For the past years IDX.Marketing has been helping business and entrepreneurs with their capability statements.
As a Wyndham Protege we spent one whole year developing and perfecting the strategies to create a capability statement that is unique to your company and branding and also resonates with the big fortune companies that are so used to read them.
Your capability statement needs to be your “one minute elevator speech on paper”.
This below, is our take on what was discussed in the meeting and some advises we have come across ourselves.
As every fortune company is different and their procurement department is managed by many talented leaders they agree on the following terms below:
What a Capability Statement should have:
- A good appealing and branded design will always help to deliver your overall message and can be a visual representation that support what you do, your company culture and your values.
- They want to understand in simple words your business description. Basically, what problems do you solve for them. You should be concise and direct when you create your business description.
- Past experience. They want to know how long you have been on business, and exactly is your focus. (Main services or Products)
- Some, would even like to see your sales revenue. They want to make sure you can handle the business they are about to throw your way. Another way to demonstrate your capabilities is to mention your team, whether you have employees or work with subcontractors and advisors. The most important thing here is that you show that you can handle the business and that it is thanks to your expertise that they can feel safe that the job will get done.
Remember to keep it simple:
The fewer words the better. These talented managers at the fortune companies are busy people. They are use to receive many capability statements and presentations on a monthly basis on top of all the other responsibilities they have. They are looking for solutions and the easer you can convey your services or products to them, the more likely they would pick you for the job.
Do’s and Don’ts:
- DO represent your brand. You and your team members must represent your branding. The way you groom and dress must be a good representation of your business. If your designs do not match your personal care, it creates a dissociation of who you are and your company, thus, bringing distrust or racing a red flag for potential buyers.
- Do NOT mess up. There may be some set backs in some projects but if you are constantly not able to deliver what you promised you are in exponential trouble. They all communicate among themselves. They know each other very well across all companies and if you do not deliver what you promise, they will all know.
- Do NOT embellish. Do not put more than what you can really do well. It will look bad when they can figure out that some of what you said is not your strong point.
- DO keep your “NAICS” codes and all other codes limited to your niche. This is an extension of the point above. Leave out the codes that are not exactly what your services and capabilities reflect.
- DO add the companies that you have worked with in the past or present.
- DO add any AWARDS your company has received, add any licenses, quality measures etc… Make sure you add those things that you have earned over the years.
- Do NOT over promise. Make sure you can do the specific job you are seeking for. There are many factors that you simply do not know about the project. The fortune companies have an incredible amount of moving parts and they constantly change. Make sure you do your DUE DILIGENCE and get all posible challenges before applying for the job.
- DO showcase the the key area of your expertise.
- DO your homework. Tailor your capability statement to the specific areas you want to work on. FURTHER, you can have more than one capability statement, you can create one capability statement per service or product depending on the requirement of the job.
- DO Follow up. Turning in your capability statement does not guarantee that your company will be memorable or that you are in their system. You have to go and make sure you are a registered vendor on the client’s portal, make sure you follow up with emails to the people you have turned your capability statements. REMEMBER, people do businesses with people they know and trust.
Final words of advise:
- Look your brand. Make sure that your designs, website, team members and yourself are a representation of your brand and most importantly for your client, make sure your company can be perceived as an extension of their branding as well.
- One Page Capability Statement. Make sure you share the information you must in the minimal quantity of words possible.
- Research the company before you approach them. Know exactly what is their pain point in your area of expertise and make sure you know how to fix or improve it.
- Follow up. You can follow up with an email and share some more information such as yearly revenue, case studies, Clients testimonials etc…
- Consider adding “Case Studies”. Remember people remember stories. If you have a good one that can be shared in few words, add it.
- Add some testimonials from your most appropriate clients.
On the link below is a questionnaire they shared at the meeting that covers most of the information you will need to make your capability statement.
Please click HERE for the questionnaire.