Bidding war

More big projects on the horizon!
I definitely find driving into work to begin the week much easier when I have a significant project in motion. Recently I've been managing two high profile digital initiatives. These are Kier's disposal of Mouchel Consulting and the publication of our 2016 annual report.

The former has been quite straightforward for me as our marketing teams have had a good working relationship to this point. So, I've been engaged in delivering CMS training, asset library and login transfers and generally ensuring a smooth handover.

Our annual report is a key document for engaging with shareholders and of similar importance. It communicates not only the work we have done but outlines the vision for the coming year. Last year I championed the build of a page on our website which pulled out the key highlights of this report. Before, digital had been an afterthought with the annual report being published online just as a large PDF. Of course, the drawbacks of this were that it was not searchable and it meant anyone engaging with our content would need to download a 10MB+ file.

I'm pleased to say that this year we've gone a step further with a much more integrated and user friendly page. There was some work to do on cherry-picking the correct content, but already the combination of financial results and case studies has seen twice as many unique visitors as last year. This is a case in point of the importance of adapting content depending on the medium. You wouldn't expect a film adaption of a novel to simply project the scanned pages onto the big screen...!

Trying to find a role for digital in everything is essential in proving the ROI of what the team do. With this in mind I've been investigated how we bid for new work and the opportunities for us to add value. Winning new contracts and projects is at the top of the list when it comes to turning an operational profit. We're favoured to be well regarded enough to be approached to bid for work but must then do everything we can in order to win it. Here is how I think digital can help with this process:

Externally seeding content:

Whether this be via social media, our blog or video production we can do a lot to highlight our experience and expertise. For example, if we are bidding for work in a specific geographical area we target relevant content in the form of client testimonials. Planning this in advance means that the potential client is well aware of our reliability and skills both before and after the final pitch.

Selling expertise to clients:

With a professional and well qualified in house digital team we are in many ways more advanced than most of our competitors. In fact, we've just been shortlisted for 'Marketing Team of the Year' at the Construction Marketing Awards to further highlight our credentials. These skills can be leveraged to show where we can add value to a project were it to be awarded to us. This may be in assisting in the build of a microsite, brand strategy or social media communication and training.

Cross selling and the integrated offer:

Finally, we have been leading on a project to educate colleagues before they enter into a bid. In many cases Kier are already working on a contract either with a council or organisation. By building a bespoke app highlighting where current work is taking place it fuels the conversation and cements the impression of a joined-up company ethos. This app also has up to date contact information allowing colleagues to get in touch with each other to ensure full transparency pre-pitch. The client can then be educated on the full benefits of having an integrated workforce who communicate in the same way.

Championing digital as a set of technologies which can both improve and evolve how we do business is essential in to continue to adapt our operational models. People's behaviour is still evolving in the way they interact with technology and we need to ensure we are looking to do all we can to add value and open up new markets.
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