If you attended a proposal writing class years ago, the instructor taught you to include win themes in every major proposal section. The instructor told you to link win themes to discriminators found in your offer and that the most powerful win themes discriminated your offer from those of your competitors. While it is good to differentiate your solution from competitors, it is only part of the equation needed to win. To win, you must consider the Government’s own instructions describing how they evaluate bids when using Federal Acquisitions Regulations (FAR) Part 15 15.101 Best value continuum, as opposed to FAR Part 15.101-2, where they look for the lowest price technically acceptable bid. In FAR Part 15.305 Proposal Evaluation, the Government is clear how they evaluate best value bids, “Evaluations may be conducted using any rating method or combination of methods, including color or adjectival ratings, numerical weights, and ordinal … Continue reading The Rationale for Eliminating Win Themes in Proposals
Proposal professionals are accustomed to responding to the Federal Government’s requirements as detailed in the performance work statement (PWS) included in the RFP. Here’s what to know when the government asks you to write the PWS. According to the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Title 48 Subpart 37.101, the PWS is the preferred performance-based acquisition (PBA) approach because the focus is on “structuring all aspects of an acquisition around the purpose of the work to be performed as opposed to either the manner by which the work is to be performed or broad and imprecise statements of work.” The Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 37.602 allows either the government or the bidder to prepare the PWS. If the government issues the PWS as part of the solicitation, then bidders must respond to the requirements by presenting the features, benefits, and proofs of their proposed solution and highlighting Strengths. In contrast, highlighting a discriminating value … Continue reading Here’s what you need to know when the customer asks you to write the PWS
The National Institutes of Health Information Technology Acquisition and Assessment Center (NITAAC)’s highly anticipated Chief Information Officer – Solutions and Partners 4 (CIO-SP4) RFP, released June 25, has already seen four amendments and a proposal due date extension to July 8. But the latest amendment, #4, has caught some bidders, especially small businesses, off-guard. A Change to CIO-SP4 Self-Scoring In the original solicitation, bidders with Contractor Teaming Arrangements (CTAs) or Joint Ventures (JVs) could use only prime contractor Corporate Experience, Leading Edge Technology, Federal Multiple Award contracts, and Executive Order 13779 experience examples as documented on the self-scoring worksheet. With the exception of the latter, the higher the dollar value of these experiences, the better the score. In Amendment #4, NITAAC removed the prohibition on using first-tier subcontractor experience examples. The rationale for the change is that “it is not NITAACs intent to remove the ability of offerors to utilize first … Continue reading Does the latest CIO-SP4 amendments create inequities?
Just because COVID-19 is forcing us indoors doesn’t mean that we can’t get together and learn from one another. Recently, Lohfeld Principal Consultant and Capture expert Dr. Doug Himberger interviewed former GSA Contracts Director, Jacob Bertram. In this fifth installment, Doug asks Jacob about influencing the Acquisition process and LPTA solicitations as part of developing a strategy for winning business at an agency. For the previous installment, click here. [Doug] Let’s turn to the Acquisition process. We are often asked about low price technically acceptable (LPTA) evaluations. I would say on a personal experience that they are less common perhaps than they used to be a few years ago, but they’re still being used. And in fact, they’re being used in some areas that could sort of surprise us, in IT, cybersecurity, things like that—sort of inherently innovative bidding areas. And yet we see LPTA being used. We would love … Continue reading MULTI-PART SERIES: Influencing the Acquisition process and LPTA solicitations – Up close and personal, Part 5