Q:

How do you write a business proposal?

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Quick Answer

Effective business proposals clearly outline one or more possible solutions to the client's problems. Business proposals typically contain three to five sections. The first two sections address specific problems or issues mentioned in the client's Request for Proposal. The last two or three sections provide specific solutions along with a summary of the contractor's experience and credentials.

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Full Answer

Carefully reading the Request for Proposal or interviewing the client directly allows the contractor to determine the exact issues and problems that the client faces. Without fully understanding these issues, the contractor may have difficulty providing the most effective solutions. Breaking up a proposal into easy-to-read sections helps the contractor outline potential solutions, possible setbacks and ways to overcome these setbacks. In addition, the contractor should provide a summary of experience, management style, additional information needed to complete the project, and other information that demonstrates expertise and ability to satisfy the client's requests.

To stand out from the competition, the contractor needs to create a cohesive, logical proposal that also includes a hint of the contractor's personality. Although considered a technical document, a business proposal should be interesting and easy to read. A proposal that provides extensive information in a professional, yet compelling, way stands out from the competition's proposals and increases the contractor's chances of winning the proposal bid.

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