Everyone has likely experienced when you are paragraphs into an unsaved document and your computer crashes. If you were born before the 2000s, you probably have had this heart-sinking experience BEFORE auto-save and cloud recovery features were available, so all your hard work was just gone forever, and you had to start over. You may remember the gist of what you wrote, but you will waste a lot of time re-writing what you already had. 

Many proposal sections can be recycled into others and save you time. However, if you have a disorganized or ad hoc content management style, this can make finding what you want to reuse nearly impossible. When you start proposal planning, it is easier to have an organized, user-friendly content library to pull from, rather than trying to remember which proposal that perfectly applicable past performance example was in. You will waste too much time digging through emails and network folders looking for relevant content. 

Reuse material is useless if you can’t find it. 

While it does take time to establish and maintain a content library, they are incredibly useful. The system you use to store and sort proposal content doesn’t matter as much as the quality of the content itself. Make sure the content there is relevant. Review the content regularly to make sure it is not outdated, irrelevant, or inaccurate.  

Reuse material can save you significant time as you prepare proposals. However, you must use an organized content library and maintain quality content for it to be most effective.