We received a lot of audience questions during our recent Top 20 bids for 2017 webinar. Here is part 2 of our Q&A. Question: What is the state of mergers and acquisitions and what does this mean for the competitive environment? Bob Lohfeld’s Answer: Companies go through this merger and acquisition ritual basically for two purposes. One is to realign their business strategy, and the other is to buy backlog. I think over the last several years we’ve really seen a significant realignment in the market based on strategy. The first one to do it was SAIC splitting off part of their business for organizational conflict of interest reasons. The neatest deal this year I thought was Lockheed Martin’s deal to spin off IS&GS. Everybody says it was because Lockheed Martin wanted to get out of the low-price business, but my take on it was they really wanted to buy … Continue reading Q&A Part 2 | Top 20 bids for 2017—and the market trends that will affect how you build your pipeline
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
The beginning of the year is a great time for proposal professionals to evaluate their professional development and schedule time to polish their skills. So, let’s take a test on how you would rank yourself in comparison to key competency areas defined by APMP – the Association of Record for Bid, Proposal, Business Development, Capture, and Graphics Professionals. Rank yourself on a scale of high/expert, medium/intermediate, or low/novice. Keep in mind that the Harvard Business Review indicates that 10,000 hours of practice (about 1 year and 51 days total) is what you need to gain “expertise” in a field. Functional Area Expert Intermediate Novice Capture plan development Client interface management Compliance matrix development Content plan development Executive summary development Graphics development Information gathering Kick-off meeting management Knowledge management Negotiation management Opportunity qualification Outline development Process management Production management Proposal review management Proposal strategy development Proposal strategy review Requirements identification Risk … Continue reading Rank your BD, capture, and proposal skills against APMP key competency areas
Typically, as proposal managers, we do not have complete control over who is on our response team. The team is usually some combination of who is best-suited to help win this opportunity and who is available. The team is most often comprised of professionals with varying degrees of competency, experience, and commitment. Team members may cycle in and out, depending on the phase of the proposal process or other circumstances such as re-assignment to another high priority activity, leave due to vacation or illness, or dismissal due to lack of fit. Team members may be onsite or remote, increasing the level of complexity related to team-building. Partner companies on the team may have their own agendas. So what is a proposal manager to do? Here are five ideas that I have implemented successfully: 1. Don’t get stuck storming! All teams go through five developmental stages that psychologist and educator Bruce … Continue reading Five ideas to help your teams (and yourself)!