If you’re a manufacturer or distributor, one of the important aspects of evaluating quotes in from your suppliers is to perform a detailed cost-side analysis. Some quotes might seem very low or unrealistic, and as a purchaser you need to know what the detailed breakdown of costs are. You want to make sure the supplier has understood what they are quoting to reduce risk to all parties involved.
Traditional methods of quote comparison are time consuming. Excel or Word documents provide some advantage over paper-based methods, but they still aren’t enough to allow for a thorough costs comparison in a reasonable amount of time. You need to compare bids across dozens of different dimensions and suppliers have likely responded in a variety of formats. Further, they might have made several assumptions and omissions that make it difficult to understand by simply scanning the responses. It’s very likely that you have to manually correlate items by either copying data into excel and normalizing it, or printing out all the sheets to do a line by line comparison.