Given the effort an RFP response takes, it only makes sense to investigate the outcome. This is especially true if you frequently bid on the same or similar services. Formal win-loss reviews are the key to understanding why you win or lose bids—and how to improve your future results.
A robust win-loss review process starts with a comprehensive set of questions.
Address all aspects of the bid
Segment your process to include questions on:
- Relationship: How deep and wide are your prospect relationships? How effective was your team’s pre-RFP engagement? If the prospect is a current client, which aspects of your current relationship are strongest and weakest?
- Process: How did your team handle the bid response? Was the solution responsive to the issuer’s strategic drivers and hot button issues? Was your proposal visually appealing and easy to read and understand?
- Value proposition: How did your offering stack up against the competition? Was it well aligned with the requirements? Did you prove your team could deliver the solution? Were value-added components seen as responsive and well defined?
- Positioning: In which aspects was your offer superior? Where did competitors score higher? How does the issuer see your company, team and ability to perform relative to your main competitors? How does your relationship compare to other bidders’ relationships?
- Price: Was your pricing clearly presented? How did your price compare with other bidders? Did other bidders offer bundles or plans that affected the decision? How much higher (or lower) was your price than the successful (or closest competitor)?
Customize and refine your questions
Make your questions as specific as possible and tailor them to suit your business. For example, RFPs in some industries typically include pricing tables for completion. This will affect how you structure questions on price.
Test the questions internally and refine them until they are complete and clear.
Once you’re satisfied with your questions, the next step is to plan and execute successful interviews. We’ll explore how to do this in our next post.