Election 2016: Are You Ready for the New Wave of Government Sales?

Posted by Skip Blackburn on Nov 4, 2016 3:00:00 PM

39205505_s.jpgWith under a week to go until the election, politics is understandably dominating the news cycle. But what does a new president mean for your government sales? A lot, actually.

While Clinton and Trump disagree on a number of issues, the candidates have explicitly stated the need for improved military strength, in conjunction with a significant increase in military spending associated with both of their plans.

Whether that comes in the form of building a wall, investing in troop strength or technological advances, that could mean a lot of business coming down the pipeline to government vendors and contractors. So before you cast your vote, it’s time to ask yourself an important question: Are you ready to handle the sudden increase in proposal and capture activity that comes with a big bump in military spending?

Prepare for the Surge

With both candidates on board with increased military spending, you can expect a surge of business. But if you aren’t prepared to meet the rise in demand, you’ll throw away your chance to capitalize on these new government sales opportunities.

It’s just like when you see a hurricane warning in the weather forecast - you stock up on essentials like flashlights, clean water, toilet paper and nonperishable food items before it hits, not after. And when you see a big wave of government sales opportunities coming your way, you should prepare yourself in advance to meet the new demand.

Assess Your Proposal Process

Once the proposal opportunities start pouring in, you’ll need to be proactive about your capture management process. With new business on the horizon, the last thing you have the time to do is train new people or track business opportunities through outdated spreadsheets.

New software platforms allow your business to stretch the resources you already have available in your capture management team. Let your team work smarter and keep track of the new opportunities coming in.

If you don't already have capture executive management software in place, now is the time to get one. Once the new president takes office, you'll already be behind the eight ball if you haven't.

You might track 20 or 30 opportunities using spreadsheets, but as your capture opportunities grow, spreadsheets become bulky and unmanageable. You need something that tracks data in a clean and consistent workflow, from tracking to award.

Line Up the Manpower

Once you have the tools you need, manpower is the next big concern. Do you have enough salespeople, capture execs and account managers?

Hiring full time in advance of expected business opportunities gets expensive, but you can always rent from a consulting firm. If the business comes through, you'll have people on tap ready to step in. If it doesn't you're not out the cost of onboarding a new hire and paying a full-time salary.

Polishing Up Proposals

When the leads you're tracking jumps by a significant margin, say from 30 to 50, you'll need help when it comes to proposals. After all, your proposal is what wins the bid, so you need to ensure they are all as complete and targeted as possible.

Preparing each proposal takes hours of manpower, and when you are already operating at full capacity during one the busiest times of the year, you probably don’t have the extra bodies necessary at your disposal. So before the presidential transfer in January, lineup the extra help for your business now.

Because even experienced consultants need some time to get up to speed on your business, so waiting until the last minute won’t cut it. But if you get on the ball and line up the help you’ll need now, you're prepared to meet the wave of business as it arrives on the shore.

Be Flexible, Scalable and Ready

With the right software and temporary manpower lined up to help with capture management and the proposal process, you can take advantage of the sudden surge in government spending. It may not last past the next four years, but while the opportunity is there, you can grow your business and expand capacity.

Real Costs of a Full-time Capture Executive vs Consultant?

Topics: consulting

As BIT Solutions’ President & CEO, Mr. Blackburn is responsible for all business strategy, opportunity development, capture and leadership of the sales organization, consulting practice and all product design. He has over 35 years of business leadership experience and expertise in Software, IT, Network and Telecommunications industries both in commercial and Government sectors. An accomplished entrepreneur and strategist, Mr. Blackburn excels with strategic planning, client relations, and opportunity development and has built and grown several companies from startup to acquisition. Mr. Blackburn has worked in the Government arena for many years where he has been an executive at Accenture, IBM, SAIC and Netcom Technologies during his career of managing teams of capture executives and opportunities up to $500M and IDIQs up to $20B.

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