Proposal managers run a million miles a minute in the business world to keep up with new RFP response requests and proactively go after new business. It’s hard to step back and take stock of your strategy in such a hectic environment. Often, we end up overlooking the “why,” “how,” and “when” of RFPs, and forget to ask:
- Why is our win rate low?
- How can we improve it?
- When can we expect it to improve?
Asking these questions is the first step, but you’ll need trusted metrics to make the responses actionable. Analytics dashboards and reports from RFP software give proposal managers real-time intelligence into RFP pipelines, usage data, and beyond, helping them win higher quality deals more often.
Here we’ll take a quick look at the five top metric types your team should be tracking to maximize its impact and how proposal management software helps.
1. Start with great proposal content
Great RFP responses start with great content. It’s as simple as that. But how do you know what content is the most valuable? Building a 360-degree view into your content, as well as the people who create it, allows you to pinpoint:
- When content needs to be updated
- Which assets (and creators) perform best
- What content is used most
With content management metrics for proposals, you can discover what content performs best and what content needs refreshing (or deleting!). Consider completing monthly or quarterly content reviews, as well as additional reviews any time you make pricing changes or add new features to your products and services.
Finally, with RFP response software, automated alerts help guarantee your content always evolves in lockstep with your offerings, so you’re armed with the latest, approved content every time.
2. Prioritize your RFP response projects
“We handle about 2,500 RFPs per year. Each RFP has at least 200 or 300 questions,” a Senior Systems Engineering Manager at a major telecom company told us recently.
Does that sound familiar? With that kind of volume, there’s no way there’s enough time to track everything manually. RFP prioritization metrics provide managers with a lifeline by optimizing the proposal process and categorizing RFPs based on importance and immediacy.
With RFP prioritization analytics, managers can track:
- Proposals with impending deadlines
- Proposals that are pending completion
By setting up automated alerts, you’re always in-the-know about important proposal status changes, like due date changes, fast approaching deadlines, completion dates, and beyond. From there, you can prioritize your RFPs and improve time management and visibility to make sure nothing falls through the cracks.
3. Never stop improving your RFP response process
Many factors influence win rates but tracking the right RFP metrics can help you pinpoint weak areas and improve proposal success. With the right mix of key performance indicators (KPIs), you can identify long-term problems with content, staffing, processes that contribute to bid rejections and categorize critical metrics for more accurate proposal management predictions.
With the right proposal management software, you can figure out whether:
- You have the right people in your proposal management team
- You’re targeting the right customers
- Your content is relevant for your target audiences
RFP metrics provide you with long-term insights into proposal management, so you can make smarter, data-backed decisions. That’s why Upland Qvidian includes real-time analytics dashboard designed to improve RFP response management cycles and prove your team’s value.
4. Build a deal-winning RFP response team
RFP metrics also offer short-term value. When assembling a qualified proposal management team of in-house and freelance contributors and subject-matter experts, you should know:
- Who has the time/skills to bid for projects and respond to RFPs
- Who provides the most value
- Who has a record of success
- Who has the fastest response rates
Sometimes the best insights are the most specific, like your top-performing team members for a particular project, niche, or industry. When you use proposal metrics to uncover where people excel, you can easily delegate tasks to the right team members at the right time.
5. Prove your team’s value and ROI
RFPs take a significant investment of time and resources. So, it’s crucial that you track benchmark metrics to understand:
- How long RFPs take to complete?
- How many team members are involved?
- What’s the cost of hiring these team members?
This will help you calculate the overall ROI for each RFP response you write.
The future of RFP response analytics
The days when managers manually tracked RFP response analytics are gone. Automated metrics are the future of proposal management. Consider where you need to improve, benchmark your current approach, then start tracking your improvement!