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
Federal Government source selection officials are very likely to review your bid electronically rather than in hard copy. Telework is here to stay, and federal proposal evaluators working from home are unlikely to print thousands of pages from multiple bids. Even in the office, printing large documents is wasteful and not environmentally friendly. In addition, over-worked government evaluators look for ways to speed the evaluation process. Increasingly, government evaluators rely on automation to help them efficiently review proposals. Whether the Source Selection Evaluation Board (SSEB) members are using acquisition software to check compliance and document findings or simply the search and find features of MS Word or Adobe Acrobat, they must be able to find content quickly and easily. An important part of planning before you write is identifying important key words for automated content searches. Using key words is not the same as parroting back RFP requirements. It is … Continue reading Five tips to help evaluators find key words (and winning content)
The General Services Administration (GSA) issued the final Multiple Award Contract (MAC) RFPs for the Polaris women-owned Small Business (WOSB) and Small Business (SB) pools on March 25. This much anticipated information technology (IT) solicitation is the replacement for the Alliant 2 Small Business solicitation ($15 billion ceiling) which never made it to the final RFP. The Polaris government-wide acquisition contract (GWAC) will eventually include four different pools: SB, WOSB, historically underutilized business (HUB) zones as well as service disabled veteran-owned small businesses (SDVOSB), replacing VETS 2. While 8(a) firms do not have a separate pool, they can apply for any of the Polaris pools for which they qualify as they await the STARS III RFP. Pre-Award Protests Almost as soon as the RFP was released, the first Polaris pre-award protest quickly followed. BD Squared filed a protest with the Government Accountability Office (GAO) on March 29 regarding provisions in … Continue reading Polaris Pre-Award Protest: The New Normal for MACs?
There is a saying that either your past performance is an “A or an F” because your competition only provides grade A past performance. In a close competition your past performance could be the difference between a win and second place. Help customers recognize your outstanding performance by providing metrics, proof points, and facts that are critical to earning the top grade. Consider using any of the following 50 words or phrases to call attention to your exceptional performance. Words Ability Accomplish Achieve Additional Advance Award Best Capability Capacity Certified Competence Decrease Earn Enhance Exceed Excel Experience Expertise Gain Groundbreaking Improved Increase Innovate Led Measure Metric Modernize More than Qualifications Reach back Realize Reduce Retain Skill Transform Phrases (Before using one of the words listed above, qualify your statement with a proof point from your experience related to a customer requirement, as demonstrated below.) Customer ABC reduced their Cloud costs … Continue reading 50 Words and Phrases that Support Past Performance Development