Implementing A Task Order Proposal Process: Part 2 – Next Steps

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Implementing A Task Order Proposal Process: Part 2 – Next Steps

Let’s start off by stating the obvious: Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (ID/IQ) contracts, Multiple Award Contracts (MACs), Government-wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs), and Blanket Purchase Agreements (BPA) are not going away. When you successfully bid and win an award on one of these contract vehicles, you have the opportunity to then bid on the subsequent task order requests (TOR).

In other words, the real work is just beginning; you have to plan to bid and win your share of these task orders (TO). You need to put the same time and effort into pursuing a TO as you do any other bid opportunity. Making business development and capture management part of your TO pursuit process is critical to your success. The following points are important activities to include in your process to pursuing (and winning) task orders.

  • Enjoy the success of winning a spot on the ID/IQ, but don’t celebrate too long. Jump right in, and start evaluating opportunities to find those first few TOs to bid. Waiting too long to start bidding can hurt you in the long run, and the reason is simple. Bidders who wait to starting pursuing task orderslose opportunities to gain past performance specific to the ID/IQ. The contracts cited as past performance in the proposal that won the ID/IQ won’t necessarily score as well in a task order proposal. Winning those first few task orders and being able to cite those contracts as past performance in future task order proposals carries more relevancy. Waiting for the elusive perfect task order bid while the competition is gaining this specific past performance only puts you at a disadvantage.
  • Implement your business development and capture processes to pursuing task orders. Write case studies highlighting you and your team’s success in relevant technical, management, staffing, and past performance focus areas. Develop white papers that focus on solutions you can offer to solve specific pain points or that help a customer mission advance to a future goal. Provide these documents to current and potential customers to showcase what you can offer through the ID/IQ.
  • Incorporate an area on your team’s company websites that promotes your participation on the ID/IQ, what TOs you have won in which focus areas, what customers you are supporting on those TOs, case studies documenting successful past performance on the TOs, and demonstrates how successfully your team works together. This information is another excellent resource to use in your business development and capture activities.
  • In some instances, an ID/IQ has a specific requirement for contractors to market and bring work to the vehicle. Even if such a requirement doesn’t exit, it is in your interest to promote your team’s ID/IQ award to your current and potential customers. Take advantage of the resources available through your subcontractors when you develop the call plan to accomplish this goal. Working together increases the number of customers you can meet with to market the expertise of your entire team and expands the number of task order opportunities you have to bid on the ID/IA. For example, do you have a contract that is coming up for recompete within the next year or two? If appropriate, recommending that your customer recompete the work on an ID/IQ offers both of you several benefits. Your customer can shorten the procurement process by using the quick turnaround of a TO proposal. You potentially can limit competition on your recompete bid since you already know the only other bidders will be the other contractors on the ID/IQ. Sometimes, an ID/IQ will even have a “you bring it, you keep it” policy whereby contractors who successfully market the ID/IQ to a customer will automatically be awarded the task order.
  • Remember to be consistent with what you promised in the ID/IQ proposal when bidding on a task order. When you bid on the ID/IQ, you provided the foundation for the technical and management processes and standards you would use when supporting future tasks. While each task order proposal is a separate bid, there has to be some flow down from the main contract. For example, if you stated in the ID/IQ proposal that you would manage tasks using integrated project teams (IPT), and IPTs are never mentioned in any of the subsequent task order proposals, there is a problem. If you stated that an independent third-party would participate on quality reviews and it never happens, your credibility is on the line.

– The Octant Best Practices Team

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