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06 RFP Response Metrics that Help You Secure Government Proposal Wins

Request for proposal (RFP) responses are a common way to secure business with the government, and there are key metrics that help you secure government proposal wins. In this article, we will detail 06 RFP response metrics that your organization and proposal team should pay attention to during the government request for proposal (RFP) process.  

Government proposal writing requires effort from several subject matter experts (SMEs), proposal writers, proposal managers, capture managers, and business development professionals to be successful. Do you notice how that is quite a big team?

Government proposal management and win strategy for government contract proposals is quite a big effort! Your contract wins can provide several benefits for your company such as greater visibility in the market, competitive advantage, improved past performance, and of course, greater access to revenue. 

Winning business with the federal, state, or local government is not a simple feat, but it can be done. Keep reading to learn the 06 RFP response metrics that your proposal team can use to improve your proposal response strategy and secure wins. 

Here are the 06 RFP response metrics: 

1: Go/No-Go Rates 

It is necessary to track your Go/No-Go decisions for every RFP response, especially if there were extensive efforts in business development completed beforehand. You must also document the reason behind choosing the decision – No-Go in particular. This detailed information affords your leadership the opportunity to understand lessons learned and improve the Go/No-Go rates metric.

Generally, the Go/No-Go rate will share the percentage of “Go” decisions in comparison with the amount of “No-Go” decisions. It is a healthy business practice to “No-Go” government bid opportunities that are outside of the scope of your business capabilities or that do not offer sufficient time to respond to the government RFP.   

However, if the Go/No-Go rate is low, while the amount of available opportunities is high, there may be something your proposal leadership and business development leads should consider rethinking. 

2: Pipeline Ratio 

How many bids do you have in the pipeline? You want to be strategic about pursuing new opportunities with the government (we recommend capture management software). Thus, your pipeline ratio reveals how many bid opportunities are pre-RFP versus how many are currently being processed (developing proposal responses). Strategy acknowledges the level of resources that are available and the amount you will need to respond to additional RFP requests effectively. 

Use this metric to coordinate resources and improve response delivery.  

3: Resource Availability

Going along with pipeline ratio, here we want to remind you to understand resource availability. Resources, as it relates to proposal writing and government contract bidding, considers the professionals that must write, manage, and contribute to the proposal and capture strategy. 

No matter the size of your business, resource availability ramps up and down at unexpected moments. You always want to plan for resources, so that you can be sure to produce a quality government business proposal.  

Tips: 04 Tips to Finding the Best Teaming Partners for Government Contracts 

4: Time-to-Completion 

The time-to-completion metric is important because it reveals a huge aspect of government proposal management: efficiency. Government contract proposals are time-bound, meaning the government provides a due date for every proposal response including documents and contracts, to be submitted on a certain day and time. Proposals that do not meet that time will be disqualified from evaluation. 

Time-to-completion let’s your leadership know how long the proposal took to be finalized from the moment the Go decision was made. It can also be used to track the individual aspects of the proposal development lifecycle.  

5: Response Rate 

Response rate is different from Go/No-Go rates. The response rate metric magnifies how many responses your organization has completed at any point in time. Responses to requests for information (RFIs), request for resumes (RFRs), and so on are all included in the response rate. 

Response rates help identify the level of effort your proposal team or response team is putting forth to compare this with the revenue that is coming in from these responses, as well as the sales growth. 

6: Win Rate  

Now for the crème de la crème of RFP response metrics – what we have all been waiting for throughout the article. The win rate! Win rates, as you can likely guess, are metrics that provide leadership with a clear number of wins in comparison to losses. How many proposal responses has your company won? How many have you lost?

It is standard and expected to lose a fair amount of government contract proposal opportunities. However, if the metric is exorbitantly high, especially if you have a high response rate, your proposal team is likely in need of some improvements or the capture team requires better strategy. 

Perhaps you do not have a proposal team. It may be a good idea to start looking for a proposal coordinator and proposal manager. Maybe you do not have a proposal management tool. Acquiring industry-specific technology with all the bells and whistles, but most of all the right solutions stand to put you at a competitive advantage.   

What About Industry Best Practices for Proposal Process Management?

Good question and we are glad you asked. 

Further, there are industry standards and best practices like the Shipley Proposal Process with the Shipley 9.6 Step Process, available for industry novices to take advantage of and learn how to write a government contract proposal and to create winning RFP responses.  

Proposal management software, like Zbizlink, is designed to mirror Shipley Proposal Process best practices. Your proposal team and capture management team can use the tools and technologies and the best government proposal management software to help deliver winning proposals without disruption. 

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