If you provide consulting or other services and don't have a capability statement, you're probably losing business. What's a Capability Statement?As the name suggests, it tells potential clients what ...
If you provide consulting or other services and don't have a capability statement, you're probably losing business.
What's a Capability Statement?
As the name suggests, it tells potential clients what you, or your organisation and staff are capable of. It highlights what your future capability is and reflects on your past successes.
Capability statements are usually produced as brochures or booklets and are now increasingly appearing in online formats eg, HTML, PDF and self-executable ebooks. Include your logo, corporate colours and graphics so that your market recognises your corporate identity.
Some of the better printed brochures are graphics intense, professionally laid out and attractively produced on hiqh quality papers. The simplest form can be produced in black and white or colour on a cheap laser or inkjet printer.
Some organisations and individuals prefer to call them Corporate Brochures ie, a brochure that tells people all about a corporation.
Wherever practicable, mention the benefits you or your firm can provide your clients. A few testimonials help, but don't overdo it.
Why have a Capability Statement?
When prospective clients enquire about your services or products, you send them a Capability Statement. If they visit your site and don't want to spend time reading about you and your organisation, they can download your Capability Statement file and read it later.
Clients may pass your capability statement to others when recommending your services. You can send one with your proposals, publicity materials, and on other occasions when the opportunity presents.
Some times clients may have dealt with you for years, but only buy the same service. They have no idea you also provide other services. Your Capability Statement spells out what you can do in addition to what you do for them now.
If you don't tell people what you do, how can you expect them to call you when they want something done?
What's in a Capability Statement?
It's not really a dumb question! It's a good idea to include the following topics and any others you feel are relevant:
History: When did your firm commence operations and what has it done since commencement?
What We Do: What can you do for clients or what do you sell? Do you need any special accreditations, certificates or licences to do what you do? If so, mention them.
Our Staff: Who is your staff and what special qualifications, experience, awards etc has each staff member got that will help you provide services that are better than your competitors?
Our Equipment or Resources: If you are renting training venues, hiring out equipment, or rely on resources to earn a living, place some photos in your brochures. As some smart fellow said, 'A photo tells a thousand words'. Similarly if you have a special way of doing something, try to find evidence that supports it as being the best way, most economical, safest or whatever. For example, if you clean carpets for a living you'll need to use cleaning materials that don't cause fade, are not noxious, don't harm animals or plants and so on. You get the drift.
Where You Find Us: Where is your office, venue, factory, or whatever? How does your client find you? Do you need to include a map?
Contacting Us: Where can you be contacted by phone, fax, mobile telephone, letter, or email? Do you have an Internet site?
Client Testimonials: You can place a list of your clients here under the heading 'Clients' or you can write to your clients and ask them to provide testimonial to the quality, cost effectiveness, or whatever of your service. Several of your longer term clients may be willing to accept telephone calls from people who are considering buying your goods or services.
Once you have your Capability Statement, make sure you have sufficient copies to circulate and a plan to upgrade it periodically so it continues to represent exactly what you do.
Some organisations need capability statements that are situational ie, they have several documents, each of which addresses capability in a particular part or function of their firm.
Decide what is best for you and make sure you create and maintain your Capability Statement.
Robin Henry is a human resources and development specialist and Internet marketer whose firm, Desert Wave Enterprises, helps individuals and businesses improve their performance by developing individuals and working smarter. Visit DWAVE at http://www.dwave.com.au