Articles tagged with : proposal process

The Proposal Dentist: Extracting a Technical Approach from the Technical Experts

by Brooke Crouter (This article appeared in the Fall 2011 edition of APMP-NCA’s Executive Summary eZine.) As budgets shrink, there will be fewer new contracts in the government market. With fewer deals, firms that compete for federal business will need to write sharper proposals to win their share of work. It is imperative that our proposals tell a clear story that resonates with the buyer. In particular, we must be able to present a fact-based approach that demonstrates a clear, tangible value to the potential customer. To achieve this, we need three critical elements: compliance, reviewability, and approach. Compliance. Compliance is the “entry fee” to the game; we must respond to the RFP criteria completely or risk having our proposal removed from further consideration. Compliance defines the structure of our response and ensures we meet all requirements. We all know we have to focus on compliance, and we rarely miss...

Continue reading...

How bad are your proposals?

Only 15% of companies said their proposals were always compliant, responsive, and compelling

In last month’s column, 6 ways your proposal can fail, I wrote about a company that submitted a less-than-professional proposal and wondered how pervasive this problem really is. After all, as professional proposal managers, how bad can our proposals really be? All professional proposal managers strive to make every proposal compliant, responsive, and compelling, yet a recent presentation reinforced my assessment that only about 15% of the firms bidding on U.S. government contracts consistently achieve these fundamental objectives. In a GovCon Business Development Weekly webinar hosted by Deltek’s Michael Hackmer, I discussed four fundamentals for creating a winning proposal. The first three fundamentals comprise creating a compliant, responsive, and compelling proposal. We polled the 150 webinar participants from a cross-section of small to large government contractors and asked them to rate how well their proposals did in achieving those three objectives. What we learned was surprising. Only 15% said their...

Continue reading...

Audio Tip: Creating your proposal outline and compliance matrix

How to stay on a solid path towards proposal success

Alternative content This month, proposal development expert Beth Wingate, APMP Fellow (aka AppMaven), offers insights and tips for developing your proposal outline and compliance matrix. I attended a roundtable presentation given by the Association of Proposal Management Professionals’ (APMP) National Capital Area (NCA) Chapter where three government contracting officers agreed with my assessment that you need to develop your proposal outlines following the hierarchy of Sections L (Instructions), then M (Evaluation Criteria), then C (Statement of Work (SOW)), then H (Special Contract Requirements), then I (Contract Clauses), then J (Attachments—sometimes where they hide the actual SOW), and then the rest of the RFP. In the pre-RFP release stage of the Capture and Proposal Life Cycle, I always develop a draft proposal outline and compliance matrix based on the government’s draft RFP or on one that I develop based on previous competitions if I’m in a recompete situation, or from capture-based...

Continue reading...

4 Fundamentals for creating a winning proposal – GovCon Business Development Weekly with Bob Lohfeld

Deal yourself a winning hand when you write your next proposal

Process carries the day," notes Lohfeld Consulting Group CEO Bob Lohfeld during his 4 Fundamentals for Creating a Winning Proposal webinar, part of the GovWin Business Development Weekly Series. 4 Fundamentals for Creating a Winning Proposal (click for presentation) Audience Q&A from presentation (click for Q&A)  

Continue reading...