The Power of a Compliance Matrix

One of the most important first tasks to do when after receiving a RFP is the prepare a compliance matrix. Below are some tips that you can utilize to make the most of this aspect of proposal writing.

Every Bid Needs a Compliance Matrix – no matter how big or small every bid needs a compliance matrix. This can be a useful planning document before any writing begins and it needs to be continuously updated throughout the proposal process. This is useful for the internal process of go/no go and also for the customer to feel comfortable with clear response.

Tailor the Matrix for your customer and setting – Customize the content of your compliance matrix to the situation and teams needs. A basic Compliance Matrix will usually be in spreadsheet format. Shred the RFP line by line and extract the key requirements using the “shall, will, must” words. Keep each section with a title the question and the page it was found. Along with the other aspects of the matrix, for internal use add some columns for the writer assignments themes, visual and page allocations. Follow the customer’s lead use the numbering system that is found in the RFP. Use the customers words and phrases, do not paraphrase or your own words. Use this as a reference to plan the outline of the proposal.

Submit the response matrix with your proposal – The response matrix is a simplified version of your compliance matrix. By submitting a response matrix allows for the evaluator to quickly locate your compliant response to each requirement. Pay special attention to requirements that are.

Use the compliance matrix as a selling tool – A Response Matrix can leave a good impression on the mind of a evaluator making their job easier. Design the table that lines up with the requirement in one row and response in the row below. Then shade the response a different color. Make the summary easy to read and concise. Show the customer you are thorough, thoughtful and focused.

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