The Strategic Pursuit team has three core areas of discipline which each Solution director focuses on, these include:
Strategy - Creates and Define the Strategic Direction of the Pursuit and Bid Management functions, with regards to the organisations technical capability, service offerings and the direction of customer engagements. Including looking at RFI/RFP requirements and ensuring that the team and Rackspace are striving to have the capabilities to meet the market’s needs.
Advisory - Provide a Trusted Advisor capability to our Bid and wider Rackspace business units to ensure that capabilities, services and products are understood and pulled together in offers which meet the markets requirements
Growth – Provide a capability which focuses on our customer base ensuring that we ensure that our providing for existing customers and growing the products and capabilities, they use and ensuring they are aware of any new offers or developments.
Role To increase the companies’ capability and shape the customer engagements through:
• Provide Trusted Advisor/Thought Leadership to customers with regards to the Technical, Service and Transformation Approach
• Own the creation of the Customer Vision and providing an understanding of how things will be different and how they will improve
• Ensure the Customer understands the Target Operating Model, how it will work and how it will interact with their business
• Ensure the Customer understands the Transition & Transformation Plan, how we will get there and what is involved along the way
• Provide a high-level Service/Solution Overview to the customer as part of Proposal documentation and customer dialogue
• Manage the process of inputting into/creating the Business Case and ROI
Role To increase the companies’ pursuit success rate through:
• Provision of strategic advice, coaching and constructive challenge to partners and senior staff on individual strategic pursuits.
• Promotion of Rackspace’s Pursuit Process and core methodologies and coaching to all levels of staff on pursuit best practice and winning behaviors.
• Working with the leadership to ensure correct level of focus/support is provided to strategic pursuits and escalating any issues that will impact success.
• Ensuring strategic pursuits are managed and delivered effectively, efficiently and adhere to Rackspace’s policies (risk, pricing, brand).
• Training and mentoring of “virtual team members” thereby increasing the skills and capability within GSS.
• Development and continuous improvement of pursuit best practice and knowledge sharing with other pursuit advisors throughout the global pursuit community.
Strategic Pursuit activities
• Provide advice, direction and coaching to the pursuit lead partner and team across the entire pursuit process i.e. from Qualification to Win/Loss debrief.
• Ensure all pursuit team members have a clear understanding of their roles and the input required and challenge any capacity/commitment issues.
• Ensure all strategic milestones/review points are completed effectively and appropriate leadership/stakeholders are notified and involved.
• Coach and direct the Pursuit Project management function throughout the process to ensure they are leveraging best practices and managing an efficient and effective pursuit.
• Bring the client perspective and ensure strategy will engage the client and our proposition is compelling not just compliant (including formal compliance check/shadow marking versus RFP).
• Challenge decision to pursue, team selection and team chemistry.
• Contribute to and direct the development of the overall pursuit strategy, incorporating client contact plan and creative approach.
• Input into and challenge of the value proposition: specifically ensuring client proposition and the key messages are clear and incorporated into all collateral and contact plan.
• Help develop the approach to site visits/client meetings and ensure that insights are captured, and strategy revised as appropriate.
• Facilitate and input into the storyboard and the development of content for all collateral and review of all materials: are the value proposition, benefits and Rackspace differentiators clear.
• Advise on the use of third partner external support in the form of writers, coaches, and design as required.
• Facilitate and input into pitch preparation sessions and advise on the use of appropriate visual aids.
• Attend (or chair) presentation dry runs and provide coaching of pursuit team (and individual members) for impact and authenticity.
• Work with Lead Partner and team on post pitch activities and client contact plan to maintain momentum.
• Arrange win/loss debriefs, advising on appropriate independent interviewer, and ensure learning points captured and actioned.
• Advise Pursuit Team and other parties (e.g. Competitive intelligence) of any lessons learned or insights gathered.
• Provide ad hoc support to pursuits which the EMEA Pursuit team are not involved with end to end.
• Continuity of Proposal and Customer Engagement
• Consistency of Proposals and Customer Engagement
• Ensuring the Score & balance of Proposal and Bid Responses
• Ensuring where possible our Proposals and Bid Responses are clearly unique & differentiated
• Facilitation and Leadership throughout the client engagement process
• Best Practice Development and Leadership
• Lead or contribute to projects that will increase pursuit best practice and knowledge, create deliverables and share with GSS community.
• Provide awareness and as required.
• Encourage teams to use the Pursuit Process and Sales methodology.
• Ability to work under pressure with challenging deadlines, multiple stakeholders and opinions.
• A deep understanding of the sales/pursuit cycle and the ability to leverage relevant prior learning experience - including the development of RFIs, RFPs and weighted evaluation criteria.
• Emotional intelligence and the ability to adapt personal style and approach to successfully influence and motivate team stakeholders.
• Credibility and ability to coach, challenge and influence the most senior stakeholders within Rackspace.
• Ability to chair and facilitate strategy and innovation sessions to achieve successful outputs.
Evidence of commercial and common-sense approach to problem solving and an ability to ‘think on one’s feet’.
• Excellent oral and written communication skills, with ability to present complex and challenging messages skilfully. Also, the ability to simplify complex content/ideas into clear, persuasive language.
• Strong organisational and project management skills.
• Strong team-player, with the ability to motivate others (not under direct control) and engender high performing behaviors and results.
• Effective challenging and negotiation.
• Impactful, resourceful, persistent and determined.