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Create an RFI

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Objective

To create a Request for Information (RFI) using the project's RFIs tool.

Background

In the construction industry, RFIs are used to clarify ambiguities, answer questions, and fill information gaps that occur during the construction process. A common scenario for creating an RFI is when a subcontractor or superintendent requires specific information about completing a job or task from the project's architect or engineer. For example, a project drawing might be unclear, a requirement may be vague, or a product specification might be outdated, inaccurate, or incomplete. In such cases, it's important that questions are answered as quickly and succinctly as possible to prevent miscommunication, project delays, and/or rework.

In Procore, RFIs are comprised of the following components:

  • General Information. To make sure that a question is interpreted properly, it's important to include any additional information that provides related background information and context about the specific question, issue, or ambiguity. 
  • Question. A formal question related to the construction project that requires a response from another person. For example, a subcontractor might submit the question on an RFI because a construction document or product specification is ambiguous. Questions can also be asked on behalf of another person/vendor. 
  • Replies: A reply sent by an assignee on the RFI. For example, a project engineer might provide a reply to a subcontractor's question to clarify an ambiguous specification.
  • Official Response: A reply (or multiple replies) that have been designated as the 'Official Response' for the RFI. The 'RFI Manager' completes this designation.

To view a common workflow of the RFI process, view the Interactive Workflow Diagram.

Things to Consider

  • Required User Permission:
    • To create an RFI in the 'Draft' or 'Open' status, a user must have 'Admin' permissions on the project's RFIs tool.
    • To create an RFI in the 'Draft' status, a user must have 'Standard' on the project's RFIs tool.
      Note: To learn about 'Draft' RFIs, see What is a 'Draft' RFI? and Who can view a 'Draft' RFI?
  • Requirements:
    • To save an RFI in the 'Open' status, the following fields are required: Subject, Assigned To, and Question.
      Note: An RFI number (#) is strongly recommended, but not required. See How does Procore assign numbers to RFIs?
  • Additional Information:
    • To provide a user with 'Standard' or 'Read-only' level permissions with the ability to receive email notifications about RFI updates, you must add the user to the RFI's Distribution List, even if that user created the RFI. 
    • After creating an RFI in the 'Open' status, Procore sends an automated email notification to the 'Assignee(s)' and members of the RFI's Distribution list. 
    • An RFI can be assigned to one (1) or more persons:
      • The system designates the assignee(s) as the Ball In Court person.
      • The assignee(s) has several options when responding to the RFI. See Respond to an RFI.
  • Supported Platforms:
    • Procore Web
    • Procore for iOS
    • Procore for Android
    • Procore for Windows

Video

Steps

  1. Navigate to the project's RFIs tool.
  2. Click Create RFI.


     
  3. In the General tab, complete the form with the appropriate information. (Required fields are highlighted with a *.)

    rfi-details.png
     
    • RFI #. Procore automatically assigns numbers to new RFIs in sequential order. For example, 1, 2, 3, and so on. Duplicate numbers are not permitted when creating an RFI. However, you can edit one at a later time should you need to create an RFI with a duplicate number. See Can I create an RFI with a duplicate number? To learn about other options for RFI numbering, see What options do I have for numbering RFIs in Procore?

    • Draft. Place a checkmark in this box to create an RFI in the 'Draft' status. Remove the checkmark to create an 'Open' RFI. The entry in the Question box can only be changed when an RFI is in the 'Draft' status. Users with 'Standard' level permission can only create draft RFIs in Procore. Users with 'Admin' level permission can create an RFI in any status. To learn more about 'Draft' RFIs, see What is a Draft RFI? and Who can view a 'Draft' RFI?

    • Subject*. Provide a descriptive title for the RFI. The RFI's subject is displayed as the RFI's title in the list view.

    • RFI Manager. Select an RFI Manager from the drop-down list. See What is the RFI Manager role?
      Notes:

      • By default, the name of designated RFI Manager appears here. See Designate the Default RFI Manager for a Project's RFIs.
      • If you are a user with 'Admin' level permission, select a user with 'Standard' or 'Admin' level permission from the list. 
      • If you are a user with 'Standard' level permission, the list only populates with the names of users who have 'Admin' level permission to the RFIs tool 
    • Assigned To*. Assign responsibility for submitting a response to the RFI question to one or more project team members. These users will be listed as the Ball In Court for the RFI (Note: A user with 'Standard' level permission to the RFIs tool can only select users with 'Admin' level permission from the Assigned To list).The system sends an automated email notification to a new assignee with the subject line, "You have been assigned to this RFI." 

