The Competitive Assessment Process
Identifying Customer Needs
All customer requirements are real but do not necessarily have the same importance.
Compliance issues are the “must haves,” which all offerors comply with but which don’t produce
differences among proposals. Compliance is a necessary but not sufficient condition to winning.
Discriminators are more than the requirements. Discriminators might be a lower risk approach, for instance.
Discriminators result from an assessment against the customer’s Most Important Requirements (MIRs).
In order to win, your offer must:
- offer something unique that no competitor can match
- that distinction must be important to your customer
- you must convince your customer that you can and will deliver as promised at an acceptable price
Leave the company ego behind. See yourself as others see you.
Utilize unbiased, objective sources, such as: customers, other companies, and consultants.
Resist the tendency to over-emphasize what you perceive to be your strengths.
Let the customer will be the judge.
ECG can help you find competitor company data in several places:
- Annual reports
- Capabilities statements
- Trade shows, exhibits, and other presentations
- Public data
- Dun and Bradstreet
- Government reports
- Business libraries
- Trade magazines and newspapers
- FOIA requests
- Source selection debriefings
- Interviews (face-to-face or telephone)
- Employees and ex-employees
- Internet or search services (e.g., LEXIS-NEXIS)
- Competition databases
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