Preparing proposals checklists


Published on

Presentation by Pat Dotter, ACAS with the Minnesota PTAC. Sponsored by US SBA North Dakota and ND PTAC.

Published in: Business, News & Politics
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Preparing proposals checklists

  1. 1. 2 Table of Contents Subject Page Bidding Basics……………………………………………………….……….……..…..3. Bid Checklist……………………………………………………….……….…….…….7. Competitive Sealed Proposals…………………………………….………….………....9. Components of a Proposal…………………………………….……………………….14. Proposal Checklist………………………………………….…………………………..16.
  2. 2. 3 There is a lot of detail work involved in preparing a bid or proposal for the federal government. Because government contracts must meet specific legal criteria, bids must be filled out flawlessly. Submitting a form with a set of numbers missing, or sending it to the wrong agency may end your chances for winning a potentially lucrative contract. Before you get involved in the bidding process, take some time to lay the groundwork for successful bidding. Know Your SIC and NAICS Codes There is a Standard Industrial Classification (SIC), and North American Industry Classification codes for every category of business the government deals with. Each code also shows a size category for the purpose of determining what the government considers to be a "small business" within that industry. You can research the codes at Register In the Central Contractor Registration Database (CCR) This can be accomplished by visiting the website at The CCR registration is scheduled to replace the SF 129 filing with various government agencies and is the vehicle for obtaining your Trading Partner Identification Number (TPIN) and Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) Code. You must have a DUNS number to register. Get a DUNS number DUNS stands for Data Universal Numbering System. Your DUNS number identifies your individual business and lets the government know your location. It is required for any company doing business with the government. To get one at no charge, visit Meet Your Small Business Specialist Once you've identified all the government agencies that are your potential customers, begin introducing yourself to their small business specialists (SBS). Most procurement offices have such a person, usually in an office known as a SADBUS (Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization Specialist). SADBUS are among your greatest allies in marketing to the government because their mission is to recruit new small and disadvantaged business owners and to help them learn how best to do business with their facility. Price Yourself Carefully If you are responding to an IFB (Invitation for Bid), do your pricing very carefully, since the low bid wins, in most cases. Base your price quote on only what the IFB asks for. If you include "extras," you will price yourself out of the market and lose the bid. Double check your math to ensure that you don't wind up as the winning low bid because you left off a zero and are now compelled to sell the government $5,000 worth of widgets for $500! Bidding Basics
  3. 3. 4 Do Your Homework Before Submitting Bids Before you spend the time and money drafting a proposal, check the history of the procurement to absorb all the information possible concerning the item/service. If you simply write up a bid after reading a solicitation you are almost certain to lose. This can be discouraging as well as expensive. Bid Wisely and Selectively No business -- large or small -- is going to win most of the contracts they bid for. At best, you will win fewer than half the contracts you bid on. Bid only when you know enough about the procurement history to be sure you have a reasonable chance of success; when you know your price is extremely competitive (and still profitable for you!); and when your qualifications are a near perfect match with the requirements. If the solicitation calls for 5 years' experience, don't waste your time trying to get by with 3 1/2 years. Focus On Giving Best Value This is one of the hottest buzzwords in procurement these days as the government struggles to evaluate low price versus value for the money spent. For example, if your proposal includes value-added items such as training to go along with the computer software you're selling, you will increase your chances of winning. However, don't try to sell something the bid document didn't ask for. One tip is to isolate the "shall" statements in the bid document to make sure you don't omit a single requirement. Socio-Economic Considerations Special advantages exist in government contracting for specific businesses. It would certainly benefit you to review the programs available to small businesses and determine whether you qualify for participation in them. These programs offer significant considerations for those who qualify. Small Businesses The U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has prepared a guide to assist the general public in understanding SBA’s definitions of a small business. They are termed “size standards,” and represent the largest a firm can be and still be considered a small business. This guide provides general information on size standard requirements and also addresses most of the typical concerns of the public regarding the use of size standards. Effective October 1, 2000, SBA established a new table of small business size standards based on the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). This new table replaced the table that was based on the Standard Industrial Classification system (SIC). The SBA increased size standards for inflation effective February 22, 2002. They updated this “Guide to Small Business Size Standards” to reflect the new small business size standards, based on the NAICS. For more information on this, we suggest you visit the SBA Website at This guide is advisory only, and does not carry any legal weight. The SBA has written it in nontechnical language. For further information the user of this guide may contact the sources listed at the end or consult the applicable regulations in the Code of Federal Regulations.
