The Time to HIGH FIVE your Contracting Officers is NOW!! Previous item Federal Buying Season... Next item What we have here should...

The full Definition of a HIGH FIVE: A slapping of upraised right hands by two people, as in celebration.

high fiveThe Federal buying season is upon us. The most exciting and hectic time of the year for Federal market-focused companies will ensue over the next six weeks. The companies that are prepared to take advantage of this pivotal time will maximize their profits and their potential during the budget spending frenzy.

Historical estimates show that agencies will spend anywhere from 40-82% of their budgets over the next six weeks. Seasonality trends also show that in times of an “in-place” Federal budget, companies can book as much as 70% of their annual revenue during this six-week period.

Here are our FIVE key ways for you to differentiate with the people responsible for competing and awarding these funds…the Contracting Officers and Specialists.

1. Over Communicate – Take the time with your Contracting Officer contacts to learn about their challenges, their competition priorities, and the RFQs that your company can provide compelling quoting responses for over the next six weeks.

Net Result: The Contracting Officer needs to see you as a reliable resource that will be highly responsive to RFQs in a compliant manner over the next six weeks.

2. Provide S.L.A. Driven RFQ Response Assurance – Let your Contracting Officer know what your best response rates will be for RFQs. An example would include confirmation of RFQ receipt within one hour of issuance, scrubbing of the RFQ with any relevant feedback or follow up clarifications within four hours of RFQ receipt, and full assurance that all RFQs will be submitted in accordance with the initial due date.

Net Result: The Contracting Officer becomes 100% confident that you will respond in a communicative/collaborative manner to all RFQs in a timely manner.

3. Convey All Resources Available – If you have technical resources to scrub RFQs, after business hour quoting resources, sales support back-up to help with responses, on-line support tools, OEM engineering resources, or any other additional resource that will make the Contracting Officer’s job easier over this six-week period, ensure they are fully aware of your “tool kit.”

Net Result: The Contracting Officers fully understand the unique or differentiated resources you have available to them in their busiest part of the fiscal year.

4. Provide Contract Vehicle Options – All Contracting Officers have their preference for contract vehicles. These are many times driven by agency bias or mandate. However, make sure that you clearly communicate the contract vehicles that your company has access to for them to issue RFQs against.

Net Result: The Contracting Officer is both aware and influenced to compete for RFQs that your company has access to yielding more RFQs that can be quoted in a compliant manner.

5. Provide Socio-Economic Designated Alternatives – Next to the volumes of RFQs needed to be competed and awarded during the busy season, Contracting Officers will be HIGHLY focused on attaining their mandated Socio-Economic and Small Business goals. If you are a company with these types of designations, make sure that you over-communicate these designations to your Contracting Officers. If you do not have these designations but you partner with companies that do, make sure that the Contracting Officer is aware that you have these options should they require that procurement path for RFQs.

Net Result: Companies can either exploit their own designations for set-aside or more limited RFQ competitions or leverage their network of these types of designated companies to not lose revenue opportunities due to a set-aside designated competition.

Do these five things well and the Contracting Officers you work with over the next six weeks will be cueing you up for a HIGH FIVE once their busy season is over.

Here’s to lots of HIGH FIVING all the way until September 30th!!!!

To learn more about Federal Buying from Jeff and the rest of the EDGE360 editorial team, click here.