Color team reviews are considered a standard industry practice for hosting organized and effective team reviews at set increments during the proposal process. But simply following the color team review schedule doesn't guarantee maximum productivity. We've laid out five tips to improve the effectiveness of your Color Team reviews.
The participants are a major consideration in all color team reviews. Selecting the appropriate personnel for your color teams is critical to ensuring that reviews are productive, accurate and a sound investment. Successful organizations don’t just assign whoever’s available to their review teams — they take the time to consider a person’s technical aptitude, creativity, familiarity with the customer, writing ability and dedication to the capture effort. It’s critical that team members understand the bid, know the customer on a basic level and are invested in winning.
A common Gold Team disaster can occur if leadership hasn't been adequately informed or involved in color team reviews prior to this stage and then requests major last minute changes to the proposal content, price or strategy. Many proposal professionals have found themselves burning the midnight oil to make significant changes to a document they thought was nearly finished, rushing to meet the impending deadline. To prevent this from happening, proposal and capture managers should brief company leadership on the output of their color team reviews, regardless of whether leadership participates in the reviews themselves.
A "Price to Win" analysis usually occurs around the Green Team review stage as part of a thorough pricing review. It’s an effective way of ensuring that an in-depth pricing review is worth the effort and the time spent. Leadership needs to understand both the Green Team's pricing analysis and the customer's perspective on that price in order to determine if the bid is accurately priced to win.
The Color Team review model typically involves five separate color reviews. Conducting every review color isn't imperative to every project. Some proposals — especially smaller ones — require less frequent, more consolidated reviews to achieve the same effect. If you're working on a larger proposal with many separate sections, then sticking to the full color spectrum of reviews is a smart way to stay organized. Before beginning the review process, determine what's best for your particular RFP, deadline and goals.
Online proposal management and collaborative tools can help you define your review process by guiding participants on their responsibilities, maintaining version control, keeping Color Team review costs low and ensuring that no comment is lost along the way. A more seamless, streamlined and effective proposal review process will help ensure that your team delivers a high quality proposal, no matter how complex the project.