Thursday, February 26, 2009

Anatomy of a proposal...the project team

Part of the Learn to Write Proposals online proposal guide.

It's a good idea to really sell your people when writing your business proposal - it can often be a clincher when there are similar bids that the client goes for the project team they prefer, so check exactly what they want - experience, enthusiasm etc., and really sell this in your proposal.

Include an organisation chart showing the reporting structures and hierarchy in your project team. If you don’t have internal capabilities to get graphic’s created professionally then outsource using a local company or a website such as It won’t cost a lot and it will give you reusable assets that make your proposal look fantastic. We'll look at graphics in your proposal in another article

Your team structure should show that you have adequate and appropriate resources in place to deliver the project.

Here's an example proposal graphic - you may want to use something similar and even show the project teams or individuals lower in the hierarchy:

So how to write a proposal selling the experience and skills of the project team? We have a bog standard resume we can dump in haven't we?

Think about your proposal philosophy though and that you always want to demonstrate the client benefit.

Do this by explaining why you have chosen this team to work on this particular project. Describe what their role in this project will be and follow this up by explaining what benefits they will bring to the project by giving examples or even testimonials from other clients on how they have succeeding in similar roles in other projects. You may even want to highlight one or two individuals that offer unique skills to your project in the executive summary.

Your people don’t work anywhere else. They are a huge differentiator. Demonstrate how your people make you look uniquely capable of delivering the contract.

There’s no need to include details for everyone who will work on the project – but you should include everyone who has a decision making or client facing role- and always check to ensure that you are providing the relevant information that's been asked from in the tender or RFP.

Heres a sample proposal resume:

Additionally, I would recommend having around five different projects that you could choose from, but only pick the two or three most relevant to the team members role in this project.

Remember when writing business proposals to try and show the impact that each team member had on the project and the benefit this brought to the client. to present your company profile.