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Manufacturing Research Consultants, and the Ambiguous Bidding Process

Communication for Research frequently receives requests from manufacturing research consultants at agencies that are trying to win business. To do so, they require a quote for research work to fold into their proposal, but unfortunately, they typically lack a lot of information. They tell us everything they can about the project, but because the deal is not yet solidified, the more granular details (the important ones) are yet to be determined. This ambiguity puts pressure on everyone involved: the consultant needs a quote to move forward, and we at CFR are being asked to provide a proposal for research that we know very little about.

manufacturing research, CFR

 

Project timelines can shift

For example, a manufacturing research consultant reached out to us in February, seeking to win the business of a large manufacturer. At the time this consultant engaged us, they only knew they were going to have to speak to one group of people for research—but they did not know specifics and they certainly did not know when the project would occur. The consultant won the research business from the manufacturer in May and research officially launched in June.

Given the time it took to secure the deal and the lack of details, it is quite typical for a manufacturing research project timeline to change, and prices right along with it. These shifts can have a landslide effect on the entire project, impacting expectations and relationships with key stakeholders. However, in this particular example, CFR came in on budget—the same exact budget we proposed to the consultant back in February—and we still managed to come in on time.

A conservative proposal process

This happened by design. CFR knows how these things tend to unfold and we are familiar with the ambiguous bidding process consultants and agencies have to endure to win business for manufacturing research. We aim to be extremely conservative in our quotes to combat this. We know things can shift, so we simply plan for that. We always allow for more time, more padding and more details to unfold.

The end result is that the consultant, too, comes in on time and at or under budget. This is critical as they seek to create long-lasting relationships with their clients. Coming in on time means there are zero project delays tied to research and that research is delivering what it should be: insights and valuable data that will help the end client move forward in the best light possible.

CFR approaches clients in the most realistic, conservative way possible. Manufacturing research consultants come to us because of this realistic approach, even as a project evolves and the scope is refined. If you have a research project you’d like to discuss, we would welcome an opportunity to hear more and provide you with a proposal on how we can partner together. Feel free to contact us here.

 

 

 

Topics: market research consultants

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