Guest author: Katy Ruzicka, Marketing Guru / Project Manager
After you submit a proposal, it can be tempting to simply put the files on the server, brush your hands off, and walk away. But you still have one crucial step to your proposal process: Closeout.
Closeout is the process of archiving information and documentation developed during the pursuit. This is particularly important because proposal documents often contain source material for future proposals.
Technical folks: the great news is that your marketing professionals can do closeout for you! Managers: Be sure to leave time for marketing staff to do this. So often we see clients ask marketing professionals NOT do this due to overwork on active proposals...then it never happens. Work out a solution / hire someone to do this upkeep on a bi-weekly basis for best results.
Here's a partial list for closeout:
- Project descriptions
- Teaming agreements
- Lessons learned or case studies
- Project approach/workplan
- Resume information
- Qualification summaries/overviews
- Project data or statistics
- Client reference information
- Capture plans
- Narrative responses
- Graphics and images
- Score sheets and debrief notes
How and where do you store this info? It's up to you/your firm, but it should be consistent across all marketing and technical personnel, well-organized, and easily accessible. Possibilities include CRM software, server directories, and databases. Here at DOTomation, we use Airtable and our cloud file storage.
Protip: Close out ALL iterations of the proposal, as valuable information was likely crafted for an earlier version and then cut for space!
The main question we get is this: Do we really have time to do closeout on every single proposal? Answer: If you want your marketing professionals to be able to help reduce your future time spent on proposals, then you should spend that 1hr now.
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