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Bid Proposal Bid/No-Bid Decision Tool

 February 12, 2013
by Paul Heron

This is the last in our series on formalizing your evaluation of RFP opportunities. The idea is to use a shareable framework with consistent criteria to help you and your colleagues reach consensus on bid/no-bid decisions.

A consistent framework will also enable you to adjust your criteria and/or scoring, based on your experience. The goal is to optimize your win rate over time, given your resources.

Here are links to the full set of posts on this topic:

Why you need a formal RFP bid/no-bid decision framework
Step One: How to evaluate the client and relationship
Step Two: Project-specific questions
Step Three: Evaluating your competition
Step Four: Internal Factors

Download the tool

Download the Bid/No-bid Decision Tool in Excel format here. The tool is free for your internal use. You may adapt it in any way that suits your business.

How to use the tool

1. Customize the questions
We recommend you first talk as a team about the questions and whether they make sense in your situation. Change, add or eliminate questions until your team agrees on a set that will work for the clients and opportunities you see.

When changing or adding questions, be sure to create statements that constitute “go” votes when answered “agree” (+1, +3 or +5). That way, a higher result when summing all answers is always a stronger endorsement for bidding.

2. Reach consensus on new opportunities
When an opportunity arises, complete the sheet together or individually — but always discuss questions that elicit very different scores across the team. The first few times you use it, you may decide to change questions that cause confusion.

Agree on the minimum score that makes an opportunity attractive. Decide how to treat potential deal blockers.

Record the scores for each opportunity for future reference.

3. Compare your scores to bid and project success.
Once you’ve had some experience with the tool have a conversation about your win rate and profit history on projects for which you submitted bid proposals. Here are some suggested questions:

  1. How well do scores correlate with success at winning bids?
  2. How well do scores correlate with profitability of won projects?
  3. Is there an argument for raising or lowering the threshold score for bidding?
  4. Is this a useful approach for reaching consensus on whether to bid?

Please share your initial impressions and any feedback on its use.



Learn more

Bid support services we provide

Client example -- $300 million bid win


Photo credit

Paul Heron, MBA, is the founder and managing partner of Complex2Clear, and leads our bid response practice. LinkedIn 




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