It has been said that “in every problem, there is always a solution.” Usually, when writing proposals, the writer must see to it that he or she understands the main problem, concern, or issue; otherwise, the solutions would also be vague. You may also see short proposal examples.
In making a simple proposal—research, project, business, grant, etc.—you must make sure that you have clearly laid down what you think is the solution or the thing that you can offer or the answer that would address the issue.
Oftentimes, in a business proposal, an individual or entity would highlight the advantages that he or she or they can offer to the client as well as the reason why should the client chooses them. On the other hand, in research proposals, the writer must identify the issue and must present the practical ways on how to solve them or ask for funds from a specified sponsor.
Want to learn more about proposals? Check out the different examples of minimal proposal presented in the next section.
A proposal is written requesting a fund or support from a sponsored research and other creative activities such as in research proposal according to the instruction of a funding sponsor. In the case of business and project proposal, it is written to inform the client that the entity can address to the problem or issue of the client and the reason why the client must choose that certain entity over its competitors.
In formal proposals, there are several types that you must know, and these are as follows:
In this type of formal proposal, the papers are submitted to a certain sponsor that may have not issued a specific solicitation but is believed to be interested in the project. This is developed around general agency guidelines where the scope of the project is not limited by specific solicitation guidelines. There might be target submission dates set to meet particular review panel meetings, but generally, unsolicited proposal can be submitted anytime.
This type of proposal includes Broad Agency Announcements (BAA), Requests for Proposal (RFP), and Requests for Quotation (RFQ). The proposal is submitted in response to a specific program and should conform to the solicitation guidelines issued by the agency. They usually have a hard deadline, where late proposals are no longer accepted. Commonly, they are one-time solicitations to fit a specific need that is not expected to recur.
This type of professional proposal is a form of a request for financial assistance for a subsequent budget period within a previously approved project period. It confirms the original proposal and funding requirements of the multi-year project where continued support is usually contingent on satisfactory work progress and the availability of funds.
From the sponsor’s point of view, this is similar to unsolicited proposal. These are requests for continued support for an existing project that is about to terminate. Competing continuation proposals compete for funds with other competing continuation, competing supplemental, and new proposals. You may also see service proposal examples.
This is a form of request for an increase in support during a current budget period. The additional support will be used for expansion of the project’s scope or research protocol or to meet increased administrative costs that are not yet taken into account at the beginning of the project. You may also like investment proposal examples.
A proposal must have these important elements presented in its content for the client to be informed regarding the client and the specific details of the proposal. They are as follows:
In your simple proposal, the information of your company must be specified. You must clearly present the qualifications of your company, what you can offer, your specializations, and the reason why must the potential client choose you over your competitors.
You must also have a clear understanding and a strong knowledge on the issue. You must appear to have done your research and that you understand and perfectly know what the client needs. This will prompt the client that they can rely on you because you know their needs. You may also see security proposal examples.
You must also present what your ways are and what you are planning to do to solve the client’s project. As much as possible, highlight what your company is offering in order to address the problem. Additionally, do not forget to include the close of your proposal. You may also like budget proposal examples.
Writing a business proposal can sometimes be challenging especially when you are still new in writing proposals. However, as you write and write general business proposals, you can simply create them because you already know the format and structure of the proposal. You already know the flow of the content as well as the important details which is necessary to be included in the proposal.
To help you write an effective business proposal, here is the typical structure of a business proposal that is proven comprehensive and is not complicated, easily understandable by the readers.
The first part that must appear in your proposal is the title page. In this section, it must include your basic information such as your company name, contact information, and modern logo and the basic information of the potential client such as the client’s name and contact information. You must also include the date and the title of the proposal. This will make your proposal presentable, formal, and organized.
In this section of your general proposal, this serves as an introduction to your overall proposal. Before presenting the specifics, present and introduce yourself through this section. You must include a one-liner about your company, brief background information or history of your company, and a short overview of what makes your company better than the competitors. Encourage your reader to reach out with any questions, and close it with a thank-you and a signature.
