Articles tagged with : Bob Lohfeld

7 questions to answer when making bid/no-bid decisions

Washington Technology Article

Did you ever wonder why some companies have higher win rates than others? You might think at first that these companies have smarter people who are better trained at proposal writing, better proposal development processes, and maybe newer tools to help them write winning proposals. While all of these reasons may be valid, there are often more subtle reasons that have less to do with people, process, and technology and more to do with executive decision-making and the health of their new business pipeline. Let me explain why this is the case. Picking losers over winners Making good bid decisions is the quickest way to raise your company’s win rate. It is far quicker than hiring better people, improving poor proposal processes, or investing in capture and proposal technology. In fact, making better bid decisions brings about an immediate improvement in win rate and, as an added bonus, lowers your...

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Is DOD moving away from LPTA?

How long will it take to trickle down?

Industry has long objected to the use of lowest priced, technically acceptable (LPTA) procurement strategies for technical/professional services and complex solution procurements, and it now appears that DOD is moving away from this practice. Narrowing the use of LPTA Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, Frank Kendall, issued a memorandum on March 4 to clear up confusion about when LPTA is appropriate as a source selection process. His memo states LPTA “has a clear, but limited place in the source selection best value continuum” and narrowly defines when LPTA is appropriate for DOD procurements. This memo signals a shift away from the LPTA source selection process. Download a copy of Kendall’s memo titled, “Appropriate Use of Lowest Priced, Technically Acceptable Source Selection Process and Contract Type.” According to Kendall, LPTA should only be used when procurements meet four specific conditions: The requirements are well defined; The risk...

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Let’s stop bashing LPTA and find an alternative

One of the things I dislike most about lowest priced, technically acceptable (LPTA) procurements is that they are so misaligned with the values we have grown up with as government contractors. No matter how hard I try, I just cannot get excited about writing a proposal where the objective is to provide the minimally acceptable technical solution—a solution that just squeaks by the technical evaluators—instead of one that dazzles them by striving for outstanding performance and showcases good ideas and innovations. I was brought up in an industry that prided itself on striving to be the best, and not one that sought to deliver minimally acceptable work to the government. I’m not alone in this belief. In the 2014 Washington Technology Insider Report on LPTA procurements, 89% of industry and government responded that they were opposed to the use of LPTA for services procurements. Additionally, this view is shared by...

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Should we have procurement reform or just improvement?

It seems like everyone has been jumping on the procurement reform bandwagon this year and has been saying that the government’s procurement system is broken. While reforming government procurement is a lofty goal and resonates well in the halls of Congress, the practicality is that it is more of a pre-election battle cry than a reality. One organization, the Association of Proposal Management Professionals (APMP), has taken a different approach, stating that the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR)—the rules that control government procurement—are fine and do not need to be overhauled. What is broken is the way the FAR is applied and interpreted in many government procurements. According to APMP in their just-released survey report, Closing the Procurement Execution Gap, most government and industry professionals strongly agree about what improvements need to be made and how they can be done without reforming the FAR. I hope that business development and capture managers...

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