Proposal Template and Guidelines
Overall guidelines and things to remember:
Chances are great that this document will end up in the hands of others like the CFO, CEO and
Poor grammar and typos are a negative reflection on you and AuditForce;
Always have someone else read your proposal before delivering it to the customer;
Your name is on the document – make sure it reflects your high standards;
Utilize our Lotus Notes server to review proposals that your peers are issuing;
Always use “Times New Roman” font to reflect our corporate logo-type. Generally use 10 point type
for print size;
There is no need to include company background information in the proposal. You can attach our
one-page executive summary to the proposal, if desired. This collateral piece is available at your
Consider using the AuditForce optional pre-printed proposal cover sheet to add polish to your final
The market loves our approach to proposals: short and sweet!
Individual Addressee Name
AuditForce, Inc. is pleased to present this proposal to provide XYZ Company with professional services.
(Company Name) Business Issue(s)
This is perhaps the most critical section of the document. It is the place where you demonstrate that you
have listened to and understood the client’s issues and needs, and can summarize them briefly. It is
important to avoid using language that can be interpreted as undermining the potential client’s or their
staff’s abilities. Instead, the description should show support of their efforts. The length of this section is
dependent on the complexity of the engagement. This is a great place to truly differentiate AuditForce from
the competition. With our Lotus Notes server housing a growing library of actual proposals, I encourage
you to use already existing proposals on your subject matter as a starting point.
Example: XYZ Company has a need to supplement the internal audit department staff during the next
twelve months. Recent resource constraints have left the internal audit plan for 1998 behind schedule and
in jeopardy of not being fully completed for the first time in many years. XYZ seeks experienced outside
resources to help meet the internal audit plan schedule for this year.
Internal audits to be conducted include several plant audits, an operational audit for shipping and receiving
at XYZ’s Green Bay, Wisconsin facility, and audits for advertising and freight with certain external
This is where you propose how we will solve the company’s particular business issue detailed in the
preceding section. It includes timing, deadlines, process, etc.
Example: AuditForce will dedicate experienced internal auditors to XYZ for approximately the next two
months to work on several different internal audits. We understand that audit programs are already
prepared for these audits and our professional staff will generally be working as a member of an XYZ audit
team. A start date of March 9 would coincide with the first audit of this type.
Project Staffing, Project Management & Deliverables
This section details who will be involved in executing and managing the project and what the final
deliverable will be. Be very careful about specifically naming our staff, but always name a project
manager or director. This is not the place where we tell the customer how we will “delight” them. That
should always be an unexpected surprise!
During this engagement, AuditForce professional staff will be directly managed and supervised by an XYZ
Company internal audit manager. John Smith, one of our Internal Audit Directors, will visit the audit sites
periodically to review the quality and progress of the work being performed by our staff. AuditForce will
follow standards for work-paper formats and reporting techniques currently used by XYZ Company as our
deliverable for this engagement.
Note: In this case, we might follow up the two-month engagement with a letter that points out how other
clients are attacking a similar audit issue in a different way. We don’t tell this client there is a better way
to audit, but giving them some of AuditForce’s best practice data adds value. It is not even so much what
you say, but the fact that you shared information about best practices that counts! Of course, always be
confidential about using other client names and identities.
Prior to the execution of this project, AuditForce will meet with representatives from XYZ Company to
finalize the scope and objectives of the engagement and to identify documents and reports that may be
needed to complete the assignment. At the same time, the timing of fieldwork, interim meetings, the
completion date, and the reporting format will be established.
All customers go quickly to this section. We spell out hourly bill rates, project management rates (if
applicable) and out-of-pocket expenses (if applicable). Be sure too clearly detail how local travel expenses
are to be handled such as staff commuting, parking, etc.
Example: AuditForce will provide an experienced professional to XYZ Company, which will determine
the actual hours for each week. The hourly rate is $XX.XX, with no rate premium for overtime hours
AuditForce is responsible for the quality of our work product and will assign, John Smith, (title), to your
engagement for quality control purposes. (If project management is to be billed) XYZ Company will be
billed for his project management time at an hourly rate of $________. It is estimated that project
management hours will be ____% of the total hours for this project. (If project management is not to be
billed) XYZ Company will not be billed for his project management time.
All out-of-town travel expenses will be billed at reasonable and actual expense to XYZ Company for
remote location audits, which are expected during this two-month engagement. If requested, AuditForce
will follow all XYZ Company travel policy guidelines.
Generally, this should be the standard paragraph used in each proposal. If you are going to have any
special invoicing terms, be sure to customize this section accordingly.
AuditForce invoices are sent bi-weekly and are due 15 days from the invoice date. Your cooperation in
following these guidelines will enable us to continue to provide you with the best value in the marketplace.
We also believe consistent and timely invoicing helps our customers track hours and costs accumulating on
their projects for optimal internal project management.
I have also attached our standard year 2000 services agreement which contains some additional terms and
conditions concerning our services to you. Before we begin our efforts on your behalf, please execute and
return one copy of the services agreement as well.
Benefits of Using AuditForce
This is an opportunity to summarize the benefits of an AuditForce solution. No great need to be creative or
re-invent the wheel here – our generic benefits apply to many types of engagements. One or two customized
benefits and some of our generic benefits are probably best. Use bullets and keep them quick and easy to
A customized AuditForce solution delivers many benefits to XYZ Company including:
Experience: Utilizing a professional with real-world industry experience.
Independence: Avoiding any conflict of interest issues.
Customer Satisfaction: Jointly creating a tailored customer satisfaction survey at the start of the
engagement so we are measured and evaluated on what’s important to you.
Flexibility: Providing a high quality, flexible resource to complete your 1998 internal audit plan on
Confidentiality: AuditForce maintains the confidentiality of all information disclosed by the customer.
In recognition of your changing and evolving environment, this project can be cancelled at any time
for any reason.
As our customer, all work papers belong to you.
Closing the proposal should be simple and short.
We at AuditForce appreciate this opportunity to provide XYZ Company with this proposal for professional
services. If you approve of its contents, we are committed to earning your loyalty by providing excellent
operating solutions to internal audit, tax and financial executives.
I will call you by Friday, March 2, to answer any questions you may have. Thank you for considering our
Your name and title
Please indicate your acceptance of this proposal by signing and returning this document by fax or
Accepted by: ______________________________________