Maximizing Proposal Win Rates for AEC Firms

AEC Firms Can Increase Win Rates with Pursuit Intelligence and Targeted Proposals

How important is your proposal win rate?

With the high degree of complexity in responding to RFPs, the time, money, and effort your firm is investing can add up quickly.  And with a proposal hit rate of around 40% across the AEC industry, it’s critical that firms make sound pursuit decisions and craft winning pursuit strategies. Asking the right questions and looking at the right data can help you identify which projects to pursue and optimize your pursuit strategies to maximize your hit rate and grow your firm’s revenue.

Pursuing the right projects

Whether you currently have an official go/no go process or are accustomed to a more informal discussion, establishing specific pursuit criteria and systematizing pursuit approvals can help make sure you go after winnable projects, increase your success rate, and allow you to track this data over time.

Asking questions like these can help you identify if the opportunity is one you can win and is the right fit for your firm at this particular time:

  • Have we worked with this client before?
  • What was the experience working with this client (For them and you?)
  • Who's the competition?
  • What is our track record against XYZ firm for this type of project?
  • Where have we won or lost against this competitor?
  • Does this client always select a preferred design or construction firm, or do they follow a prescribed evaluation process?
  • Do we have appropriate resources available to work on the proposal AND the project?

By digitizing your go/no go process with tools like aec360 CRM, you can make informed decisions and start to build a history to fine-tune these decision processes going forward.

Sample Go/No Go form snapshot in aec360

Sample Go/No-Go form snapshot in aec360

Visibility of project history with aec360

Having visibility into similar projects that you’ve either submitted proposals for or actually completed can also play a key role in whether or not to pursue a particular new project.

aec360 archives your firm’s proposal history in an easily searchable manner, and automatically provides visibility into similar projects and their performance. This can help marketing teams quickly see the results of your proposals and project outcomes and use this data to predict your chances of future success.

Tapping into relationships and experience

Exploiting your firm’s experience and relationships is key to winning more proposals.  When proposing on new work, the extent of your experience working with that client, owner, or other related parties and the strength of those relationships, can be a major factor in winning that work. For example, if you’ve never worked with a particular client before and have limited relationships with the other parties in the deal, you may not have a strong chance of winning and should focus your resources elsewhere.

aec360 provides pursuit strength indicators that look at your firm’s history working with these parties to present pursuit scores that help you evaluate how well positioned you are to win the proposal.  This strength indicator can help provide additional insights into whether or not it makes sense to invest in the proposal process.

Opportunity overview with Go/No Go strengths indicator


Opportunity Overview with Go/No-Go Strengths Indicator in aec360

Enabling win/loss analytics

Tracking win/loss decisions and the reasons for those outcomes can help you gain greater insight into your firm’s strengths and weaknesses within specific clients, markets, and services, as well as competitors. Understanding why an opportunity was lost can give you the information you need to improve and present your firm better the next time.

aec360 can track proposal outcomes and associated feedback to help you analyze where you win or lose and why so that you can make more informed decisions and build better pursuit strategies the next time you pursue a particular client or project type.

Submitting winning proposals

Once you’ve decided to pursue a new piece of work, it’s highly important that you put the firm’s best foot forward by referencing the right project experience and highlighting the most relevant qualifications for your team. This requires having visibility of your project history, along with all of the attributes you may want to search when looking for similar projects to reference in your proposals.

With aec360 CRM, your firm gains access to a centralized repository not only of all of your project history and experience, but your people and their skills and qualifications as well.  aec360 also provides a dynamic proposal document generator that can help you quickly build customized project sheets and employee resumes so that you’re putting forth the best possible qualifications to win the work.

Generation of project sheet directly from the CRM


Generation of project sheet directly from the CRM

A comprehensive approach to increasing your hit rate and maximizing revenue

Increasing your firm’s revenue requires more than simply submitting as many proposals as you can and hoping enough will win. It’s about having the right information available to make solid pursuit decisions and spending the time to select the best opportunities that will breed success.  This, coupled with the ability to adapt pursuit strategies and teams based on the information you have available, can be the difference between winning and losing.  

Find out more about how aec360 can help your firm maximize its proposal win rate and grow your revenue.

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