5 Ways to Maximize Wins vs. What You Do Now

  |  May 7, 2018

Like a general facing the enemy, proposal professionals are challenged to make the absolute best use of their resources.  For many federal contractors, the challenge this season is in reverse: Too many targets.

The $1.3 trillion budget is packed with large opportunities across the range of federal agencies.  Plus-up 8% over 2017 for DoD, 7% for the Intell Community (IC), — and up, but less up, for most civilian agencies.

What can we do to maximize our proposal wins this summer on our plus-up market?  The recommendations below are based on 33 years operating a proposal services agency that has provided 994 different consultants to 1,117 companies including “Top 100” down to Small.

If I were a federal contractor, Large or Small, I would do these five things to win more business this summer:

  1. Re-Examine the Pipeline Prioritization

Take a second look at your pipeline to align the best targets to available resources. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Bid fewer programs to increase the aggregate value of more-likely-wins.

  1. Commit Outside Resources

Commit outside consultants now from a reliable proposal services agency.  Don’t wait until too late — come forward right now with your wish list.  It is going to be a “dog fight” for talent this year due to the excellent market conditions.

  1. Make Good Use of Price-to-Win (PTW)

Many companies Large and Small are still not using PTW right.  Those companies that want to lose should skip the PTW.   The others need to beg, borrow, buy, or steal PTW resources.

  1. Get Executive Buy-In In Advance

Everyone reading this will likely experience a resource problem this summer.  Solve your problem in advance by getting a solid commitment forthe opportunities to be bid and the resources needed from your Executive.

  1. Reward Successful Proposal Teams

 Develop a sustainable reward and recognition program for your business development, capture, and proposal teams when they win.  This could be as simple as a lunch with the CEO.  Or as complex as the establishment of a capture incentive plan (CIP).  This commitsa pool of dollars (typically 0.5% to 1.5% of profit) that is distributed in proportion to contributions to the win.  For example, one of OCI’s customers provides 1% of profit to the proposal team.

If the race goes to the swift and the victory to the strong, can we tilt fate in our favor by making maximum use of our resources?