You can include table of contents in your sample proposal unless your proposal is very brief. The table of contents must be in outline form as this will help the readers know what they can expect to find in the document. You might want to send it automatically and create a clickable table of contents, linking the topic to its content, so that it would be easier for the reader to revisit the different sections of your proposal without having to navigate through multiple pages.
This sets the scene for the proposal. It must present the reason why you are sending such papers and why must the client read them. You can also mention the offers of your company that would address the client’s problem to make it more relevant. You may also see maintenance proposal examples.
In this section, you must outline the solution that you are suggesting to the potential client that you believe is the solution to their problem. You can describe the anticipated outcome of the project as well as the general time frame for the whole project. Also mention that you can address the potential client’s issues and problems and let them know you are the one for the job. You may also like fundraising proposal examples.
This section presents the general overview of the custom-made solution that your entity has come up with for the potential client. You can go into specifics in this section. You must anticipate that they might have questions, and make sure to take them through the process so that they know what they are signing on for when they choose you to work with them. You may also check out partnership proposal examples.
In this section, you can show off what makes your company the best among the rest of the competitors. Inform your client about your organization by including bios and photos of the people they would be working with if they accept your proposal, and make them feel that they are getting to know more about your entity. You can also include your past successes, awards, as well as client testimonials. You might be interested in conference proposal examples.
In this section, you must present a pricing that clearly identifies each product or service. Make sure that the pricing that you are presenting is the most accurate pricing information you can provide. Avoid overestimation for the client might be scared and will turn down your proposal; also avoid underestimation for the client might think that you have hidden charges and they are not going to work with you again. You may also see non-profit proposal examples.
This section will specify the duration of the general agreement, present again the overall timetable of the project, specify payment dates as well as modes of payment, when and how the proposal can be amended, among others. This is sort of an overview of what you and your potential client are promising by agreeing to your proposal.
Include a space for the signature of the client in this section with the general statement “by signing below you agree to” above it. You may also include a friendly prompt or the call to action, a phrase that would tell the readers or the potential customer to contact you as soon as possible such as “feel free to contact us” or “we look forward to working with you.”
Not yet confident to start writing your own proposal? Check out the tips below to create better proposals.
Incorporate visuals in your proposal such as the photos of your work, infographics, block quotes, and bulleted lists.
You may also include quantitative information of figures in your proposal as this is more enticing to the readers such as “We have helped more than 1000 growing companies increase their sales by 20% to date.” You may also see proposal memo examples.
It is better that you send your proposals through professional emails because you can include videos about your offers, you can easily annotate and edit them, and you can give your potential clients the ability to sign them electronically.
You must always include the branding of your company in your materials, and your proposal is not an exemption. Hence, make sure to incorporate your branding in your proposal.
Lastly, do not forget to check and double-check your proposal. Make sure that there are no spelling mistakes and typographical errors as this can affect the credibility of your company. Remember that you wanted to be chosen by your client; hence, make sure that you present yourself well. You may also check out engineering project proposal examples.
A proposal is needed by a certain entity to show to the client the entity’s approach, solutions, or what the entity can offer to address the problem of the client. It has different types, namely unsolicited proposal, solicited proposal, continuation or non-competing proposals, renewal or competing proposals, and supplemental proposal. You may also like policy proposal examples.
It has three main necessary elements which are as follows: company information, demonstrated knowledge of the issue, and pricing and methodology. It is composed of the following structure: title page, cover letter, table of contents, executive summary, proposal, methodology or services, about us, pricing, terms and conditions, and formal agreement and call to action.
In creating a proposal, you must not forget the following tips: incorporate visuals; include quantitative data; go digital; incorporate your brand; and lastly, check, recheck, and proofread.
Finally, you can refer to the above examples of minimal proposal for some comprehensive and detailed examples.