What to Look for When Hiring a Capture Manager

Hiring the right capture manager(s) is crucial for an organization’s success. But what exactly should you be looking for? We turned to the best source available—bid and proposal industry professionals—to answer this question. We recently conducted a LinkedIn survey with 108 respondents to uncover the essential skills and traits necessary for a capture manager to thrive. The insights were illuminating.

The survey posed the question: What do you look for when you hire a capture manager? Here are the results:

  • Project Management: 6%
  • Relationship Building: 22%
  • Analytical/Solutioning Skills: 13%
  • All of the above or other: 58%

This result is a testament to the multifaceted nature of the capture manager’s role. It’s not just about being a strong project manager or having relationships with customers; it’s about a holistic skill set that can address the dynamic challenges of a capture.

For further insight, we turned to three experienced capture managers.

  • The first looked for excellent relationship-building and networking skills. This capture manager wanted a candidate to have the ability to build strong, trusted relationships with clients, stakeholders, and team members.
  • The second wanted any new capture manager to understand the technical aspects of the bids and proposals and thoroughly understand industry trends and changes since this knowledge helps craft compelling and relevant proposals.
  • The third agreed with the first two but also wanted a candidate with excellent verbal and written communication so they could articulate the solution and persuade customers of its merit.

Key Takeaways When Hiring Your Next Capture Manager

Based on our survey and expert opinions, here are key takeaways to consider when hiring your next Capture Manager:

  • Multifaceted Skill Set: Strong project management, solution engineering, analytical, and communication skills.
  • Problem-Solving and Decision-Making: The ability to quickly identify problems, develop solutions, and make sound decisions under pressure.
  • Financial Acumen: Comprehensive understanding of cost estimation, budgeting, and financial analysis to verify that proposals are competitive and profitable.
  • Adaptability and Flexibility: The ability to adapt to changing customer circumstances and pivot strategies as needed to generate a compelling bid.
  • Team Leadership and Collaboration: The ability to lead and motivate a diverse team, most of whom are not direct reports.
  • Grace Under Pressure: The ability to handle stress and maintain composure despite tight deadlines, even given changing executive priorities.


The quest to hire the ideal capture manager demands a nuanced approach that goes beyond traditional criteria. The insights from our LinkedIn survey and the wisdom shared by seasoned capture managers underscore the importance of a multifaceted skill set. A capture manager who embodies this holistic skill set is an asset and a catalyst for success, driving the organization forward with innovative solutions, strategic insights, and the ability to turn challenges into opportunities.

As you hire your next Capture Manager, consider these insights as a guiding compass. Look for a candidate who not only meets the technical requirements of the role but also brings a dynamic blend of leadership, strategic thinking, and resilience.

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By Brenda Crist, Vice President at Lohfeld Consulting Group, MPA, CPP APMP Fellow

Lohfeld Consulting Group has proven results specializing in helping companies create winning captures and proposals. As the premier capture and proposal services consulting firm focused exclusively on government markets, we provide expert assistance to government contractors in Capture Planning and Strategy, Proposal Management and Writing, Capture and Proposal Process and Infrastructure, and Training. In the last 3 years, we’ve supported over 550 proposals winning more than $170B for our clients—including the Top 10 government contractors. Lohfeld Consulting Group is your “go-to” capture and proposal source! Start winning by contacting us at www.lohfeldconsulting.com and join us on LinkedInFacebook, YouTube(TM) and X (Twitter).

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Brenda Crist