Re: Telecom proposals

Subject: Re: Telecom proposals
From: Ginna Watts <gwatts -at- PIM -dot- BC -dot- CA>
Date: Fri, 13 Feb 1998 10:46:10 -0800

Geoff Hart wrote:

>The basic principle is simple: the template contains the briefest
>possible reminder of what specific points the author must cover, with
>hints or tips to make the job of writing easier. In addition, it
>contains any boilerplate (e.g., the headings themselves plus standard
>text such as the disclaimers) so the authors won't have to retype it.
>The philosophy behind this approach is twofold: to get writers past
>that initial bump (to some of them, the scariest thing in the world
>is facing a blank screen and not having any idea where to begin
>writing) and to make sure they don't forget any of the important

I have done this as well for our proposals, but usually the RPFs vary so
much in the level of information required that the template isn't much help.

What does help, is the other process I set up. In the same place as the
proposal templates, I've created a warehouse of basic information that
almost every proposal needs in some shape or form. For example, every RPF
wants information about the people who will do the work. Some specify formal
resumes, some clearly only want brief descriptions of qualifications. I've
set up a series of documents which outline the qualifications of every staff
member, in a number of formats.

I've also collected as much "process information" as I can, and put it in
the same directory. We bid on mapping jobs, and they often have overlapping
processes. So I've got work estimates - If the job includes a NAD conversion
element, the writer can look and see how long and how many people it usually
takes to convert 10 mapsheets, and what exactly is involved. Every month I
add more, based on information people ask me for. Eventually I hope to put
it all in some sort of database, but for now a series of documents is
working fine. Our proposal writers find this much more useful than the

Ginna Watts - Technical Writer
Pacific International Mapping
Victoria, BC
(250) 727-0727
gwatts -at- pim -dot- bc -dot- ca

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