Implementing a TO proposal proceSS: Part 4 – Using the artifacts from previous bids to streamline future bids
You won an award on the ID/IQ contract and have successfully bid some of the task orders (TO). Odds are that the task order requests (TOR) you have been responding to are consistent regarding some of the requirements they include. Whether you realize it or not, you are building a wealth of information, and these artifacts are useful in streamlining your process when bidding future TO opportunities. Some of the ways you can use the artifacts include:
- You will quickly gain an understanding of which of the other ID/IQ awardees will compete against you for TORs released under specific functional areas. Gathering intelligence on which competitors bid specific TORs and their win rate will aid you in making your bid/no bid decision regarding future bids. Information customers provide during debriefs will also help you develop an effective strategy when going up against these competitors. Keep in mind that some competitors, or even some of your own teammates, may be on more than one winning team. Strategize how you will ghost them in each instance, taking into consideration the unique aspects of each TO bid and team strengths and weaknesses. Also remember that a teammate today can be a competitor tomorrow. If any of your teammates are on other winning teams, decide early in the process how involved you want them involved in preparing the TO responses and how much information you want to give them access to.
- The TOR’s proposal preparation instructions are usually standard from one bid to the next. It is easy to use this to your advantage to save time when developing your response. Creating a template that includes the standard format and headings required in each TOR. can reduce proposal writing time and costs. If you have more than one ID/IQ contract, you’ll need to develop separate templates for each one because the response requirements will vary. Using a template enables you to quickly populate the document with relevant pre-written content or boilerplate. Gathering content from your teammates is easier when they have a template to use for guidance, and you can use your document repository to store content for easy retrieval.
- Generally, the section describing your TO technical solution will require unique content so tailor the headings in the template for a technical solutions section. However, the other sections of the proposal can be completed with pre-written content or boilerplate. For example, material (text and graphics) from the original ID/IQ proposal such as the management approach and past performance/corporate experience information can be used to populate TO responses. The spreadsheets used to provide task order pricing responses can be prepared in advance by including cells for labor category titles and negotiated hourly labor rates from the ID/IQ proposal.
Regularly review the business development, capture, and proposal data you have at your disposal as you continue bidding TOs. You’ll begin to see how you can use these artifacts you already have to constantly improve and streamline your TO proposal response process.