A process in which buyers request potential suppliers, who are direct competitors, for a proposed purchase or contract. There is usually a short list of suppliers who are requested to submit bids simultaneously by means of a request for proposal. The request for proposal usually includes a detailed specification of the requirement, the standards sought, the terms of delivery, the contract, and the due date of the bid. This is the usual way of winning business in a business-to-business environment and less used in a consumer environment. Competitive bidding is the preferred way of government and public authorities' buying processes. It is usually accompanied by intensive negotiations and presentations.