Even evaluation firms and other types of evidence producers can benefit from evidence gathered from self-reflection, niche analysis, facilitators and barriers assessment, and contextual analysis to make strategic decisions
by Julian K, Bagyendera
Imbalance in bidding for vs receiving grants put considerable strain on firm
Provide and Equip (P&E) is a Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) consultancy firm with headquarters in Uganda that mainly sources for assignments through participating in competitive bidding. The firm was spending considerable resources in terms of staff time and funds in writing and submitting proposals, which was constraining other activities.
Data from analyses guided strategic bidding practices
After analysis of P&E achievements against targets in 2017, P&E realised that 33 proposals had been submitted yet only 6 (18%) had been awarded amounting to $202,204. The staff further studied the reasons given for not being successful for the few proposals that had received funder feedback, one of the main reasons being inadequate funds to meet the budget. Preselected and preferred partners within the bidding group were informally also known to be a challenge. Based on that evidence, the firm decided to be strategic in selecting which bids to respond to. We hence analysed our niche and further categorised clients to establish those that were more likely to be objective and have adequate funds for evaluations.
Efforts yielded success!
A dramatic increase in terms of contracts awarded was registered in 2018, whereby 9 contracts were awarded yet only 18 (50%) proposals had been written; a drastic increased from 18%. The total amount in awards was $290,200. This also reduced stress on staff since it was consuming less time. Resources associated with bid applications that included printing, binding and proposals were also reduced.
In a nutshell….
Even evaluation firms and other types of evidence producers can benefit from evidence gathered from self-reflection, niche analysis, facilitators and barriers assessment, and contextual analysis to make strategic decisions relevant to organisational performance, efficiency and effectiveness.
Dr. Julian K, Bagyendera is a Project Management, M&E and Gender Specialist. She is the Executive Director of Provide and Equip (P&E) Ltd, an M&E/Management Consultancy Firm headquartered in Uganda and. CEO of Molian Investments that deals in honey processing, and marketing, crop and animal farming and tree growing