When the federal government advertises its Request for Proposal (RFP), it then looks for competitive responses. Anything short of a compliant and persuasive response will not be considered for an award.
Many contractors have not mastered the art of correctly responding to a Government Request for Proposal.
Therefore, they continue to struggle when bidding on government contracts.
- To win federal contracts, you have to understand the basic ground rules.
- Each RFP is different, and you must give each special attention.
The First Thing to Do Once You Decide to Bid on Government RFPs: Before responding to your next government RFP, take some time to understand the technical evaluation requirements that the government must follow. Without this, your response the RFP will be wasted. Look to see whether the procurement is simply the lowest price technically acceptable or a negotiated procurement under FAR 15. This will make a clear difference in how you read government Requests for Proposals.
Follow Basic RFP Format to Develop Your Approach: Your response to request for proposal must mirror the Instruction to Offerors Section. Many government contractors find that their proposals are thrown out as non-compliant because they fail to follow this important aspect.
- The best way to avoid this mistake is to draft a compliance matrix that follows the exact letter of this section.
Ensure that your technical approach shows a complete understanding of the requirements. When you respond to the Government’s Request for Proposal, the Agency wants to be sure that you show a complete understanding of the Statement of Work (SOW).
- This is a heavily scored part of your response.
- You should pay serious attention to this section. Here, you should focus on telling the agency HOW you intend of performing the each section of the SOW.
- Detail is critical.
- Agencies assess strengths and weakness based on your understanding of the RFP requirements.
- Never generalize your responses.
- Watch out for technical proposal responses that focus primarily on hiring incumbent employees.
- Anticipate problems and discuss how you will overcome them.
- Discuss risk mitigation approaches.
Hiring Proposal Writers For Government RFPs
In a response to request for proposal, many companies invest in proposal writers. This frees up time and valuable resources. Cost is always important. However, you should also inquire into the following when hiring writing services.
- How much does the writer understand the regulations and laws that apply to evaluations?
- Does the writer understand how to overcome past performance hurdles?
- Can the writer explain an approach that will make your federal RFP bid response more competitive?
- Does the writer understand best value concepts and the laws that government contracting agencies must follow?
Federal Government Request for Proposal Sections
The following are uniform formats used by most federal government contracting agencies when developing your bid response to the RFP.
- Section A: Information to Offerors
- Section B: Supplies or Services & Pricing and Cost
- Section C: Statement of Work (SOW)
- Section D: Package and Marking
- Section E; Inspection and Acceptance
- Section F: Deliveries or Performance
- Section G: Contract Administrative Data
- Section H: Special Contract Requirements
- Section I: Contract Clauses / General Provisions
- Section J: Attachments, Exhibits
- Section K: Representations / Certifications and Statement of Offerors
- Section L: Proposal Preparation Instructions and Other
- Section M: Evaluation Criteria
Although these sections of the request for proposal are important, you want to pay specific attention to Sections of L and M. Lately, agencies have applied critical important RFP information in Section H. You want to avoid the mistake of not reading this section. Ensure that your proposal writing efforts are focused and specific to the government’s needs. See more information about the RFP process and Responding to Government RFPs.
Response to Request for Proposal Tips
If you choose to take the chance and respond to a federal government request for proposal on your own, then be aware of the following:
- Always read all of the solicitation documents
- Focus on telling the government how you intend on performing each and every aspect of the Statement of Work
- Make sure that your key personnel demonstrate the required experience level and certifications in their resumes
- Include risk mitigation approaches
- Pay serious attention to your pricing – the government already has its estimate
- Ensure that you allocate the right amount of hours and personnel to a particular task
- Learn about performance based contracts and statements of work
If you need professional help with a response to request for proposal in government contracting, Call Watson & Associates at 1-866-601-5518. FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION