Wrapping up 2020: Platform Highlights & