Article Submitted by OST Global Solutions
Cost proposals are often times the deciding factor in determining the winner – “It all comes down to price.” So why are cost volumes typically finished at the end of the proposal process and treated as an afterthought?
Click this link to watch the accompanying video: https://www.ostglobalsolutions.com/using-color-reviews-for-government-cost-proposals/.
Many companies treat cost proposals as an administrative task that requires no creativity. They figure out what they need to price, assemble the spreadsheet, and then cut and paste some language from other proposals to “justify” the numbers.
But this is a flawed way of thinking. Cost proposals present a great opportunity to convince the government that yours is the only realistic and reasonable pricing. There’s a lot of nuance when it comes to realism vs. reasonableness price evaluations that the Government performs, but we’re talking generalities here.
Cost proposals need to have win themes and ghost your competition by describing how you derive your rates. For example, is this a difficult market in which to find qualified job candidates? Are you paying people for specific and unusual skills that the government requires for this job? Do not assume that the person evaluating your proposal knows the ins and outs of the program. Spell it all out.
For cost volumes, there are many different creative ways to explaining different concepts to your government customer. But to succeed, you need more than one green team that’s happening towards the end of the whole proposal lifecycle. You must treat your cost like the technical volumes that follow the same lifecycle as your technical proposal.
OST likes to have a cost proposal pink team, a cost proposal red team, and a cost proposal gold team. Read aloud reviews can make sure the whole proposal to make sure it’s perfect. Cost people will notice your errors because they pay attention to detail.
My challenge to you: during your next proposal, think of your cost volume as a key piece of the proposal that you track and review thoroughly from the beginning of the process. Don’t put it off till the very end.
OST Global Solutions is a professional business development consulting firm and frequent guest instructor providing subject matter expertise to Virginia APEX Accelerator clients through interactive presentations. Please visit the Virginia APEX Accelerator training calendar to find the next free training seminar on developing cost proposals by using these tips to find the training you need: https://virginiaptac.org/resources/training-calendar-tips/
Virginia APEX Accelerator clients may also reach out directly to their Procurement Counselor for guidance. Not a client? Check to see if you are eligible to signup: https://virginiaptac.org/services/counseling/