If you have been in the government contract world for a while, you know that proposals are scored, not read. Contractors that write proposals with reading in mind have already lost the bid. BC2Match helps you find the best opportunities for your company, but we cannot write the proposal for you. However, we can share best practices for proposal writing to increase your chances of winning the government contract that you found through BC2Match.

Work backward and create a checklist

It is a good idea to work from the day the proposal is due. You can create a timeline that includes every component of the RFP. This includes deliverables, pricing, and teaming partners (which you can find through BC2Match as a member). If you work forward and come to a section that requires you to re-write previous sections, you may not finish your proposal in time.

Creating a checklist works best when you are working backward. The checklist helps you:

  • see everything you need for the proposal.
  • delegate responsibilities.
  • Stay on task so that you do not stray from expectations.
  • minimize mistakes.

Working backward with a checklist ensures you have everything you need to deliver a quality proposal.

Follow the RFP format with clear language

Because procurement officers often quickly glance at proposals, you need to do two things:

  • Speak to each required section thoroughly. Avoid filling your content with fluff to make it look more substantial than what it is. Unnecessary content will be a turn-off and hurt your score.
  • Use plain language and avoid jargon. Using sophisticated and/or buzzwords diminishes the quality of the proposal. Procurement officers should be able to easily skim your proposal without having to decipher your jargon.

Clear language in the expected format will raise your score as the procurement officers are rating proposals. This will give you a higher chance of being short-listed.

Make the proposal about the customer

Your proposal is not a resume. It is your solution to meet the customer’s needs. You can do this by following these steps:

  • Speak only to the customer’s requests. If you want to use a case study or talk about an achievement that is great but does not speak to the RFP, resist the urge. If it doesn’t relate, then they won’t care.
  • Show empathy. Show that you understand their issue and that you can help them.
  • Lay out your plan. Your plan should be detailed, and your solution should address their specific issues. This is not the time to be vague with your capabilities.

Writing a winning proposal starts with qualified opportunities. BC2Match’s “Intelligent Matching” finds qualified opportunities for you. Sign up for a free trial and start down the road of winning more contracts.