19 Sep Bid Or No Bid: Creating A Template Search Profile That Works For You
Is your bid success rate lower than you would like it to be?
Many businesses do not realise that one of the key reasons for this may have nothing to do with the quality of their bids, but instead comes down to having picked unsuitable opportunities to bid on.
Having an indiscriminate approach to bidding does not necessarily improve your chances of success. In fact, the opposite can be true, and one of the best ways to improve your bid success rate is to ensure that the opportunities you are choosing to bid on are genuinely suitable for you.
But how can you identify which are the right opportunities for you? One of the best ways to do this is by creating a template search profile.
What Is A Template Search Profile?
A template search profile is a set of rules or criteria that you apply when assessing an opportunity and deciding whether to make a bid or not.
Rather than having to assess opportunities from scratch on a case-by-case basis, a template search profile helps to keep your criteria narrow, focused, and relevant, so that you do not become distracted by opportunities that are less suitable for you and are therefore less likely to result in success.
Overall, a template search profile can help you to identify the best opportunities for you and your business – improving your chances of making successful bids as a result.
How Do I Create A Template Search Profile?
You can begin by following the tips below:
Create Your Criteria (and stick to them)
First, consider your key criteria when assessing opportunities. What are some of the most important or promising features in an opportunity? Conversely, what are some of the features that might make you and your company unsuitable?
You may wish to create criteria around the type of work required, the value of the work, the location, the previous experience needed, the accreditation requirements, and the type of client, for example.
Some criteria in a bid may be binary — a lack of specific accreditations may rule you out of certain work, for example — and it is vital to take factors like this into account so that you know in advance whether a particular opportunity is unsuitable for you and would be a waste of time to bid on. Other criteria, however, may be more subjective.
It can be helpful to first consider what the perfect fit or opportunity for your business would look like, and to then create a sliding scale of opportunity attractiveness so that you will know quickly and easily what is, and is not, a good fit for you.
This will provide you with a set of defined criteria to assess each opportunity against.
Once you have a clear understanding of what your ideal criteria are, it can be helpful to add some additional parameters to each of your key considerations (e.g. the value of the work and the type of client etc.).
Do not end up down the ‘rabbit hole’ of assessing (or worse, applying for) lots of opportunities that are completely unsuitable for you. The important thing to remember is to focus your searches and applications on opportunities that fit your key criteria, and the parameters within them.
However, some opportunities may only be a slight stretch in terms of the required experience or the location of the work, for example, and might be worth considering if they are suitable in other ways.
But whether you are only considering opportunities that stick strictly to your criteria, or are willing to bid on those which deviate from it slightly, be sure to put your time and energy into applying for a smaller, more select number of opportunities that are well suited to your business, and in which you have a much better chance of finding success.
Use Your Time Effectively
Once armed with your criteria, parameters, and a strong understanding of the opportunities you are suitable for, be sure to value your time and allocate it effectively.
For example, after you have identified the best opportunities for you to bid on, you may wish to explore a few additional possibilities. However, if you choose to do this, set a suitable time limit for researching these extra options, while dedicating enough resources to properly bid on your more preferred opportunities.
Opportunities that are the most suitable for you — and that you are the most suitable for — are the most likely to be successful, so first ensure that the majority of your time, energy, and attention is focused on responding to these prospects, while any surplus time can be devoted to researching or pursuing additional opportunities.