Q&A: A Major Government Contractor Discusses How the Right Research Helps in Re-Competing for Contracts - (Archived)

It goes without saying that we are more effective professionally when we receive feedback on our performance.  Otherwise it is easy to make false assumptions that could put business relationships in jeopardy.

This certainly rings true when it comes to the government contracting sector.  Many contractors work closely with their federal clients, but rarely have the opportunity to receive honest feedback regarding performance.  Because contractors are often closely tied in the trenches with their clients, they often don’t receive feedback that can help them course-correct when re-competing for contracts.

The FedPulse blog team recently had the chance to speak with a Business Development Manager at one of the top 10 government contractors, who discusses why it is valuable for contractors to perform client surveys for enhancing overall performance.

FedPulse: Tell us about your company.

Contractor:  We focus mainly in the government sector and we provide solutions that allow agencies to perform more efficiently and effectively.  Ninety percent of our business is comprised of federal agencies with a smaller focus on state and local government.  We offer services and solutions to the Department of Defense, the Intelligence Community, as well as civilian agencies, which is where my focus lies.  We do everything from complex scientific modeling to IT support services and everything in between.

FedPulse: What is your role in the organization?

Contractor: I am on the business development team.  We work with clients and prospects to uncover business opportunities that fall in the sweet spot of our core services.  I focus on growing and maintaining existing contracts, as well as securing new contracts.

FedPulse: How does market research help you when re-competing for contracts?

Contractor: It helps tremendously.  We are living, breathing and eating with clients at all times.  As such, it helps to have an objective outsider give us a fair assessment  of our performance.  And, when you work closely with a client, sometimes it becomes all-too familiar.  As a result, we are not fully connected with how we are actually perceived by our clients.  By doing this type of research, we are able to validate what we already know and uncover areas for improvement.

FedPulse: Do you find that this type of research helps you re-win business?

Contractor: I would say, yes.  For a recent client survey, through Market Connections, we are still awaiting the outcomes.  However, in general, this type of research is ideal because it validates what we know and points out critical areas that require us to take corrective action.

FedPulse: What are some of the biggest challenges and opportunities for contractors in today’s market?

Contractor:  Well, the biggest challenge overall is government’s moving toward modernization with mobile and other solutions to better meet citizens’ needs.  However, the government is now pushing for the lowest cost technical solutions, which don’t always match up with its mission and goals.  The bottom-line is that you get what you pay for, which is sometimes forgotten in the contracting process.

In terms of the current budget climate, things are definitely becoming more challenging.  But, these things are cyclical in nature and the market will bounce back.  And, contractors that provide top-quality services will be able to continue competing for business opportunities.

We would like to thank this contractor for taking the time to speak with us.  If you are interested in learning more about research solutions from Market Connections that will help you re-compete and win, visit www.marketconnectionsinc.com.

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