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Model RFP Template


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  • 1. RFP Template for School Districts Seeking Audit Services Overview This section should: 1. Describe the purpose for which the school district is soliciting an RFP  General information which directs the need for the audit (laws/regulations)  Timeline for RFP submission, review and selection  Outline expected engagement calendar o Audit start date o Time frames for preliminary audit work and final fieldwork o Due date for filing of auditor’s report. Suggested wording: The District is accepting proposals from CPA firms to provide audit services. Firms must submit a proposal to us by [enter date]. The District fiscal year begins July 1 and ends June 30th. Commissioner’s Regulations require the Independent Auditor’s report to be filed by October X. In accordance with the above, the District will require that the selected firm’s assigned staff perform preliminary audit work (e.g. testing of transactions) for approximately X workdays prior to the close of the fiscal year. Final fieldwork shall begin not later than [enter date] and conclude not later than [enter date] annually. It is estimated that the actual time in the district will be between X and Y days during July and August. The District requires that the staff assigned to perform preliminary audit work prior to June 30th will be the same staff to complete the fieldwork in July and August. Suggested Wording: The firm will type and make copies of all reports on its premises and deliver 25 copies of all reports to the [enter position title of district’s designated recipient]. The annual audit report’s letter to management shall be attached to or included in the same binder with the financial statements. The firm shall advise the [enter position title of district’s designee] as to the proper promulgation of their reports in writing. The report shall be presented to the Board of Education at a regularly scheduled public meeting. [enter list of meeting attendees],
  • 2. 2. Provide background and description related to the school district  Description of the district (K-12 enrollment, list of district schools, size of budget, etc.)  Description of the Board of Education  Name of BOCES  District management structure and list of contacts  Number of employees (administrators, teachers, support staff)  Description of other important district operations (food or computer services)  Fund structure  Schedule of state and federal financial assistance  Pension plans  Description of financial software programs used  Three-year history of expenditures by major object  Three-year history: number of W-2’s, purchase orders and extra classroom activity fund checks.  Availability of prior reports and papers Scope This section should: 1. Specify which financial statements will be audited and the applicable time period to be audited 2. Specify audit standards to be followed  Government Audit Standards (Yellow Book)  Standards promulgated by the State Comptroller  Regulations of the Commissioner of Education  Regulations of the Federal Government regarding federal funds  Specific guidelines from the Board of Education or Superintendent of Schools 3. Describe content of mandatory work products  Annual financial report, including Management Discussion & Analysis  Audit of extra-classroom activity funds  Single audit report (where required)  Management letter, including district’s actions to address items in previous management letter
  • 3. 4. Describe content of additional work products (if any are under consideration)  Internal controls review  Computer software review 5. Discuss work product issues (i.e. who will have access to materials and working papers) and confidentiality issues 6. Outline expectations in terms of entrance/exit conferences, progress reports, responsibility for report preparation, documentation, retention period etc. 7. List any assistance to be provided by district staff during the audit  Finance department staff  Clerical staff  Internal auditor of the district  Work area and equipment provisioning 8. Specify contract terms and conditions  Written contract with an engagement letter outlining audit scope, deliverables, and standards for performance  Sanctions for non-performance (reduction in fees, flat penalties, cost recovery)  Engagement letter should require auditor to notify SED if district terminates audit prematurely, require district to notify SED if auditor resigns from audit prematurely, and require auditor to notify SED and OSC of suspected fraud  Manner of payment  Circumstances when contract terms or procedures may be modified  Conditions for termination (district should have right to terminate at any time upon reasonable notice)  Overall supervision of the contract  Options for annual contract renewals/extensions up to no more than 5 years  Indication that services must be subject to a competitive RFP process at least every 5 years, and that prior experience with the school district may be a factor taken into account during scoring (i.e. scoring preference may be given to firm or partner rotation). 9. Explain how and when the district will address questions or communicate modifications to RFP