  4. 4. 5 The regulations specifying size standards and governing their use are set forth in Title 13, Code of Federal Regulations, part 121 (13 CFR § 121), Small Business Size Regulations. SBA’s size regulations as they pertain to Federal procurement are also found in the Federal Acquisition Regulation, 48 CFR § 19. These regulations do have legal bearing on size determinations and size appeal rulings made by SBA. Small Disadvantaged Businesses (8a) The SBA administers two particular business assistance programs for small disadvantaged businesses (SDBs). These programs are the 8(a) Business Development Program and the Small Disadvantaged Business Certification Program. While the 8(a) Program offers a broad scope of assistance to socially and economically disadvantaged firms, SDB certification strictly pertains to benefits in Federal procurement. Companies which are 8(a) firms automatically qualify for SDB certification. Today’s 8(a) Business Development Program is strengthened and improved to be a truly effective business development vehicle. New regulations permit 8(a) companies to form beneficial teaming partnerships and allow Federal agencies to streamline the contracting process. New rules make it easier for non-minority firms to participate by proving their social disadvantage. The SBA has also implemented the new Mentor-Protégé Program to allow starting 8(a) companies to learn the ropes from graduated 8(a) firms. The new and improved 8(a) Program has become an essential instrument for helping socially and economically disadvantaged entrepreneurs gain access to the economic mainstream of American society. The SBA has helped thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs over the years to gain a foothold in government contracting. Participation is divided into two phases over nine years: a four-year developmental stage and a five-year transition stage. In fiscal year 1998, more than 6,100 firms participated in the 8(a) Program and were awarded $6.4 billion in Federal contract awards. Benefits of the Small Disadvantaged Business Program Participants can receive sole-source contracts, up to a ceiling of $3 million for goods and services and $5 million for manufacturing. While the SBA helps 8(a) firms build their competitive and institutional know- how, the agency also encourages them to participate in competitive acquisitions. Federal acquisition policies encourage Federal agencies to award a certain percentage of their contracts to SDBs. To speed up the award process, the SBA has signed Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with 25 Federal agencies allowing them to contract directly with certified 8(a) firms. Recent changes permit 8(a) firms to form joint ventures and teams to bid on contracts. This enhances the ability of 8(a) firms to perform larger prime contracts and overcome the effects of contract bundling, the combining of two or more contracts together into one large contract. Program goals require 8(a) firms to maintain a balance between their commercial and government business. There is also a limit on the total dollar value of sole-source contracts that an individual participant can receive while in the program: $100 million or five times the value of its primary NAICS code. The overall program goal is to graduate firms that will go on to thrive in a competitive business environment. To achieve this end, SBA district offices monitor and measure the progress of participants through annual reviews, business planning, and systematic evaluations. 8(a) participants may take advantage of specialized business training, counseling, marketing assistance, and high-level executive development
  5. 5. 6 provided by the SBA and its resource partners. They may also be eligible for assistance in obtaining access to surplus government property and supplies, SBA-guaranteed loans, and bonding assistance. Eligibility Requirements To qualify for the program, a small business must be owned and controlled by a socially and economically disadvantaged individual. Under the Small Business Act, certain presumed groups include African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, Native Americans, and Subcontinent Asian Americans. Other individuals can be admitted to the program if they show through a "preponderance of the evidence" that they are disadvantaged because of race, ethnicity, gender, physical handicap, or residence in an environment isolated from the mainstream of American society. In order to meet the economic disadvantage test, all individuals must have a net worth of less than $250,000, excluding the value of the business and personnel residence. Successful applicants must also meet applicable size standards for small business concerns; be in business for at least two years; display reasonable success potential; and display good character. Although the two- year requirement may be waived, firms must continue to comply with various requirements while in the program. Applying to the 8(a) Program You can apply to the 8(a) Program by contacting any SBA district office. For more information or questions, call the Division of Program Certification & Eligibility at (202) 205-6417. The Georgia District Office is located at: 233 Peachtree Street, NE, Suite 1900 Atlanta, GA 30303 Phone: (404) 331-0100 The HUBZone Contracting Program The HUBZone Empowerment Contracting Program stimulates economic development and creates jobs in urban and rural communities by providing Federal contracting preferences to small businesses. These preferences go to small businesses that obtain HUBZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zone) certification in part by employing staff who live in a HUBZone. The company must also maintain a "principal office" in one of these specially designated areas. Find the Location of a HUBZone in Your Area Simply log onto the web at and select the option ‘Are You in a HUBZone?’ You can search the system using several designations, including a specific address, a county or a full state.
