A series of large scale project wins for our clients in recent months, has identified an emerging but significant “tweak” in the process of delivering a winning submission. This tweak is to refocus efforts on developing an understanding of the specific customer (client) needs and wants and ensuring outstanding delivery.
Having experienced work with a number of very successful customer orientated organisations as a bid coach to help them win large projects, the process to successfully translate an understanding of the different customers, users and stakeholders unique value drivers and decision-making criteria into action has defined their distinct and sustainable competitive advantage. That is why they have developed winning bid strategies and been successful in being awarded the project.
In customer driven organisations, customer research, analysis of mega data, feedback and proactive engagement is used to develop an intimacy with their customer. It is a similar process when shaping a bid but with a slightly more tailored approach required. The focus is not only on the insights but how can we use these to tailor our bid strategy, our approach to the procurement and the way we engage with our customer.
To explain, often what may be defined in a tender document as the Evaluation Criteria may actually be alluding to a distinct value driver. A sample evaluation criteria could be as follows:
- Pricing – Is it lowest price, price certainty or best value for money?
- Methodology – Is it know how, proven demonstrated experience, efficiency, inclusion, risk mitigation or enabling innovation?
- People -Is it recognition, trust, experience, key personnel, references?
- Experience – Is it quality of work, managing complexity, managing stakeholders or a unique product or service offering?
- Environmental – Is it understanding or commitment?
- Cultural – Is it knowledge or a way of working such as collaboration which may be important to your client?
The ability for a bid team to work through the evaluation criteria above is critical. It needs to be undertaken with an approach solely focussed on your customer needs and wants and how your project team can successfully deliver against these.
While clarity on the above is key, it is also apparent some projects are progressing through the standard milestone gates while others have been fast tracked with greater flexibility and early involvement scope in an effort to fast-track increased economic activity.
Federal, State and Local government authorities are injecting huge amounts of capital into both the Australian and New Zealand economies in an effort to spark market recovery. Investment is being driven through various scales of infrastructure and social infrastructure construction projects.
With the landscape of projects potentially reshaping and providing winning organisations a strong future of sustainable work and growth, a second trend has been evolving in the market. An increasing number of companies bidding for these projects have been engaging the BRS team as Bid Coaches to assist in developing, shaping, challenging and refining their submission in order to improve their chances of winning.
The process to develop a customer focussed intimacy strategy for each project and what will drive the winning bid decision has become the single most important factor influencing our ability to win. Developing this customer intimacy is the most critical element embedded in the BRS Winning Bid Strategy. It sets the foundation for developing the submission, shaping the team, methodology and ultimately pricing. It then lays the platform for prioritising messages in evaluation meetings and interactives giving the team the best chance for success.