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Determining Whether to Invest in Responding to a New Business Development Opportunity

By Ann Martin | Harkcon's Vice President and Business Development Specialist

Determining whether or not to bid on a new opportunity is fairly complex. Most organizations require business development professionals to develop and document a Probability of Win (PWin) for each new opportunity being considered. As with all corporate activities – there is a budget line item for developing proposals and determining how to invest those dollars where they will result in the best return is important. One tool that can be used to help make the decision on spending money responding to a new opportunity is to calculate the PWin. There are many ways and elements that can be involved in calculating PWin. If you google PWin you will find a number of resources and opinions on how to calculate and the value of calculating PWin. However, from my experience calculating PWin is a valuable tool as long as it doesn’t get too complicated. The maximum value assigned to each item should be driven by the customer and opportunity idiosyncrasies.

Here’s a simple PWin sample calculation:

It’s important to note that calculating PWin begins at the start of the capture phase of business development, the PWin should change over time – as you become more familiar with the new opportunity and the customer. If you would like to contact the author of this blog, send an email to and reference the title, "Determining Whether to Invest in Responding to a New Business Development Opportunity."

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