As a creative advertising agency that is always open to new and exciting work, we signed up to receive procurement announcements. Procurement announcements give you access to local, state and federal government request for proposals (RFP), bids, contracts, resources and more. After signing up throughout the United States and all of our home state’s individual counties. We quickly had emails from large schools and municipalities flooding our email inbox, asking for help with things that our company specializes in. Great right? Well very shortly after signing up, we were getting more than 25 emails a day, and each email was full of procurement announcements. It got overwhelming fast. To make sense of the craziness, we came up with a process to identify what was worth our time and what was not.
We've simplified, taking a top-line approach to systematically weed through procurement announcements that aren't right for us. Here are the steps we use to identify the best procurement announcements for our business.
Regardless of how close your commodity codes are, you will still get irrelevant and sometimes completely bizarre requests. Look for email titles that include terms relevant to the work you provide, and decide if there is a fit.
Once you find a good fit, check out the proposal due date. Find this before you start reading the actual RFP. Make sure you give yourself enough time to complete a thorough proposal and mail it at least 2 days before the due date.
Once you’ve decided that the time period fits your schedule, open the RFP review the scope of services. Ask yourself theses two questions: Can your company complete the proposed services and all of its deliverables? Do you have decent references and samples of work to offer for this bid? If you answer no to either of these questions, this is probably not a good RFP for you to bid on.
Next, review the requirements and mandatory qualifications. This should bring you to the mandatory requirements and qualifications that are necessary to be considered for the award. Can you meet all of these requirements and qualifications? If not, again this might not be a good RFP for you.
A good portion of the bids that you will receive will not have a disclosed budget. But you should still run a quick find/search for the word budget or the $ symbol to see if it is listed. If it is, ask yourself, Is it a healthy budget for the services being requested? If you feel confident about the budget and all of the points listed above. You've found a procurement announcement that looks good. It's time to begin writing your bid.
When all is said and done, this system works well for us, saving us time and helping us focus our responses to those announcements best suited to our business.
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