The Government Contracting industry is experiencing a boom, as the government looks to fill contracts while balancing the introduction of both new and revised regulations. However, not all contractors are prepared to take advantage of the influx of opportunities to be found. Many contractors are still using spreadsheets and software platforms, which may help them gather information but fall short in filtering and integrating the data to make sound decisions in bidding and procuring contracts. To maintain your place in the contracting market—or even improve your success—it is crucial that you have created a system within your company which contains with the right arsenal in order to win bids.
The Traditional Approach to Government Bid Opportunities
Historically, working with the government in just about any contracting capacity was inefficient and painfully slow. The need for compliance overrules many methods for speeding up the process, and with many facets and agencies involved in a single project, it is difficult to gather data from multiple locations and make sense of it. To make matters worse, data quality is compromised the more times it is transferred from one spreadsheet or program to another.
Ineffective Teaming Process
Even with online search capabilities rapidly improving, finding the right teaming partner and subcontractors is cumbersome. Spreadsheets are complicated, containing an exorbitant amount of information on candidates, and organized in a way that they are nearly a single-use product, forcing bidders to repeat the process with every opportunity. Contractors, at times overwhelmed by the sheer number of possible bidding opportunities, struggle to qualify opportunities, and determine which have the best chances of winning and spend countless manhours recreating information repeatedly.
Look at Your Own Processes—Do They Work for You?
It is crucial to step back and take a critical look at your team. How aligned is your team in its approach, from how integrated your organization is to the processes (and accompanying tools) you utilize in the search for a partner, qualify opportunities, prepare bid proposals, and create and execute contracts in a timely manner. Ask yourself some of the following questions about your team:
- How acquainted are we with GovWin and do we utilize it?
- How do we customize data to reduce the overload of information?
- What is our bid success rate? How do we quantify our bid effort?
- What is our process of qualifying teaming partners and opportunities? Do we have a designated process for each one?
How Effective is your Team’s Communication?
Managing your bidding efforts requires the work of an entire team, and in most cases, multiple teams. This, however, is one area where contractors fall short. Email is not always the most useful method of communication. When you have multiple organizations providing input into bids and contracts, it can be problematic to create a single contract that covers all aspects and individual organization responsibilities with so many “cooks in the kitchen.” When evaluating your team, ask the following questions:
- Does our executive team understand our organization’s strengths and weaknesses in order to find the right partner?
- How easily can stakeholders access bids, and how do they assist in the “quantifying” process for finding partners and choosing the best opportunity?
- How fast is information dispersed throughout your organization, and have we experienced any failures with our communication style?
- How do we communicate with potential subcontractors?
- What collaboration processes do we use to allow teaming partners to write contracts together, including pricing details and specific scope of work for each partner?
Managing your Pipeline
There have been thousands of platforms developed to help companies manage their pipelines, but how many truly understand the government bidding process? You may have a CRM that stores data, but does it allow you to sift through the numbers of appropriate filters? When assessing your pipeline management method, consider the following:
- What is your current process for managing your pipeline?
- Do you feel you can improve your time drain in proposals?
- Are your searches and bids completed in a reasonable amount of time?
- Are you using old fashioned spreadsheets, or have you linked together with a hodge-podge of software that struggle to work together?
- What improvements would you like to see?
Successful and Unsuccessful Bidding
The bidding process is often the most time-consuming aspect of a government contractor’s journey to contract success. With a vast surplus of contracts available, it would be easy to adopt an approach of bidding for everything that looks remotely attractive. However, is this the most efficient way to win bids? Instead of wasting time and money bidding indiscriminately, look at the following:
- What is your procedure after you are successful in a bid?
- How do you record unsuccessful bids and what you can do to improve your bidding process?
- How often do you review your metrics in terms of win/lose percentage, the success of workflows, and bid costs?
How to Increase Efficiency with Pipeline Management Software like OneTeam
If you determine that your organization is not prepared for the exponential growth which the government contracting industry is experiencing, it is not too late to adopt some improvements. A solution like OneTeam could be the answer, without draining additional resources.
OneTeam helps you to qualify prospective partners based on unique features for your potential bid, offers a qualification matrix which enables you to sort through potential opportunities based on your expertise, capabilities, and history, and provides you with online access to hundreds of teaming partners from the GovWin website. Once you have created a teaming partnership, the platform includes options for you to communicate with potential partners in one location, combined with transparency in proposal writing and collaboration with teaming members.
To learn more about the OneTeam software and discover more tools to help your search, bidding, and proposal writing succeed, contact us. Our videos exhibit some of the features OneTeam includes, and we would be happy to demo our platform for you. Find out why pipeline management software like OneTeam can mean the difference between spinning your wheels and winning your ideal government bids!