Here is a simple approach that can not only help you achieve compliance, but can help you exceed compliance by answering all of the customer’s questions (including the ones they forgot to ask).
Here is a simple approach to help you cover all the bases in your proposal. For each section/requirement that you must address, make sure you answer: who, what, where, how, when, and why. Repeat it until it rolls off your tongue and you have it memorized.
- Who: who will do the work, who will manage the work, who does the customer call if there is a problem, who is responsible for what
- What: what needs to be done/delivered, what will be required to do it, what can the customer expect, what it will cost
- Where: where will the work be done, where will it be delivered
- How: how will be work be done, how will it be deployed, how will it be managed, how will you achieve quality assurance and customer satisfaction, how will risks be mitigated, how long will it take, how will the work benefit the customer
- When: when will you start, when will key milestones be scheduled, when will the project be complete, when is payment due
- Why: why have you chosen the approaches and alternatives you have selected, why should the customer select you
This simple little phrase (who, what, where, how, when, and why) can help you ensure that your proposal says everything needed to “answer the mail.” For each of the customer’s requirements, go through the list and you will probably have everything covered. You can use it for inspiration when writing, and you can use it like a checklist for reviewing a draft proposal.
And you thought proposal writing was supposed to be hard!