  6. 6. 7 Bid Checklist 1. RFQ DOCUMENTS Obtain complete copy of Bid Package including ALL drawings and specifications. Distribute Bid Package to appropriate staff. Review Bid Package for missing pages/sections. Have you read all materials referred to but not included with the solicitation? Do you understand all requirements of the Bid Package? (If not, request clarification from the Contracting Officer) Prepare questions for submission to Contracting Officer. Receive and review responses to questions. Collect, distribute and review pertinent background documents. 2. PERSONNEL (As Required) Prepare packet of materials for long-term candidates. Prepare personnel checklists/tracking list for candidate documents. Prepare commitment letter(s) for signature by candidates. Recruit long-term staff and consultants. Collect resumes. Sort resumes by category/areas of expertise. Review resumes. Identify best candidates and alternates. Confirm candidates' interest/availability. Obtain additional info from candidates for resumes, if necessary. Obtain signed letters of commitment from candidates. Review personnel checklists for missing items. Determine format for re-written resumes. Re-write resumes. Prepare skills matrices. 3. PAST PERFORMANCE REFERENCES (As Required) Update and/or prepare past performance information as needed. Review for accuracy and completeness.
  7. 7. 8 4. Bid Preparation Have you rechecked your answers, your math, and your price quotes to make sure they are accurate and complete? Have you verified unit prices and inserted them in the proper places? Are you confident that you can meet all contract requirements (such as services offered, materials used, manufacturing , procedures, quality levels, testing, and packaging? And is your bid price enough so you can meet these requirements and still make a reasonable profit? Have you refrained from qualifying your bid by adding or taking exceptions to the bid documents? Additions of unwanted part numbers, exceptions to items and conditions of the solicitation, or inclusion of any type of contingency statement will result in your bid being declared nonresponsive. Have you signed in ink and dated the solicitation in all sections where required, including any certifications that apply to your business? Remember, that a letter of transmittal is not necessary. Proper and accurate completion of the forms provided is all that is necessary. Have you properly acknowledged, signed, and returned to the purchasing office all amendments to the solicitation? Have you correctly addressed the envelope containing your bid to the contracting office listed in the solicitation and identified it as a bid or proposal? Have you allowed enough time for the bid to reach the contracting office before the posted deadline? Have you placed sufficient postage on the envelope used for returning your bid? If you plan to have the bid hand-delivered, do you have the room number and other information necessary to get the bid to the right place before the time set for the bid opening? Do you have at least one file copy of the final version of your bid? Have you retained your original worksheet used in preparing your bid? Have you entered all your entries in ink and signed your bid? Have you initialed in ink any corrections to errors?
  8. 8. 9 The most flexible, but sometimes complicated, means of procuring goods and services is by competitive sealed proposal, sometimes called "Request for Proposal" (RFP). This method is used when the government is unable to define all the requirements of procurement or when factors in addition to price are important enough to require evaluation. In an RFP process, the government may decide to conduct discussions with offerors or to award a contract without discussions. The RFP must state all of the evaluation factors, including price and their relative weight. Factors not specified in the RFP can't be considered in the evaluation. What is an RFP? A Request for Proposals (RFP) is the solicitation package containing the information necessary for prospective contractors to prepare proposals. Most RFPs follow the same format as Invitations for Bids (IFBs). In response to an RFP, prospective contractors submit their price, plus a technical proposal spelling out how they will fulfill the need described in the solicitation. RFPs include the criteria by which proposals will be evaluated by an Source Selection Committee. The recommendations for preparing a bid similarly apply to preparing your proposal. When you respond to an RFP, pay particular attention to the evaluation criteria and the relative importance of each factor. If more emphasis is placed on a "workplan," for example, that part of your proposal should be developed with special care. What is Negotiation? The negotiation procedure within the RFP process permits bargaining between the government and the offerors before the final award of a contract. Depending on the size and complexity of the requirement, negotiation may include discussion; persuasion; changes in positions; and give-and-take on price, schedule, technical requirements, type of contract, or other contract terms. Contracting officers use RFPs whenever sealed bidding is not appropriate; that is, whenever it is not practicable or advantageous to use sealed bidding. Generally, RFPs will be used if the award will be based on factors other than price alone or if discussions are necessary. How Suppliers are Selected In selecting among offers submitted in response to an RFP, the source selection committee considers not only price, but also the offeror's ability to carry out the terms of a contract. Selection includes the evaluation of initial technical and cost/price proposals and may additionally include, discussions between the agency and offerors, and the submission and evaluation of "best and final offers." Competitive Sealed Proposals