    • Due Date. Select the date by which you require a response from the Assigned To person. By default, created RFIs are due within three (3) calendar days. However, a user with 'Admin' permissions on the RFI tool can customize the due date setting. See Configure Advanced Settings: RFIs.

    • Responsible Contractor. This is automatically prefilled with the company associated with the person who is creating the RFI, as defined by the "Question Received From" field.

    • Question Received From. Select the name of the person who requested the information. An 'Admin' or 'Standard' user may create an RFI on behalf of a subcontractor who does not have 'Standard' permissions on the RFIs tool. It's important to remember that the person will not be emailed unless he or she is on the distribution list.

    • Distribution. Add users with 'Read-Only level permission or higher to the RFI's distribution list. Depending on the user's permission level, they can respond to the RFI using at least one of several methods. For details, see Respond to an RFI.

    • Location. Select the location pertaining the RFI from the drop-down list. 
      Note: If Procore is configured to allow users to create locations (see Allow or Disallow Users to Create Locations Within a Tool), you can click the Create a New Location button at the bottom of the list. 

    • Drawing Number: You can manually input a drawing number into this field. However, the recommended process to associate an RFI to a drawing is to Link an RFI to a Drawing.

    • Spec Section. Select the relevant section from your spec book. See Where do the selections from the 'Spec Sections' drop-down list come from?

    • Cost Code. Select a cost code for the RFI. This links the RFI to the cost code, which is helpful later, should the RFI's scope of work affect the project's budget and result in a change order. See Create a Potential Change Order (PCO).

    • Schedule Impact: Specify whether or not you think this RFI might impact the current project schedule. If you know the approximate schedule impact, you can enter the estimated number of days. You may also choose 'Yes (Unknown) ' or 'TBD' and add the schedule impact at a later time.
    • Reference: An optional field that can serve as a helpful reference tag. Double-click to get a list of recently used references.
    • Cost Impact:
      Choose one of the following selections from the drop-down list:
      • Yes. If there is a known cost impact associated with the RFI, select 'Yes' and then enter a numeric value in the text box that appears (Note: Entering a comma (,) is not permitted in this field).  
      • Yes (Unknown). If the RFI will have a cost impact, but the amount is currently unknown, select this option. (Note: You can edit the RFI at a later time.) 
      • No. If the RFI does not have a cost impact, select 'No.'
      • TBD. If you are uncertain whether the RFI has a cost impact, select the 'TBD' (To Be Determined) option if it's unknown at the current time.
      • N/A. If the cost impact is irrelevant to the RFI, you can select 'N/A' (Not Applicable)
    • Private: Mark this checkbox to limit the RFI's visibility to just yourself and users with 'Admin' permissions to the RFIs tool, the Assigned To person, and members of the item's distribution list. Leave the checkbox unmarked to make the RFI visible to all users with 'Read-only' level permissions or above on the RFIs tool. 
    • Ball In Court. Select whether you want the Ball In Court (BIC) person for the RFI to be assigned to the Assignees, Creator, or RFI Manager. 
    • Custom Fields 1 & 2: If you have selected to have custom fields appear in your RFIs tab (see Configure Advanced Settings: RFIs), they will appear in the creation page as shown.

      create an rfi 4.png
       
    • Question:* Enter your question and any additional background information that may be needed to properly answer the question (Note: This entry can only be changed at a later time if the RFI is saved in the 'Draft' status. Once an RFI is saved in the 'Open' status, the question cannot be changed). 
    • Attachments: You can add attachments either from your computer, Procore (e.g. Documents, Drawings, or Photos) or other sources. For example, you could attach files from an integrated Box account. (See Configure the Procore + Box Integration)
  4. Click Create.
    Depending on the status of the RFI, the system does the following:
    (Note: If you attempt to create an RFI with a duplicate number, a pop-up message appears to alert you. See Can I create an RFI with a duplicate number?
    • If the RFI is in 'Draft' mode, Procore adds the RFI to the tool's Draft list. 
      OR
    • If the RFI is not in 'Draft' mode, Procore adds the RFI to the tool's Open list. An email notification is also sent to the Assignees and members of the item's Distribution list.

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