TechnoMile’s innovative solution for government contracting companies brings AI-powered benefits for integrated capture-to-contract process management. Looking at the stages of the federal government acquisition process, when viewed from both the government agency and contracting company’s perspective, it’s apparent how much potential value an AI-driven solution can provide for the government contractors.
The federal acquisition process is a long and laborious process involving huge amounts of data, right from needs analysis through to the award phase. In the current digital economy, there is never a lack of data, but it is more about how to convert the treasures of data into a gold mine. Therefore, the biggest challenge faced during this century is to bring life to troves of business data and turn them into an asset for the business. Artificial Intelligence (AI) using Machine Learning (ML) or Deep Learning is one such technique companies are employing to add value to the business, be it to identify and mitigate risks or to bring efficiency in the processes. TechnoMile is embracing this state-of-the-art technique across their products to bring value to their government contracting customers.
Per FAR 1.102, “The vision for the Federal Acquisition System is to deliver on a timely basis the best value product or service to the customer, while maintaining the public’s trust and fulfilling public policy objectives”
While the primary objective of federal government agencies is to secure cost-effective and innovative solutions from their vendors, agencies also evaluate other important metrics during the procurement process such as contractor’s past performances, quality, and timeliness of products & services delivered. From the perspective of government contractors, the ultimate aim would of course be to win contracts however there is an increased focus to establish strategic relationships and partner with government agencies to co-innovate and deliver value at optimal cost. In order to accomplish both objectives, they want to find out how and where in this acquisition cycle can they attain a competitive edge and increase process efficiency. Therefore, let’s walk through a typical federal government contracting process and highlight some of the challenges involved in the process. We will then investigate how contracting companies can overcome those challenges for a successful business outcome using TechnoMile’s AI-powered offerings.
A typical federal government acquisition process comprising of 6 stages:
Analysis: During this initial stage, government agencies identify the need, business drivers and/or the pain points to be addressed. The first step towards this direction is to conduct market research around their needs and gather basic data around the offerors. A government agency may take the help of the Program Management Office (PMO) to document the specifications or requirements for procurement in the form of Request for Information (RFI) to seek a more in-depth understanding on offerors solution and/or Request for Proposal (RFP) to solicit offers from offerors if adequate data is available to start the source selection process. From an offeror or contracting company’s perspective, a thorough understanding of government acquisition needs, and the knowledge about who are the people involved in the source selection process, and the evaluation criteria, forms the basis for a successful bid. Having this information becomes critical for offerors so that they can map out the account strategy to win the deal.
This is where TechnoMile’s Growth and Competitive Insights (CI) product helps offerors to identify, establish and nourish the relationship with the source selection team or the influencers of the acquisition process early in the cycle. TechnoMile’s solution also helps with providing insights into the competition space so that offerors can prepare adequately when solicitations are released.
Planning: It is the post-analysis stage in the acquisition cycle, government agencies at this point already have clearly identified the pain points, what their needs are and the business drivers to acquire a product or services. During the planning stage, PMO may get involved to help define the supplies, materials, or services requirements along with necessary funding needs. Government agencies also identify the data requirements in a standardized form called Contract Data Requirements List (CDRL). The CDRL can be considered as data about data i.e. It defines what/how/when products or services must be delivered by the government contractor. The primary objective of including a CDRL as part of the solicitation is to provide clarity around the government’s minimum essential need, all in a single document. Each item in a CDRL can then be linked directly to a deliverable or a task in a Statement of Work (SoW) that contractors must deliver once the contract is awarded. TechnoMile’s AI/ML-powered Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) product has the inbuilt capability to manage CDRL elements in a contract, reducing the manual work significantly for the contractor’s contract team.
Initiation: Next stage in the acquisition process is the Contract Initiation where the PMO prepares the Acquisition Package (AP) for the procurement of supplies and/or services. A high-quality acquisition package not only reduces cycle-time but also eliminates potential errors requiring re-work. Although contracting companies are not directly involved in this process, TechnoMile’s Growth product helps offerors manage the capture process seamlessly and reduces the sales cycle time. TechnoMile’s GovSearch product augments the Growth solution by providing contracting companies a competitive advantage over their competition by delivering the intelligence around procurement needs of government and the people working on it.
Solicitation: In the Solicitation phase, the PMO submits the definitive version of the Acquisition Package (AP) to the awarding agency which then assigns a contract specialist to work on preparing and submitting the solicitation for approval. Once the solicitation is approved, it is typically issued through beta.sam.gov for participating contractors or offerors to bid. Once the solicitation is published or released by the government, a timely response with quality information makes or breaks the opportunity. With TechnoMile’s CLM product, contracting companies have less to worry about the quality of information or faster turnaround. A solicitation module within TechnoMile CLM product provides offerors the ability to digitize the standard forms such as SF33 using Optical Character Recognition (OCR) thereby reducing cycle-time and any associated human errors typically involved in a manual process. Using the TechnoMile product, offerors also are well prepared to deliver a compelling response to the RFP.
Evaluation: The evaluation phase is where offerors’ bids or proposals are received by the awarding agency. A full and fair assessment of proposals is performed based on the instructions in the solicitations to determine and qualify the most competitive proposal. Where applicable, the appropriate government agency will facilitate the negotiation between the contractors and the awarding agency. To be successful and profitable, contracting companies require both internal and external data to make informed decisions. By combining the power of TechnoMile’s CLM product with Competitive Insights, contractors can have a successful negotiation with the government agencies. Contracting teams are empowered with intelligent data from historical contracts to make smarter negotiations.
Award: In the final Award phase, the government agency upon completion of the evaluation and any negotiations, will determine the successful offeror. The assigned Contracting Officer (CO) will prepare the final award of the contract and formally notify the bidders. With TechnoMile’s CLM product, contracting companies will now be able to transfer every bit of information exchanged from start to finish in an acquisition process and administer the contracts digitally, giving the contracting team a full 360-degree view of the acquisition process. With the ability to bring curated data captured in Growth and ingesting external data like Solicitations, CDRLs, CLINs programmatically, companies can eliminate duplicate data entry and costly errors thus giving a seamless user experience. Also, if any part of the contract requires to be delivered by a sub-contractor due to contractual reasons, TechnoMile’s subcontractor management module provides a seamless process to select, team-up, onboard, and manage subcontractors.
TechnoMile is on a mission to effectively transform the experience for government contractors during the federal acquisition process, by helping digitize the Capture-to-Contract process and leveraging Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to automate the requisite tasks so that companies can focus their efforts in bringing efficiency and increase productivity. If you are in the federal government contracting business, it is about time to look deeper at your Capture to Contract process and analyze if they are performing to their fullest potential. Find out how TechnoMile’s AI-powered solutions can help you achieve the competitive edge. For more details on how TechnoMile can help your organizations contracting process, request a complimentary consultation with us or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org