  9. 9. 10 Evaluation of Proposals Government agencies evaluate proposals based on the factors as specified in the solicitation. These may include work plan, proposed contract personnel, the offeror's experience, price quotations, quality, and other criteria. Selection is based on the evaluation of proposals by a selection committee or review panel, composed of persons posessing various skills who are qualified to evaluate the proposals, who rank offerors according to the set criteria. Where award will not be based on only the evaluation of initial proposals, the agency, under the direction of the Contracting Officer, will determine which proposals are competitive enough to remain under consideration sometimes called the "Competitive Range." Discussions Discussions may include issues related to the offeror's technical proposal, price or other terms and conditions of the proposed contract. Leveling or technical transfusion are not permitted. Best and Final Offers After conclusion of discussions, offerors may be invited to submit "best and final offers." At this time, offerors can make their prices as competitive as possible and address questions and concerns specifically raised during discussions. Qualifying for Consideration Just as in sealed bidding, an offeror must be considered responsible in order to receive a contract. Responsiveness in RFPs does not play as significant a role as it does in competitive sealed bidding. Responsible Offers In determining responsibility, the Contracting Officer will consider a firm's facilities, production capabilities, quality control, financial status, credit rating, performance on previous government contracts, and business integrity. The RFP • Read it once, and then read it again. And again. Then check to assure you received all pages. Experienced bidders know that several readings of an RFP are necessary for a complete understanding of what is required. • Be aware that information critical to your bid may be scattered among many different sections of an RFP. • Put the RFP in a 3-ring binder for easy use as a reference document. You might also want to insert dividers in front of each important section for quick reference. • Use small "Post-It"™ notes at the edge of a page to mark important pages or paragraphs. That way, you can find them quickly.
  10. 10. 11 QUESTIONS ABOUT THE RFP • If you don't understand some of the information in the RFP, you can, and should, submit written questions to the Contracting Officer. • Some RFPs specify a date by which questions are due. Make sure you send in your questions before the due date or they may not be considered. • Be aware that the Government's response to all submitted questions is distributed to all bidders, usually through a written amendment to the RFP. Although you and your firm will not be identified as the "asker" of specific questions, the way in which you word your questions could provide important information to your competitors. Word your questions carefully to ensure that you don't give away information on your strategy or pricing. • If you call the Contracting Officer to obtain or clarify information in an RFP, be aware that verbal information given to you by the Government is not binding. THE PROPOSAL OUTLINE • If you have downloaded an RFP from the Internet, you can use that file to begin constructing your proposal outline. • Some people prepare an annotated outline as well as a basic outline. An annotated outline can contain important points from the RFP, as well as your own information on what you are planning to say in each section. • If you prepare an annotated outline, copy your file, save it under a different name, and delete the annotations. The result will be a basic outline which you can use for easier viewing and tracking of proposal sections and subsections. • For each section and/or subsection of your outline, indicate the estimated number of pages that will be written, the person responsible for doing the writing, and the evaluation points. • Put important instructions on the first page or at the top of your outline, so you don't have to rummage through the RFP to find them. These instructions might include: proposal due date and time, number of copies, page limits, font size, page margins, packaging and delivery instructions.
  11. 11. 12 THE PROPOSAL SCHEDULE • Make one and stick to it! • You might want to make a separate schedule for preparation of the cost/business proposal. • Make sure you leave plenty of time for copying, binding, and delivering the proposal. Remember, the copier knows that an important document is being copied, so it will break, jam or smudge. Have a back-up plan that includes having extra paper and toner on hand and sending the proposal out to be copied. • Distribute the schedule to all members of your proposal team. PROPOSAL PREPARATION • Make sure you are familiar with the instructions in the RFP. • Study the proposal evaluation criteria and the points allocated to each section/subsection of the technical proposal, as well as the points that are allocated to cost. This information will tell you what to emphasize and where to put your efforts with regard to proposal preparation. • Hold initial and regular follow-up meetings with your proposal team to discuss strategies, progress and problems. • To the extent possible, your Technical Approach and strategy should provide answers to the following questions: who, what, when, where, how, and why. • Depending upon the instructions in the RFP, your Management Section might contain a discussion on how you will manage the overall project, a discussion on how you will manage and oversee the work of your staff and subcontractors (if any), an organization chart of the project, and position descriptions of project staff. • In your Personnel Section, you may be required to include narrative information on the experience and skills of the staff members you are proposing for the project and/or their resumes. • In your Related Experience or Capabilities Section, you may need to demonstrate that you have performed similar or related work for this or other clients. • Your proposal may have other sections such as an Executive Summary, a discussion of your Understanding of the Problem, Appendices, or other required information as specified in the RFP.
