Building the Business Case for Proposal Automation

Business development is critical to your organization’s success and proposals are the most critical business development document used today. The fact is that your manual proposal and RFP response processes today are likely costing far more than you realize or can effectively measure.

These outdated and inefficient models waste time and kill the productivity of proposal writers, sales team members, senior staff, and subject experts who are required to answer repetitive questions. Worse yet, mistakes and inconsistencies inherent in nearly all manual proposal processes:

  • Reduce your professionalism and proposal scores,
  • Kill your down-selections and win rates,
  • Make it more difficult for your salespeople to combat pricing pressure, and
  • Reduce the likelihood that the prospective customer will invite you to participate in future RFPs.

 Should You Invest? Take the Test!

Answer the following set of questions to help determine how much of an impact proposal automation software would make on your business:

How valuable are proposals and RFP responses to your business?  

  • Do a large percentage of your new business opportunities require a RFP response or proposal?
  • Do Individual proposals represent a significant revenue impact (or lifetime value) to your business?

How would you assess your proposals today? 

  • Do your proposals occasionally have mistakes that can reduce our perceived professionalism ?
  • Do your proposals commonly contain repetitive answers or reusable blocks of content?
  • Do your proposals suffer from inconsistent branding or formatting?

How would you assess your proposal process?  

  • Does your proposal team spend too much time on administrative tasks such as searching for answers, finding/replacing, formatting, etc.?
  • Do you receive RFPs requiring quick turnarounds and/or suffer from missing deadlines?
  • At times, do you have to reduce or rush review cycles to meet proposal deadlines?
  • Are you not able to spend as much time as you would like on strategic proposal activities such as RFP analysis, strategy, or win theme development?
  • Do you often need to interrupt subject experts and senior staff with repetitive questions?
  • Are you lacking an automated means of creating quick, professional responses for lesser-qualified opportunities?
  • At peak times, might you receive more RFPs than you are able to complete?

About your proposal team  

  • Is it difficult, costly, and/or risky to hire or bring new people into proposal writing?
  • When multiple RFPs are received, are your proposal writers called on to put in extra hours or work odd shifts?
  • Do you suffer from inconsistencies from proposal writer to proposal writer?

If you answered ‘yes’ more than five times, your business needs to carefully consider investing in proposal automation. If you answered ‘yes’ to more than eight times, your business needs to strongly consider investing in proposal automation immediately!

Clearly, the business case for proposal automation becomes more obvious as the value of proposals to your organization increases. In these scenarios, the business impact from winning just one or two proposals that are being lost today often justifies the investment. And the mistakes inherent in manual proposal processes make this argument easy!

“Value for money, without comprising quality. As a diverse team spread across a number of countries and offices, we needed a solution that was not only easy to use, but easy to manage.”

 

John Steele, Head of Bid Management

First Data