Proposal WriterJob Description, Salary, Career Path, and Trends
Proposal writers draft documents aimed at persuading the reader or recipient to either support a particular project or enter into a business agreement.
Proposal writers specialize primarily in grant and business proposals. Grant proposals convince readers to invest, lend, or donate to a project. Business proposals persuade recipients to buy a product or service or to enter into a business relationship. However, a wide variety of industries can — and do — rely on proposal writers’ services, including health care, film, finance, and sports.
A proposal writer must write factually and research thoroughly to convey accurate financial information persuasively. They need great organization and presentation skills to “sell” their ideas face-to-face.
Sample job description #1
The proposal writer is responsible for developing winning proposals through strategic messaging, ensuring we’re articulating the best story and value to clients in compelling and differentiated ways, developing innovative deliverables to visually tell that story, and strong project management.
Are you a match?
You are endlessly curious – Don’t know something? You Google it. Meet someone in a completely foreign profession? You ask questions until you know every aspect of what it’s like. Your ultimate research topic? Developing skills to live to your fullest potential
You are extremely resourceful – You believe answers are just lying in wait and so you look under every proverbial rock
You adore crafting a great story and you speak human – You see how facts and figures can come together to be compelling and persuasive. You strongly dislike the word “utilize” and love it when you get to write in a more conversational style
You think two minds are better than one – while you take pride and ownership of your work, you love it when collaborating improves the end result
You catch the details – You aren’t one of those people who sees one question in an email, but misses the other two. You check your list. In fact, you check it twice
You are “all over it” – You self-start. Even if you can’t do something right away, you’ll email the person to let them know you’ll be on it very soon. You know how to lead the horse to water and you kill it with stellar communication and a well-thought out plan
Word is your friend – You know all the ins and outs and lovingly work around every glitch
You are an adrenaline junkie – Pressure? That only makes you focus better
Essential duties and responsibilities
Proposal strategy and writing – With limited supervision or guidance, help pursuit teams identify winning strategies by understanding the buyer’s needs, challenging the status quo, and creating proposals that are customized and tailored to the decision maker
Proposal management – Own project management by creating timelines/responsibility assignments and driving continuous communication. Identify and remove barriers of progress, escalating issues as needed to theStudio Leader
Collaboration – Help facilitate a high level of collaboration between multiple stakeholders. When needed, work directly with theStudio’s content leader and national industry marketing leaders to help refine content strategy/messaging to best position the firm to win
Innovation and Creativity – Develop innovative and creative proposal presentations (digital presentations/videos/interactive PPs and PDFs) to increase our likelihood of winning proposals
Communication – Participate and play an active role in regular meetings to share best practices, information, problem solving, etc., with other team members. The proposal writer is expected to be a generator of best-in-class proposals and best practices that can serve as a model for other members of the team
Tracking – Comply and use CRM database to track all proposal information required to develop weekly, monthly, and quarterly reports. Ensure data is accurate and updated real-time
Training and sharing best practices. Serve as a training resource and brand ambassador sharing approaches and learnings from pursuits. Actively share best practices
Other duties as assigned
Sample job description #2
We are looking for a creative, outgoing, out-of-the-box thinker to join our marketing team! The Proposal Writer will partner with internal and external Executives, Project Managers, and Business Development Leads to prepare compliant winning RFQ /RFP responses as well as activities that support our growth initiatives.
Coordinate, write, edit, and produce responses to Solicitations, SOQs, RFQs, RFPs, ITBs; this includes research, technical content, graphics, page layout, and design
Ability to work with multiple department leads to assemble materials and manage the entire proposal process from start to delivery
Read and analyze Solicitations, SOQs, RFQs, RFPs, ITBs, and edit proposal content for spelling, grammar, consistency, and compliance with requirement
Prepare PowerPoint presentations, leave-behinds, and handouts for interviews with prospective clients
Assist with tracking and inputting opportunities into Cosential and weekly meetings
Schedule and participate in strategy meetings
Attend pre-proposal meetings and debriefings as needed
Assist with other business development/marketing functions, as necessary
Update & maintain the marketing department’s documentation and databases (i.e. resumes, project portfolios, photos, references, licenses and certifications, project history, etc.)
Communication skills required
Must have excellent project and time management skills with keen attention to detail while being highly organized. Excellent writing and proof-reading skills. Ability to multitask and handle multiple deadlines and assignments.
2+ years of experience providing proposal and presentation coordination and marketing support in the A/E/C industry.
Sample job description #3
We are currently seeking a Proposal Writer to join our highly motivated and experienced Federal Proposal team.
Work you’ll do
Support bid opportunities for new business pursuits
Write executive summaries and pursuit materials that articulate our strategic messaging in a compelling and persuasive manner
Capture, shape, and synthesize information to reflect a cohesive message, written in one voice
Translate technical information and business jargon into clear, consistent, and grammatically correct content
Demonstrate a finely-tuned ability to sift through a discussion, extracting the most significant information and action items
Collaborate with graphic designers, project managers, pursuit coaches, and client service teams to build creative and innovative material
As part of company’s growth efforts, candidate from time to time participates in coding and design challenges to build working prototypes
Undergraduate degree in English, journalism, communications, humanities, computer science, or related disciplines
2+ years of prior relevant experience
Exceptional written and oral communication skills
A quasi-journalistic ability to quickly grasp specialist knowledge and make it clear for external parties
Strong executive presence
Agility and speed in executing strong writing
Intellectual curiosity and ability to “get smart quick” on a wide variety of topics
Ability to prioritize and multitask within a fast-paced, challenging, and deadline-driven environment
Average salary and compensation
The average salary for a proposal writer is $77,750 in the United States. Position salary will vary based on experience, education, company size, industry, and market.
Los Angeles, California
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota
New York City, New York
Sample interview questions
Tell me about the types of documents you have prepared in the past.
What are your methods for ensuring your writing is clear and consistent?
How would you rate your writing skills?
How do you organize, plan, and prioritize your work?
When gathering information from multiple sources, how do you decide what information is relevant?
Describe a time when a presentation did not go as planned. What did you do?
What is your process for proofreading and revisions?
Tell me about a time when you successfully shared a difficult piece of information.
How would you handle juggling many different documents with different deadlines?
What process would you use to interview a subject matter expert?
Give me an example of a time when you worked within a group environment to complete a document and how you handled it.
What would you do if someone within a group was late with or didn’t complete their deliverables?
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