Request for Information (RFI)

What is a Request for Information (RFI) ?

Definition of Request for Information (RFI) in Construction
Formal notification that there is a question on the project that needs to be addressed.

An RFI is normally issued by the contractor or subcontractor, and the recipient is normally the architect or the appropriate engineer. An RFI can be as simple as the color of a product, to a major structural component concern, or confusion regarding a construction detail or specification. The RFI can also be used to document certain issues on a project such as incorrect dimensions, incorrect detailing, etc. An RFI log is maintained by the contractor to ensure that the RFI information is properly managed and that answers to the questions are received in a timely manner.

The American Institute of Architects has a formal RFI procedure and documents that contractors can use and follow. However, the basic intent of the RFI is to provide a vehicle to formally address a question and provide a platform for the answer. RFI management and control is an essential part of a construction managers obligations on a project. A properly managed and coordinated RFI system is essential to the success of the project and a basic tool in the management of questions and answers.