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How can an acceptable proposal win in today's Government marketplace? Marry it with a great price! (05-28-15)

In the past, having a great proposal and a moderate price was enough to win government contracts. Today, that combination rarely wins. Competitive jobs are mostly awarded to bidders with great (i.e., low) prices and acceptable proposals.
In this environment, the lesson should be clear. Spend more of your precious B&P dollars to develop the winning price. Spend correspondingly less to polish your proposal.
Most large businesses have learned this lesson. Moreover, they have incorporated it in their capture gate review processes. Wise mid-tier companies, increasingly squeezed from above and below by large and small business competitors, are learning to use price - and Price To Win (PTW) - to price decisively.
CAI/SISCo's Training and consulting support is helping them do it, and we'd like to help you, too.
First, winning implies beating your competitors. To do that you will need to know who they are, and have a process that stack ranks their capabilities against an evaluation model. In CAI/SISCo's 10-step PTW Framework, this is known as developing qualitative situational awareness.
Next, you will need to determine the customer's addressable budget, and where each identified competitor is likely to target a bid price that lives within the budget envelope and overcomes non-cost evaluation award point shortfalls. In our PTW Framework, this is known as the Top-Down PTW, whose results suggest competitors to put under the Bottoms-Up PTW microscope.
Bottoms Up PTW involves developing both a partially-gamed and a fully-gamed bid prices for the targeted competitors. Developing the partially-gamed PTW involves:
  • corralling the opportunity's work requirements into a work breakdown structure;
  • identifying labor categories to be priced using the "corporate personalities" of each targeted competitive team's participants;
  • identifying and pricing required other direct costs (ODCs);
  • assessing impacts of labor and ODC inflation/deflation issues; and,
  • developing a basis of estimates for the entire period of performance.
Arriving at the fully-gamed PTW is accomplished using any of several gaming approaches detailed in my book. In each case, non-cost and price evaluation award points are tallied to show what your team's "fully gamed" price needs to be to prevail overall.
Next time I will dwell on another critical element of PTW: acquiring, pre-positioning, managing, and applying business development information of all sorts. In the meantime, to learn more about our services, to request a proposal, or to buy a book, please contact:
  • Sherby Weinberg for PTW Professional Development Training - Sherby Weinberg - her phone number is (301) 717 9718 and her email is; or
  • Rich Brown for a proposal to do a PTW study on a specific opportunity - his phone number is (301) 704 1289 and his email is
My PTW Book - Hope Is Not A Winning Strategy... ... But Price To Win Is - is always available from Amazon as are copies of the other books in our Roadmap To BD Success Series. If there are any other issues related to bid price development that you would like to discuss please call me, Tony Constable, on (301) 807 8171.
Good luck, and happy hunting!
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