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Hunting RFPs

If a company wants to do business with federal, state or local governments, first it must answer a request for proposal (RFP). But finding RFPs and monitoring them can be difficult because they are posted in many different places, said Jeff Xie, president of JXE Inc., a St. Paul-based software consulting firm. So JXE developed a "Government RFP Finder and Notification system," at http:www.findRFP.com, that finds RFPs based on keywords and geographic criteria. It then sends businesses matching RFPs via e-mails. About 99 percent of the RFPs are online, Xie said.

JXE first built the system for internal use. "We were looking for government business, and we found there were too many government sites," he said.

Several hundred businesses have subscribed so far, Xie said. He expects to have a couple of thousand subscribers by the end of the year. JXE offers three price plans. The Monthly Plan, for example, finds RFPs in specified geographic regions or up to three states and costs $13.95 a month.



JXE software scouts Web for government work

JXE Inc., a Woodbury-based consulting firm, has developed on online tool that searches government Web sites for potential contracts and alerts users that a potential job may be up for bidding.

The software, called Government RFP Finder, is a subscription service that actively hunts out government "requests for proposals" - an early step in any procurement process or contract. Users can customize the service to look for certain types of jobs, said JXE president Jeff Xie.

Without assistance from services such as RFP Finder, Xie said companies often had to manually seek out prospective jobs among thousands of RFPs. The Web service is bolstered by human editors to make sure results are accurate.

Xie didn't initially intend for JXE to offer the software commercially. It was designed for internal use by the firm to save time. But customers kept requesting the service, he said.

"The most reliable sector in the economy right now is the government," Xie said. "People want to take advantage of that."






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