  12. 12. 13 • Don't assume that the Government knows your organization's capabilities, staff or the projects you have carried out. The Government is supposed to evaluate only the specific information contained in your proposal. That means it must be written down in accordance with RFP instructions. • Use tables, charts and graphics to summarize information ("a picture says a thousand words") or to break up your narrative. • Check the entire proposal for the following: technical consistency; spelling; page numbering; section/subsection numbering or letting; consistency of appearance of headings, subheadings, font types and font sizes. • Make sure you have filled in and signed all the forms in the RFP that you must return with your bid. • Before and after copying your technical and cost proposals, check to see that each copy contains all pages and that they are in the proper order. COSTING • You have a technical strategy -- you should also have a costing strategy! • Don't wait until the last minute to begin gathering cost information that you will need to prepare your budget. • Be aware of and understand the type of contract you are bidding: fixed-fee, cost-plus, cost- reimbursement, time and materials, etc. This will likely affect the way you price your proposal. • Prepare a spreadsheet template or checklist of items to include in your budget. • Make sure your budget is consistent with what you are proposing to do or provide. • You may need to develop some specific assumptions for budgeting purposes. If appropriate, you can include these assumptions in your cost/business proposal on a separate page or as footnotes to your budget. In any event, always document your assumptions so that you can refer to them later and make changes if needed. • Check and re-check your numbers and formulas. Review the hard copy of your budget to help in spotting errors. • Make sure that your budget can be easily read. Don't use a font that is too small.
  13. 13. 14 Executive Summary: Your summary of the entire proposal; 1 page Project Description: Nuts and bolts of how your company will accomplish the project Statement of Work (SOW)/Statement of Objectives (SOO): Describe how your company will comply with the requirements of the SOW/SOW assuring each and every requirement is addressed. Cost and Pricing Data: Breakdown costs incurred by your company including overhead, if required. Organization Information: History and background of your company including your past performance history and products/service offered. Also include biographies/resumes here, if required. Conclusion: summary of the proposal's main points; 2 paragraphs IF YOU WIN • Congratulations! • You now have to actually manage and implement your project. IF YOU LOSE • You can call the Contracting Officer to arrange an in-person or telephone debriefing to find out the reasons for your loss. The debriefing could also provide a basis for submitting a protest. • Try not to get too discouraged -- no one can win all the time. • Learn from your experience and apply that learning to your next bid. BID/PROPOSAL PITFALLS - Don't Let These Happen to You! • Failure to follow the RFP instructions regarding organization of the bid/proposal, inclusion of required information, page limits, volumes, etc. • Failure to take evaluation criteria and allocated points into consideration when preparing your response. • Failure to understand and to demonstrate an understanding of the problem (i.e., the reason why the agency is issuing the RFP). • Failure to submit your proposal on the required date and time. • Failure to include all of the information requested by the Agency. • Failure to tailor your response to the specific RFP. Components of a Proposal
  14. 14. 15 • Costs/budgets are unreasonable (too high or too low) or incomplete. • Costs/budgets do not provide any detail or breakdown information (if required) for line and sub-line items. • Failure to include specifics of your proposed approach to the project. • Proposal is unprofessional in appearance (e.g., typos, blank pages, unnumbered pages, smudges, no whitespace, sloppy-looking, etc.). This reflects poorly upon your company. • Proposal is poorly written (e.g., information is not presented/organized in a logical manner, proposal is difficult to follow, poor grammar, etc.). • Proposal merely repeats or paraphrases the RFP. • Proposal does not explain how or by whom the project will be managed. • Proposal does not contain RELEVANT information about your firm, its capabilities, and/or its management and staff. • Proposal does not demonstrate that your firm/organization and personnel have the experience and capability to carry out the project.
