Surge support is a cost-effective option to ensure that your in-house proposal managers keep their sanity and keep you as their employer. Most mid-tier companies have a skilled professional who wears the proposal manager mantle and is responsible for overseeing proposal efforts after they leave the “capture” phase and have been declared viable opportunities. This sounds great…so where does the surge come in? Most mid-tiers focus on a finite number of opportunities, so when it’s time to bid, they have to be able to go strong. Often that means working closely with C-levels to put a team together and negotiate contracts. Often it also means being knee deep in one proposal when another solicitation drops. Surge support allows to the proposal manager to be a director of proposal operations ensuring that any business unit that needs proposal support gets the appropriate support at the right time.
Mid-Tiers who utilize surge support are also showing their confidence in their proposal manager. They are boldly stating that they trust their proposal manager’s professional project management expertise to set (or maintain) a budget to ensure that all proposal operations are well-managed.
Surge support isn’t just for busy times. Surge support can also be for more routine tasks that are labor- and time-intensive. We recently assisted a newly hired proposal director with archiving over 5 years’ worth of proposal artifacts, including solicitations, proposals, graphics, resumes, teaming agreements, and debriefs. All tolled, more than 4,000 files were catalogued and archived. The proposal director used this information to create a comprehensive study of the company’s growth from a small business to a very successful mid-tier. We were also able to cull out “that favorite graphic we used back in 2012…you know, the green one?” We found resumes for every candidate we’d put forth for jobs. There were happy moments “our first big win” and sad moments “testimonials from clients we’d supported during the tragic events and aftermath of 9/11.”
Even if you have a proposal manager, especially if you have a proposal manger, think about surge support. Your competition is already doing it!