When the Proposal Cycle Hits a Bump
We have noticed this year, as in other years recently, that many major procurements have been delayed almost as a matter of routine. Rather than asking when the Government expects to release an RFP, the question is almost always, “When does the current contract end?” and “Can they bridge for another six months or a year?” If the answer to the second question is “Yes” it portends yet another delay for the new RFP.
What implications does this have? For one, if your pipeline is dependent on bidding and winning a few large projects, you’re at risk of coming up empty-handed if they get pushed back. For another, the benefit of good capture intelligence is multiplied: companies that can foretell delays know to find other opportunities in the short run to continue to find new business.
For proposal professionals, these gaps can be excellent times to work on your core assets. If you’re on regular staff, you can work on Past Performance citations, corporate experience, hiring and staffing statements, and similar items. Sometimes, it is nothing more that taking three recent efforts, and combining the content, using the best text and graphics to send the message.
If you’re a consultant, you should first contact us and get us a copy of your resume. We will find work for you! The real benefit, though, is a chance to refine and update your resume. It may be tempting to simply provide a list of proposals, with client agency and even bidding entity, and contract size. In our experience, however, what help us place proposal pros is short descriptions of work on projects that shows you understand client needs: did you conduct interviews? Develop master graphics to explain solutions? Participate in reviews and jump in to accelerate recovery?
These are the elements that enable someone who is looking to hire to project your skills into solving their issues. Take the time to tell stories in your resume, and the results will speak for themselves.