A Different Kind of Craftmanship
Pipeline management is a craft. Creating and maintaining an effective pipeline requires an experienced and skillful Business Development (BD) craftsperson. Craftsmanship exists in the weld of a pipefitter on a submarine, the tight lines of code written by a programmer, and the flawlessly managed project that is on time and on budget. Similarly, an extraordinary amount of craftsmanship also goes into the development of a company’s BD pipeline.
Every craftsperson needs the tools that can transform their skill and experience into a finely built product. Team Capture2 has built the master toolset for pipeline management. Business Development Pipeline Management is critical to every company’s sustainment and growth. Larger companies generally have dedicated individuals responsible for pipeline management. Smaller companies, especially those just starting out, often rely upon various Program Managers (PMs) or other positions to fill the BD pipeline, in addition to their primary responsibilities. Being management in a small company often means being a jack of all trades. Regardless of whether the BD Manager is a dedicated position, or a PM who is also responsible for pipeline management, the company’s future is in their hands. Pipeline management requires a craftsperson, and large or small, companies benefit when they are equipped with the most effective tools available.
Pipeline Management Tools of the Trade
What are the necessary tools for effective pipeline management? To answer that question, let’s first look at the basic elements of pipeline management:
- Pipeline development
- Prioritized pipeline
- Business development team management
- Pipeline reporting
Team Capture2 designed C2P’s pipeline management tools to fit the needs of the smallest business or a Fortune 500 company. C2P’s Pipeline Management feature is tightly integrated with other features that are critical to the capture process. Users can:
- Add an opportunity of interest from C2P’s Opportunity Search to their individual or company pipeline with a single click.
- Customize their pipeline view, add custom data, and priorities to all of the items in their pipeline.
- Easily share pipeline reports online with other licensed users on their team, or downloaded in Excel and PDF formats to share with other interested parties.
C2P’s Opportunity Search feature accesses an extensive list of Government data feeds, then uses Natural Language Processing (NLP) to break down the data into the key elements needed for capture planning. Search based on keywords, agencies, or even contract vehicles such as the Army’s Responsive Strategic Sourcing for Services (RS3) or the Navy’s Seaport NxG, just to name a couple of examples.
Companies have finite resources to dedicate to the capture and proposal process. Therefore, it’s important to prioritize the pipeline so that capture and proposal dollars are invested for the best return on investment (ROI). A prioritized pipeline begins with an opportunity assessment for each item in the pipeline. C2P‘s Probability of Win (PWin) feature provides an integrated tool for the calculation of PWin and displays it in the Pipeline. Other important considerations for the opportunity assessment can be established, such as a weighted revenue value, Gate Review decisions, etc.
Coordinating and managing efforts across a company’s BD Team is not a simple 1 – 2 – 3 formula. C2P’s approach to role-based permissions scales to fit the need. The Business Development Team rarely consists of only individuals assigned a Business Development title. It is common for VPs, Directors, and PMs outside of the BD organization to be part of the BD Team. Efficient pipeline management and Business Development Team management requires that every single member of the team has the necessary access to manage their assigned opportunity. The BD Manager must have the ability to share information among the team and ensure everyone is on the same page. C2P allows the BD Manager to control pipeline views, reports, and even the creation of custom fields that are displayed in the pipeline.
Riding hard on the heels of managing the BD Team is the responsibility to keep all the stakeholders informed. Most companies conduct a pipeline review on a periodic basis. Unfortunately, many spend countless hours preparing for their pipeline review by collecting information from various Capture Managers and then compiling it into neatly formatted spreadsheets. This is time that could be spent on real BD and capture activities. As part of C2P’s Pipeline Management feature, users have the ability to easily customize pipeline reports that fit the needs of their company’s pipeline review. Create the report once, tweak it whenever needed, but always know that it can be exported and ready to print at the drop of the hat. The only thing that C2P cannot provide is the peace of mind that the printer won’t jam when there are only five minutes until the meeting starts.
Finally, there’s one more C2P Pipeline Management tool that comes in handy – the ability to create unique opportunities. When Task Orders that come to a company directly from many of the Multiple Award Contracts (MACs), or originate as a commercial opportunity from another company, they can’t be found in online databases. But as sources of potential revenue, these opportunities are important. C2P provides a means to create unique opportunities as well as the means to track and report on them in the pipeline.
Pipeline management is vital to the health of every company. It takes a BD Manager that is a master craftsperson to create and manage that pipeline to ensure the well being of the company. Team Capture2’s goal is to provide the finest toolset available to achieve that goal.