Proposals Manager

PQE: Not applicable
Term: Permanent
Working hours: Full-time
Department: Business Development
Location: Edinburgh / Glasgow
The team

Shepherd and Wedderburn are currently recruiting for a Proposals Manager to join their MBD team based in Edinburgh or Glasgow. The Proposals Manager will be responsible for the overall performance, skills development and leadership of the Proposals Assistant(s)/ Executive(s), working jointly to deliver proposal submissions that position the Firm with the best opportunity for success in its work winning efforts across the public, private and third sectors.

The Proposals Manager will:

  • manage and lead internal clients through the bid response process to horizon scan, qualify (Go/ No Go), plan, develop and submit compliant, high quality proposals within client defined timeframes,
  • manage the allocation of work within the Proposals Team and coach and appraise the Proposals Assistant(s)/ Executive(s),
  • coordinate input from internal clients and support functions across the firm, and
  • work with the Head of Proposals to implement improvements to existing processes and procedures that streamline service delivery to internal clients.

The MBD team is integral to the strategic direction and successful implementation of the firm’s growth plans. You will have the support and opportunity to progress your career and explore key areas of professional development and interest to you. For the right candidate, there is real opportunity for career progression.

The role

Core responsibilities of the role will include:

  • maintaining the proposals pipeline up to a year in advance and horizon scanning opportunities,
  • support the opportunity qualification process by researching clients and operating sectors to understand key priorities and win themes, documenting the key considerations/ rationale for decisions, and communicating the outputs of the qualification discussion,
  • developing and maintaining the proposal response plan,
  • scheduling and running proposal kick-off meetings,
  • leading the response planning session with subject matter experts/ content contributors to agree win themes and bespoke client solutions,
  • developing persuasive first draft answers/ responses using information from the proposals library (where available) and issuing for review by legal teams/ Head of Proposals,
  • coordinating, reviewing/ editing input from content contributors across the firm,
  • facilitating key review meetings/ final document review to include peer and quality reviews,
  • co-ordinating sign-off (commercial and quality proposals), submission, content capture and post-submission activities,
  • coaching legal teams invited to interview/ present following proposal submission,
  • debriefing with clients and internal response teams to learn lessons and implement improvements, and
  • managing and reviewing the firm’s library of proposal collateral to maintain its accuracy, taking corrective action where appropriate, including developing content where gaps exist and capturing content from proposals submitted.

A highly networked role, the Proposals Manager will:

  • work closely with the Head of Proposals/ appropriate partners to support work winning efforts to achieve the firm’s strategic, sector-specific and client-specific plans,
  • collaborate and work closely with members of the wider MBD team to deliver specific initiatives time efficiently and cost effectively,
  • engage regularly with internal clients and support functions across the firm to maintain their ongoing support of the Proposals Team and the firm’s work winning efforts, and
  • mentor, train and contribute to the development of lawyers’ work winning skills, including coaching on persuasive writing and proposal best practice.
Other information

We are interested in hearing from candidates with:

  • minimum 5 years’ experience in a dedicated proposal/ bids role within the professional services or construction sector or a lawyer with 5 years PQE,
  • strong academic background with a degree level education in English, marketing or business equivalent subjects,
  • track record of influencing and developing relationships at a senior level,
  • experience of leading and encouraging work winning teams,
  • strong written English language and excellent oral communication skills,
  • project and time management expertise, together with experience of working under pressure and managing competing priorities,
  • excellent attention to detail and an aptitude for presenting complex information,
  • advanced MS Word/ PowerPoint skills and proficiency in MS Office, and
  • experience of proposal automation software.