  15. 15. 16 Proposal Checklist 1. RFP DOCUMENTS Obtain complete copy of RFP. Distribute RFP to appropriate staff. Review RFP for missing pages/sections. Prepare questions for submission to Contracting Officer. Receive and review responses to questions. Collect, distribute and review pertinent background documents. 2. PARTNERS Identify partners to participate in bid. Determine type of partnership arrangement. Prepare teaming or other type of appropriate agreements. Receive signed agreements from partners. Determine each partner's level of effort for project. Number and type of long-term staff. Number and type of consultants. 3. TECHNICAL STRATEGY Hold strategy meetings. Identify the partnership's strengths and weaknesses. Identify competition and their strengths and weakness. Identify ways to differentiate partnership from competition. Develop strategic themes. Develop strategy for each component and overall.
  16. 16. 17 4. TECHNICAL PROPOSAL Prepare draft outline/revise as needed. Identify & select writers for each section. Determine page numbers for each section. Determine document format (font, major/minor headings, etc.). Provide writers with written formatting guidelines/instructions. Prepare/distribute list of nomenclature, abbreviations, acronyms. Identify and provide writers with relevant sections from past proposals. Prepare schedule/identify due dates for draft sections. Determine review, feedback and editing process for written sections. Ensure compatibility of software packages and versions. Ensure compatibility of document transmission via e-mail. Ensure sufficient quantities of appendix materials are available. 5. PERSONNEL (As Required) Prepare packet of materials for long-term candidates. Prepare personnel checklists/tracking list for candidate documents. Prepare commitment letter(s) for signature by candidates. Recruit long-term staff and consultants. Collect resumes. Sort resumes by category/areas of expertise. Review resumes. Identify best candidates and alternates. Confirm candidates' interest/availability. Obtain additional info from candidates for resumes, if necessary. Obtain signed letters of commitment from candidates. Review personnel checklists for missing items. Determine format for re-written resumes. Re-write resumes. Prepare skills matrices.
  17. 17. 18 6. PAST PERFORMANCE REFERENCES (As Required) Use RFP format if required. Update and/or prepare past performance information as needed. Review for accuracy and completeness. 7. PACKAGING (As Required) Select cover design (map, picture, graphic, etc.). Identify info for cover (RFP #, date, submitted to/by, etc.). Prepare cover. Determine how proposal will be packaged. Purchase binder rings and covers, if needed. Purchase notebooks if needed. Purchase dividers/tabs if needed. Ensure sufficient quantities of all packaging items are available. 8. FINISHING TOUCHES Spell check all sections. Gather appendix materials. Prepare Table of Contents. Prepare Transmittal Letter. Prepare Inside Cover Sheet for Technical Proposal. Prepare Section Tabs/Dividers for Technical Proposal. 9. PRODUCTION Determine where and by whom proposal will be reproduced. Insert special pages, charts, etc., if required . Insert appendix materials. Check pages in each copy for legibility. Check each copy to ensure no pages are missing.
  18. 18. 19 10. PROPOSAL DELIVERY/LOGISTICS Preparations for Delivery Obtain packaging materials (boxes, wrapping paper, tape). Purchase box handle (if needed for hand carrying). Prepare label for technical proposal. Prepare outside address label. Mark "original" on 1 copy technical proposal. Prepare receipt (for hand carrying). Mailing Check courier service schedules (# days required for delivery). Wrap technical proposal and affix "technical proposal" label. Affix outside address label. Hand Carrying Identify person to carry proposal. Make airline and hotel reservations. Wrap technical proposal and affix "technical proposal" label. Affix outside address label. Affix handle, if required. Provide receipt to person who will hand-carry proposal.
  19. 19. How to Get Ready to Prepare a Bid Proposal 1. Identify the actual end user(s), and look for opportunities to meet and develop a relationship with the end user. 2. Attempt to identify customer’s needs before an RFP is formally advertised. 3. Find out what problems need to be solved, and position yourself as the problem- solver. 4. Identify and make suggestions to the RFP-writer. 5. Find out what fears the end user has so the appropriate reassurances can be incorporated into your proposal. 6. Provide the end user and RFP-writer with information like a draft scope of work, background on product/services, specifications, cost estimates, and white papers. 7. Identify who is on the bid/proposal evaluation committee and what their “hot buttons” are. 8. Identify anyone who knows the end users to provide additional insights. 9. Find out if there is an incumbent and who it is. 10. If there is an incumbent, determine how pleased the end user is with the incumbent’s performance. 11. Make sure you can meet all the requirements, or assemble a team who can. 12. Score yourself against the solicitation’s evaluation criteria. 13. Articulate why you should be awarded the contract, and incorporate this thinking into your proposal.