data access. It’s all defined and also available from IAMA as a template. Indeed, an RFP will always come with some unknowns. However, recognizing this from the outset and having a plan for who will address these unknowns and how they will be dealt with is important for all aircraft retrofit market participants.
Indispensable Aircraft Retrofit Industry Source: The IAMA Rulebook
The IAMA Rulebook is, of course, the backbone of our organization’s response to stakeholder questions about what can be a rather challenging activity. Our alliance has taken a multifaceted approach to help create a more transparent RFP process, and dedicated a specific section in the Rulebook that at its core seeks to enhance communication between modifiers and airlines. All alliance members must adhere to the rules that result in IAMA Endorsed Supplemental Type Certificates—an emerging gold standard. Along with templates and advice, we also offer an RFP Portal. Those looking for an aircraft modification can submit RFPs through it to access capable, high-quality suppliers.