We have to adapt ourselves to the economic needs of our clients. We must demonstrate that we are truly client-centric and we must not simply churn out our same old tired solutions while making Egan-like noises. In my work, I see many contractors' initial proposals. Most do not explain how they can deliver more than their competitors, and so the client decides solely on price.
What readers should worry about is whether their bidding processes have evolved over the past 10 years. Informed clients, such the Highways Agency, are introducing methods of procurement that identify required outcomes and leave it to the supply-chain to come up with the best solution. With escalating bid costs and the rise of e-procurement, further dramatic changes are inevitable. The real question is, are you ready?
If I have provoked any of your readers to rethink their proposals may I suggest they come along to our annual conference – Bidding to Win – to hear more. As a special offer to Building readers, if they subsequently believe the investment of £99 entrance fee for the proposal-writing master class was not worth it, they can either have their money back or attend a series of bid-writing clinics that I will facilitate without further cost.
John Smith is right when he says there are two construction industries, but in my view they are divided along the line of those who want to culturally change their business development processes and those who vainly hope everything will remain the same.
Philip Collard, managing director, MarketingWorks Training & Consultancy, via email.