  • 4.  Should be communicated in writing to all respondents  Proposals cannot be changed after submission unless subsequent modifications to RFP by the district make a proposal unresponsive RFP Requirements This section specifies the information to be included in the firm’s proposal: 1. Qualifications and experience of the firm  Size of the firm  Level and type of auditing experience  Experience with governmental auditing, including list of prior engagements  Experience with school district auditing, including list of prior engagements  Client references  Peer review Suggested wording: Firms submitting proposals should be of a sufficient size to ensure stability and responsiveness during the engagement. Firms submitting proposals shall provide information about their size as well as their local government and school district experience. A listing of local government and school district references is requested. 2. Qualifications and experience of the firm’s staff  Licensing  Proposed staffing (level, hours)  Experience of partner or manager in charge  Experience of audit staff  Resumes and references (from government or school district sources)  Affirmation that all staff have met CPE requirements for government auditing  RFP may include wording that allows school district to reject staff it feels does not have appropriate experience or qualifications to conduct the audit Suggested wording: The district is interested in the level and type of government auditing experience of those persons to be assigned as auditor(s) and/or manager. Brief resumes
  • 5. and listing of governmental or school district contacts to attest to their experience should be included. The Board of Education or the District reserves the right to reject staff who they feel do not have appropriate experience or qualifications to conduct the audit. 3. Proposed work plan  Interim work and entrance conference  Details of audit plan, including level of testing, field work, etc.  Draft report and exit conference  Final report (must be presented to the district board of education)  Samples of above items 4. Proposed fee structure  Hourly rate per audit staff  Other fees and expenses (do not include RFP preparation, travel or out- of-pocket expenses, etc.)  Flat rate or “not to exceed” maximum price  Rates for any optional (desirable) work products  Distinguish one time costs from ongoing costs 5. Affirmation that no conflicts of interest exist between the firm and the district, its board or its management Organization, Content and Presentation of Proposals This section provides greater detail as to the format and presentation of the proposal:  Title page  Letter of transmittal  Table of contents  Qualifications of the firm and assigned staff  Work plan  Fees  Number of copies required, deadline for submission and mailing instructions  Option for oral RFP presentations if the district so chooses Suggested wording: -Fees-
  • 6. Each proposal will clearly state the fees to be charged to the District for the annual audit of all funds of the District for the year ended [enter date, continue for each year of the duration] This fee should be a flat annual rate and include necessary expenses. The fee should also cover follow-up work and provide for advice and counsel to the staff throughout the term of this contract. Each proposal will also state the basis on which special audit or management or services fees will be billed. -Firm staff- It is fully expected that the personnel indicated will be those assigned to the project. Please provide an affirmation statement that those assigned have met all the continuing professional education (CPE) requirements necessary to satisfy the United States General Accounting Office (GAO) standards. Also, provide the name(s) of individuals in the firm that will be available throughout the term of the contract for continuing advice and counsel. -Mailing instructions- All proposals must be received by the [enter position title of district’s designee] no later than [enter date and time]. Any proposals received after this deadline will be returned unopened to the firm. Each firm shall submit one original proposal and X copies to the following address: [Enter contact information] The envelope shall be labeled “Audit Proposal.” All proposals and accompanying documentation become the property of the [enter district name]. The District shall not divulge any information presented in the RFP to anyone outside the District without the written approval of the firm. Evaluation of Proposals This section details how each RFP will be evaluated:  “Lowest responsible bidder” –type standard  Specific scoring criteria and weighting factors  Method to evaluate cost portion of RFP  Selection timetables  Circumstances under which a proposal may be disqualified or rejected  Standards for timeliness, quality and performance  District reserves the right to reject all proposals
  • 7. Suggested wording: THE BOARD OF EDUCATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO ACCEPT OR REJECT ANY OR ALL PROPOSALS OR ANY PARTS OF PROPOSALS. The original copy of all proposals received will be kept on file in [enter location]. Copies will be distributed as follows: [enter distribution list] Week beginning [enter date]: Meeting to consider all proposals Week beginning [enter date]: Evaluate firms, and check references Week beginning [enter date]: Meeting to prepare recommendation [Enter date]: Board of Education appoints Independent Auditor -Scoring criteria- • Qualifications – experience of firm, size and experience of staff, educational background, specialized skills • Number of people, by level, that would be assigned to the audit, and their government auditing experience • Number of New York State school districts that the firm has audited, including total years of service • Results of Peer Review • Audit approach – type of audit program, use of district’s staff, time frame • • Cost and fee structure Results and Contract Award Process This section should outline the contract award process:  Award notification timeline (generally 45 days after RFP deadline)  Letters to be sent to all respondents  Award should be subject to successful contract negotiations