Do you have a relatively small business development (BD) team, but a pipeline with hundreds of opportunities that are rapidly approaching RFP release dates? Even large companies struggle with the predicament where some of their pipeline opportunities get love, while others end up with limited attention or ignored.
Opportunities stall in the pipeline for many reasons. One of the reasons may be that BD personnel must report on a total dollar value of opportunities in the pipeline as a key metric, but it’s not paired with the opportunity aging or bid rate reports. Another reason may be that the company’s BD personnel are too busy to address everything in the pipeline, while they started out overly optimistic in estimating what work they can take on. Or there may be a lack of discipline in saying “no” to opportunities that are “nice to have,” as opposed to “must have.” They may not dive deeper than paid database data to do opportunity qualifications that normally require research rigor and “digging.” Lack of actionable intelligence may prevent them from moving forward with an opportunity once it enters the pipeline. Opportunity gate reviews, if they happen, may then be full of soft data or “storytelling,” as opposed to reliance on actionable intelligence and win strategies to advance the opportunity through the pipeline.
As a result, there may be overemphasis on existing opportunities as opposed to reaching for new deals. The bid rate may be lower if companies are selective. If they bid aggressively, their proposal teams may have poor to no capture data to rely on when writing proposals. In the end, the win and capture rates will suffer. In terms of business outcomes, overly optimistic pipeline forecasts will result in shortfalls of bookings and revenues that slow down company growth and undermine leadership’s confidence and BD personnel’s credibility.
How do you deal with stalled opportunities in a cluttered pipeline? You need to diagnose the root causes first. Of course, you could ask your BD personnel why certain opportunities are not progressing through the pipeline, but they may not have the answers beyond wishing there were more time in their day.
A better approach is to reestablish the discipline of the gate review process, where BDers need to requalify opportunities in the pipeline and get rid of the ones that are not real, don’t quite fit, or would require more resources than what the company can dedicate. For the remaining opportunities, leadership needs to know more about each opportunity. For example, is there a relationship with the customer? And if not, is there enough time to build one? Does the company have the past performance that fits the requirements, and is there a viable initial win strategy in place? In other words, can the company bid and win the deal? And is there enough time, personnel, and Bid & Proposal (B&P) funds to answer all of these questions and more?
OST can help get the opportunities unstuck in your pipeline. Our WinMoreBD™™ Federal Pipeline Support Service, powered by TechnoMile’s Growth™ solution, helps you delegate time-consuming research tasks to our highly trained BD Analysts who will gather opportunity information faster, more efficiently, and more effectively than most in-house BD personnel. OST uses a proprietary method to gather opportunity data, based on our tried-and-true detailed processes and procedures. This will free up your valuable BDers and Capture Managers so they can focus on performing higher-level tasks that move opportunities forward and raise your win probability (Pwin). Let them talk to government customers, form teams, develop and implement win strategies, and architect winning solutions. We will take care of the data and intelligence gathering part.
Our BD Analysts will identify and qualify opportunities for your pipeline. Our fixed-price opportunity identification and qualification services will support you regardless of your company size. Opportunity identification and qualification are necessary steps of the business development lifecycle to ensure that you capture and bid on enough proposals that you can win.
WinMoreBD™™ Opportunity Identification includes analyzing information from multiple sources to find opportunities that fit your company early in the government procurement cycle. Our BD Analysts review target agency forecasts, match opportunities to your company’s competencies and strategic growth plans, identify opportunities using TechnoMile’s Competitive Insights™ system and several other sources, review opportunities for fit, and present them to our clients to consider for qualification and beyond.
WinMoreBD™™ Opportunity Qualification involves analytics that feed the capture plan. We create a presentation that allows you to consider a deeper level of information relevant to an opportunity so that you can make sound business decisions. Having quality information helps you run a disciplined Gate Review process. During qualification, our BD Analysts:
- Locate relevant documents
- Create a government call plan
- Validate the opportunity and its details with the government customer
- Research opportunity background
- Identify applicable past performance projects
- Review opportunity detail to determine if this is a fit for your company
- Perform an initial competitive analysis
- Identify an initial set of customer’s hot buttons
- Determine an initial win strategy
Our team presents the briefing to you and your leadership team to help you make an informed pursue/don’t pursue decision.
Let us provide the information you need about the opportunities in your pipeline so that you can focus on pursuing opportunities with higher Pwin. Let us do the intelligence gathering work, thus freeing up your valuable internal resources to move the deal to the finish line.
OST Global Solutions is a professional business development consulting firm. We have experience supporting large, strategic bids, and we can provide capture and proposal teams to develop a complete, winning proposal. Or we can provide consultants on a case-by-case basis to fill gaps on your business development team. We also support business development efforts through our WinMore BD service by identifying and qualifying opportunities. Reach out to us if you need support meeting your business development goals.
Upcoming Bid & Proposal Academy Classes
A compliant and high-scoring proposal starts with a well-thought-out outline. This course dives into the intricacies of developing proposal outlines, annotating these outlines, preparing compliance and cross-reference matrixes, and preparing storyboards or work packages the right way. It starts with analyzing different types of Requests for Proposal (RFP) and Requests for Quote (RFQ) formats to show how various customers may organize the requirements. Learn More
This class covers the spectrum of the most important topics, from preparing for a proposal effort and making a bid-no-bid decision, to orchestrating a great proposal kickoff, driving subject matter experts to produce winning content, exhibiting superb leadership and team management skills, managing conflict, setting the right expectations, optimizing proposal team performance, getting the most from the proposal color reviews, and mitigating proposal risks at every stage to reduce stress and increase your proposal’s Pwin. The course also focuses on measuring and improving cost-efficiency and effectiveness of the proposal team. Learn More
Developing a Winning Cost Volume course helps you increase your federal contract win probability. We focus on government contract evaluation, pricing fundamentals such as cost buildup and cost volume elements, price strategy, developing basis of estimate (BOE), coming up with assumptions, Work Breakdown Structure (WBS), cost volume narrative, winning in lowest price technically acceptable proposals (LPTA), and much more. Learn More