Are you committing to every project or a bid that comes your way? If the answer is yes, chances are that you are simply wasting your time and money. Here are 3 simple questions (with many smaller ones, of course) you should ask yourself before even considering writing a proposal and responding to an RFP or a bid.
The project might look lucrative and appealing, but don’t immediately rush to apply for it. This is a very common mistake, and many of us know its repercussions. Start with the basics and evaluate each project bid carefully. The decision to apply for the RFX or move on is crucial for your business.
Only if you’ve given a bold YES to all the questions, proceed to the proposal preparation stage.
1. Can We Deliver?
Many companies and freelancers jump into bidding without assessing and evaluating their strengths and weaknesses. Writing a decent proposal takes time and preparation. If your core skills do not comply with the requirements, the time spent analyzing this market and learning new sphere will be overwhelming, and better spent on other activities that bring results.
Start by asking yourself these simple questions:
- Have we completed a similar project within a required time frame?
- Do we have all required skills?
- Do we have enough people to complete the job on time?
- Do we have to bring additional workforce? Do we have a necessary budget for it?
- Do we have enough supply of goods?
- Any questions specific to your market and a particular RFP.
The trick is to be honest with yourself. Do not pretend you can answer painful questions later. Evaluate yourself as if you were the client. Don’t like what you see? Maybe it’s better to withhold from this very project?
2. Can We Win?
First thing first, get as much information as possible about the client and if there is a current incumbent. If there is, dig hard to gather info on the incumbent and other service providers, who are participating in the tender.
Some tenders are thrown to the public to masquerade contract prolongation with the current incumbent. Look for hints in the RFP and transparency of whole the process. Listen to your guts – if you feel something is not right, it might actually be rightly so.
List client’s issues in the table and compare how you stand against competing companies. Can you add something extra to persuade the prospect to choose you?
Conduct an experiment and pitch your case to a colleague or a friend. It can be done either in written form by sending a document or presenting your pitch live. Are they hooked? Do they buy it? Do you feel confident enough with the pitch? Going through the pitch will help you shape the offer and learn important feedback. Maybe your models will even suggest valuable ideas.
This article first appeared on Freelanceswitch, to read a full post please follow this link http://freelanceswitch.com/finding/questions-before-bidding/
What factors influence your decision to bid for a particular project or to refuse?