For effective proposal writing, you must determine which source-selection method the contracting agency is using. The contracting entity requesting proposals will specify the source-selection methodology to be used to determine contract award. This information will determine, to a significant extent, how you must approach the proposal-writing process.
Proposal Writing for an LPTA Approach Solicitation
The LPTA (lowest price technically acceptable) approach for source selection means that the contracting entity will award a project based on price, as long as the offer meets the standards set forth for an acceptable proposal.
In other words, the award will go to the qualified bidder who provides the lowest price. Assuming offerors meet the established standard for qualification, their proposals will be judged as equal other than on the basis of price.
This approach was historically used when the opportunity offered little chance of failure by the chosen contractor. However, today government spending cuts have compelled contracting entities to turn to this approach for more complex opportunities. LPTA opportunities often lead to awards being made to contractors that lack the qualifications to fulfill their obligations.
When preparing proposals in response to LPTA criteria, a streamlined approach is generally taken since contractors will not be rewarded for exceeding the minimum requirements.
Proposal Writing for a Best Value Approach Solicitation
When using the best value approach for source selection, a contracting entity will consider factors beyond the proposal price when making an award.
Non-price considerations might include the offeror’s qualifications, key personnel experience and capacity. This helps the contracting entity ensure that the award goes to a company that has the ability to successfully complete the project.
Under this source-selection method, the contracting entity has the opportunity to evaluate whether a higher-priced proposal has merit based on its overall value. Unfortunately, more and more federal-contracting agencies are turning away from this holistic approach, as pressure mounts to reduce government expenditures.
Proposal preparation efforts for best value source selection focus on a strategic approach and incorporation of win themes and discriminators in an effort to differentiate your proposal from the competition. These themes can address procuring agency priorities or highlight the benefits you offer to convincingly demonstrate why you should be selected for the project. These themes transcend minimum requirements to articulate how your solution provides the best value for the customer.
How to Choose the Best Proposal Writing Approach for You
When conducting a bid/no-bid analysis and deciding on your proposal-writing strategy, it is important that you determine which source-selection approach will be used. However, it is imperative that you delve a little further into the details.
In many cases, the source-selection criteria may be identified as LPTA, but upon taking a closer look, you find that the bar for acceptability is set especially high. This gives the contracting entity more control over outcome-based contracts to help ensure that the award goes to a contractor that can deliver.
As a critical component of our professional proposal-management services, Meridian West Consultants assists clients in the careful evaluation of upcoming opportunities. By accurately interpreting the intricate and often confusing details of a request for proposal (RFP) or request for quotation (RFQ), we can help ensure that you submit a responsive proposal that helps increase your chance of award whether it be LPTA or Best Value. Contact us today to learn more about how our professional proposal-writing services can help you reach your goals for business growth and success.