We know that non-compliance can cost you a place on the short list. But research also shows that clients highly value responsiveness in proposals – that is proposals that address their underlying needs. Sometimes this means coming up with a new offer that does not comply with the request.
For example: A customer needs the grass cut to a specific height. Their bid request specified a weekly cutting by push mower for the calendar year.
1. A compliant but arguably non-responsive bidder could agree to cut the grass weekly for 52 weeks, even though the grass might be dormant in winter.
2. A non-compliant but responsive bidder offers to use a robot mowing system that senses grass height and cuts as necessary, thus keeping the lawn at the desired level but reducing the number of mowings and perhaps the total cost.
3.Others could offer to cut the grass weekly with a riding mower versus the push mower, also noncompliant but responsive.
As the examples show, deciding whether to be fully compliant and responsive is an implicit question when determining your solution and strategy.
More information on this subject is in the Shipley Proposal Guide – see COMPLIANCE AND RESPONSIVENESS.