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“Before, we were spending huge amounts of money on travel to get people together in a single room. With Privia, we’ve moved that kind of work online, saving money on virtually every proposal we create.”
— Sarah McLain, Proposal Coordinator, SRC
With operations spanning six continents, Scientific Research Corporation (SRC) brings new meaning to the expression “globally distributed organization.” As it pursues opportunities in commercial and defense markets around the world, the engineering services provider has to bring widely dispersed contributors together into a unified proposal development environment —something that has not always been easy. “We’ve been successful throughout our history, but not without a lot of stress and anxiety among our proposal staff and leadership,” says SRC Proposal Coordinator Sarah McLain.
In the past, SRC did not have a seamless proposal development process. Inconsistent file structures and the lack of a central repository for intellectual property made essential information difficult to find. Shared servers and hard drives were inaccessible by remote personnel, and lacked the security to prevent access and changes by unauthorized users. SRC found it difficult to coordinate proposal contributors, control security, and keep travel and marketing costs associated with in-person proposal reviews down.
Seamless Collaboration Worldwide
After evaluating several options for improving the efficiency of its proposal development processes, SRC chose Privia as their business capture and proposal management solution. Says McLain, “We found that Privia offers the best, most secure collaborative environment, making it possible for people from Djibouti or Ireland to participate seamlessly in document creation and review. Equally important, the solution didn’t lock us into a single industry category. Because we operate in commercial as well as government markets, it’s essential for us to have a solution that supports both sectors well, and that is what Privia does.”
Before Privia, SRC developed and stored proposals on shared hard drives. Now they are able to use a collaborative online workspace where RFPs, background materials, and works-in-progress are managed consistently. Proposal team members and reviewers can log in at any time, from any location; instant notifications alert participants when a document is ready for their input, and presence detection and chat features speed communication and coordination. “I can set someone up to make comments on a document, but not edit it directly,” explains McLain. “That way, I can leverage their expertise while retaining control over the specific language used in the proposal."
Privia also enables SRC to maintain an accurate and comprehensive central repository of information and documents. Team members can instantly access corporate marketing materials, industry intelligence, and corporate experience narratives, and empl
oyee resumes can be browsed in order to quickly identify the appropriate personnel for each opportunity. SRC also utilizes Privia’s flexibility to allow separate divisions to follow their own practices for business development and opportunity tracking.
Better Efficiencies, Reduced Costs and Improved Quality of Life
Privia made an immediate impact on SRC productivity and efficiency. To date, Privia has already helped teams ranging from 5–50 members develop several major proposals with a value totaling more than one billion dollars. In addition to improving collabor
ation and streamlining the proposal development process, Privia has helped SRC reduce costs, saving them hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. “Before, we were spending huge amounts of money on travel to get people together in a single room,” says McLain. “For one proposal, we spent $5,000 to send four people to a color review in Charleston, South Carolina. With Privia, we’ve moved that kind of work online, saving money on virtually every proposal we create.”
Importantly, Privia also has made a significant impact on the quality of life of SRC’s employees. Says McLain, “People really appreciate not having to come in over the weekend or deal with unnecessary frustration. They’re a lot happier and more productive, and that’s been a great benefit for our business.”