Prepare a structure for the proposal to ensure you include all essential information. If you are responding to a Request for Proposal, write your bid in the format specified by the client. For other proposals, create a logical structure that demonstrates your understanding of the client’s requirements, sets clear objectives, describes your approach, deliverables and costs, and describes your credentials.
Thank the client for the opportunity to put forward a proposal. Outline the background to the consulting project, describing the client’s business environment, setting out the challenges the client faces and summarizing the requirements of the project. This demonstrates that you understand the client’s needs. State that your consultancy has the experience and skills to meet the project requirements and provide the client with measurable results.
List the objectives for the project in precise terms so that the client is clear about what your proposal includes. A wide-ranging objective, such as “to transform the client’s business,” could lead to misunderstanding about the scope of your proposal and result in disputes about cost and performance. Keep the objective specific, such as “To develop a production line training program that will improve productivity by 5 percent and reduce waste by 7 percent.”
Describe how you will tackle the project. Include information on the research or interviews you will carry out. Explain how your approach complies with best practice or introduces an innovative process for improved results. Set out what you require from the client, such as access to key personnel for interviews or relevant documents.
List the deliverables that you will provide at the end of the project. Deliverables might include a feasibility study, an audit of the client’s resources, a report on market opportunities or a training plan. Specifying what you will deliver, as with setting precise objectives, helps to avoid misunderstandings and potential disputes. Provide a detailed time frame and an estimate of fees and related costs for the project. Highlight any costs that the client will settle directly, such as the cost of renting a hotel for a training program. State your preference for staged payments.
Describe your credentials for handling the projects, including relevant licenses and accreditations. Set out your experience in handling similar projects, describing the results you achieved and including references to relevant case studies. Summarize the benefits of selecting your consultancy for the project and thank the client for the opportunity to put forward proposals.