Self-Scoring Proposal Services
Self-scoring solicitations refer to a new US federal contract vehicle that has been introduced by GSA and a few other federal agencies. It aims to reduce government costs, and at the same time, get the contractors involved in the scoring process so that they become better aware of their strengths and weaknesses. It is expected that the outcome of this process is higher quality and better-managed contracts at lower costs to the government.
There is a fundamental difference between Self-scoring proposals and other types of proposals you prepare for federal solicitations. This is a new system that many seasoned proposal managers/writers are unfamiliar with. The GSA self-scoring proposal development process has no writing involved. Instead, there is a huge document search, collection, preparation, and management work to be done on your past performed contracts and other capabilities.
How does the Self-scoring Solicitation work?
Self-scoring solicitations are a simplified acquisition process that helps potential contractors in evaluating their capacities objectively. In a self-scoring solicitation, there is a division of work between you and the government when it comes to evaluating and scoring your proposal. In simple terms, what you do is:
- Assess yourself and fill out the self-scoring spreadsheet
- Substantiate your claims by providing the needed documents properly, correctly, and with proper highlighting, etc.
In turn, when all proposals reach the government agency, the evaluator:
- Review proposals for compliance and remove all non-compliant proposals
- Rank remaining proposals based on score
- Check substantiations
- Picks the top companies with highest score (based on each pool award limitations)
Two Main Risks
There are two main causes of disqualification or loss of the opportunity. Both of these causes stem from the fact that many contractors do not appreciate the complexities involved in a self-scoring solicitation. Therefore, they dismiss the need to get professional help and consultation when preparing their proposal package. These risks are:
- Unrealistic scoring (too low or too high)
Non-compliance with the rules and requirements is a major issue. This can be caused by misunderstanding those requirements, missing some parts of the RFP, confusing the self-scoring system with ordinary proposal process, not giving the proper weight to different parts of the RFP.
Other causes of losing the opportunity when you do not have the proper self-scoring proposal training include:
- Not getting the Signatures from previous COs on time
- Lack of knowledge on how to maximize your score through available means and resources
- Weak or hard to validate justifications of your score
- Stretching the Scores Too Far
- Incorrect Submission of the Proposal
These pie charts are examples from HCaTS solicitation and show how high the disqualification rate can be in a typical self-scoring solicitation.
Planning to Win a Self-scoring Solicitation Opportunity
Having a win strategy is essential in any competition. It is no different in a self-scoring solicitation. In fact, this is one of the areas that many participants don’t take seriously considering the apparent simplicity of this type of solicitation. The below list includes some of the concepts that form the core of a win strategy when dealing with self-scoring solicitations:
- Compliance is the common theme in everything you do for preparing your proposal
- Past performance is the most important criteria when selecting projects
- Make maximize the use of your commercial (non-governmental) projects
- Maximize your score using Per-Contract Scoring System and Assessment (GDIC’s Self-Scoring Matrix)
- If allowed in the RFP, bring in as many partners as you can to fill the gaps
- When getting past performance evaluations, contact friendly COs who know you best
- Check Compliance, Think Compliance, Eat Compliance
- Get professional help and consultation, especially if you have not done it before or you have not been successful in other self-scoring solicitations
In simple terms, here is what you have to do to maximize your score:
- Understand the requirements
- Gauge your chances of winning
- Ensure you are compliant
- Maximize your score
- Find partners who will fill in the gaps
GDIC's Self-Scoring Services
With a deep and varied understanding of different types of self-scoring processes, we have been able to provide valuable insight to our clients and helped them in understanding the requirements, selecting their projects, evaluating the score, and finding partners and subcontractors to team up and raise their score. Our focus is on targeting a scoring level that generates higher credibility in your capabilities by introducing past performance success in the best way to fill all the gaps and overcome competition.
Below are some of the services we provide in all self-scoring solicitation proposals:
- Free initial consultation
- Full Proposal Development
- Scoring Assessment and Optimization
- Forms Preparation
- Full Proposal Assembly – Cradle to Grave
- Complete and Multiple Compliancy Checks
- Reviewing and Auditing
- Compliancy Checks
- Score Optimization Checks
Why GDIC Excels?
General Services Administration is a major source of US government business opportunities in all sectors of industry. In recent years, GSA has been using more of the new contracting vehicle and solicitation evaluation framework called Self-Scoring Proposals rather than from the traditional proposals mainly consisting of Management, Technical and Pricing section. By getting the contractors involved in the scoring process so that they become better aware of their strengths and weaknesses, GSA hopes that the outcome of this process is higher quality and better managed contracts at lower costs to the government. However, the new system has its complexities, and very few contractors can take advantage of the full potential of these solicitations to secure contracts.
GDI Consulting has been working on GSA proposals for years, and is an expert in Self-Scoring contract vehicles, both from GSA (e.g. OASIS, Alliant, STARS II, and HCaTS) and other agencies (e.g. SEC OneIT) with over 100 proposal completed and many wins. We provide consultation, proposal development, and proposal review services at different stages of its development. So, whenever you decide to enter into a Self-Scoring federal bid, let our vast experience bring out the best of your corporate assets and professional capabilities and support you in winning your desired contract.