After the Department of Homeland Security cancelled the $1.5 billion Flexible Agile Support for the Homeland (FLASH) procurement May 26, the vendor community was irritated, and rightfully so. This Small Business (SB) set-aside, procured through the DHS Procurement Innovation Lab (PIL), required time, money, and expertise to undertake a technical challenge. Bidders had to demonstrate specialized skills in the incremental Agile software development methodology with rapid prototyping and better user interfaces. Numerous protests and a cancelled procurement After 111 companies applied for a spot on this IDIQ through a process that included limited written proposals, a three-minute initial video, and a four-hour live technology demonstration, DHS made 11 awards that were quickly the subject of 35 separate protests by 10 bidders. Protests centered around numerous mistakes made in the evaluation process. When DHS subsequently cancelled the procurement after six months, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) dismissed the protests. Industry outcry … Continue reading DHS FLASH 2.0: Should you invest in this procurement?
Proposal professionals use the term wired to refer to a request for proposal (RFP) they believe is rigged to ensure one company wins. Customers rig an RFP by using specific requirements and evaluation criteria that favor one company versus the competition. Although there are many ways to wire an RFP, here are 10 common methods: Customers select an acquisition vehicle that severely limits the competitive field Resumes are required for all or most positions, even non-management positions Resume requirements reflect obscure or hard-to-find skills, education, or certifications Evaluation criteria (usually >60%) is weighted in favor of resumes and past performance Threshold for using a past performance reference limits the competition Technical requirements are so specific only an incumbent could respond to them Customer’s objectives and technical requirements are so vague they are hard to interpret RFP asks the offeror to respond to multiple sample task orders that are specific Turnaround … Continue reading A 360 degree view of wired RFPs
We’re excited to introduce our latest book to you—10 steps to creating high-scoring proposals: A modern perspective on proposal development and what really matters—now available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Here’s an overview of our new book. (You can find out more about our other five books here.) Introduction Beth Wingate, President Bob Lohfeld developed the 10 steps to creating high-scoring proposals presentation that he and I expanded into this book to share our modern perspective on proposal management and what matters within the proposal process with our customers. We’re using these 10 steps to help our customers concentrate on what’s really important in proposal development and on best practices that may have fallen to the wayside because of different priorities within their organizations. In this book, Bob will walk you through the source selection decision-making process and what the government evaluators and the final decision maker look … Continue reading NEW Lohfeld book released – 10 steps to creating high-scoring proposals: A modern perspective on proposal development and what really matters
Innovation is not simply about new ideas. It is also about responding rapidly and effectively to changing market conditions. The Federal Government is gradually emulating successful commercial market innovations such as category management, Agile procurement, and performance-based acquisition. Capture and proposal professionals must understand these trends and respond effectively with new and/or improved strategies and processes. Category management Category management is a purchasing concept whereby like supplies and/or services are grouped into similar categories. The purpose is to achieve more-effective competition while reducing costs and risks as well as gaining access to greater innovation from suppliers. Department of Defense (DoD) Better Buying Power initiatives as well as Office of Management and Budget (OMB) category management policy related to laptops and desktops, software licensing, and mobile devices and services are all aimed at allowing the Federal Government to act as a single efficient enterprise by sharing best practices and information. Innovative … Continue reading Procurement innovation