News & Knowledge Center

Is the government starting to hate LPTA too?

I was surprised (and relieved) to learn that government proposal evaluators are pushing back on the use of lowest price, technically acceptable (LPTA) evaluation criteria—and for good reason. They are now learning that this evaluation criteria can limit their ability to exercise reasonable judgment in the evaluation process and may result in contracts awarded to companies that are clearly inferior and have less-qualified offerings compared to others in the competition. Here are two instances where the use of LPTA evaluation criteria backfired on the government decision-makers. Superior value versus price Best-value solicitations frequently state that as technical scores converge and there is little technical difference between bidders, price will become the determining factor in an award decision. Conversely, when price converges and there is little price difference between bidders, the award decision would rationally be made based on the merits of the offeror’s non-cost factors (technical approach, offeror experience, management...

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Getting a non-producer to deliver? Ask the Proposal Doctor

Dear Proposal Doctor, I have one non-producer on my proposal team. Everyone in the organization has told me that this guy is the absolute right person to craft a 10-page section on a topic that he knows inside out. But, he doesn't deliver. He keeps saying it is in progress, and I will get something soon. Others have told me not to worry. However, as a proposal manager, how can I not worry? This person could make or break the entire proposal. Time is ticking. Please tell me what to do before it is too late. Biting My Fingernails Dear Biting, You are right to be worried! This is an archetypal proposal situation, and one that is particularly common in "expert cultures" where people have more knowledge in their heads than they can ever get onto paper—much less into 10 pages. The good news is that there are ways out...

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Getting the most from your proposal budget while increasing your productivity – Lisa Pafe and Brenda Crist

Bid & Proposal Con 2013 presentation

Today companies are trying to make the most of every dollar to increase their competitive edge. Even a small decrease in overhead costs or increase in productivity can make big difference. Our presentation decomposes a budget for developing a 30-day proposal and a 10-day proposal for small, medium, and large companies and provides recommendations for decreasing costs, while also streamlining workflow, effectively using automation, and working smarter not harder. Our presentation also describes how we implement management best practices like Agile, Information Technology Infrastructure Library® (ITIL), and Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBoK), and commonly used tools and technology to generate cost savings. We describe how doing more with less does not mean longer hours for less pay, but rather leverages continuous process improvement, teamwork, creativity, and ongoing training to result in long-term savings. The presentation shares best practices for cost savings. APMP BPC 2013 PPT Template May 29 2013...

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Questioning the questions? Ask the Proposal Doctor

Dear Proposal Doctor, The battle over which questions to send to the government customer on a long and not-very-well-written RFP has begun. The desktop publishers want to ask about fonts. The graphics people want to ask about color and foldout pages. The solution architect wants to ask about specifications and performance metrics. The contracts people want to suggest new terms and conditions. The pricing people want to ask about….everything. Just collecting, vetting, discussing, formatting, and submitting the questions could eat up our entire response time. What is a proposal manager to do? How can we streamline this process? -Questioning the Questions Dear Questioning, You’ve touched on a subject near and dear to my heart. Yes, this could easily spiral out of control. Worse yet, you could give away important information through your questions and, worse even than that, you could get back answers that only obfuscate the situation further. It...

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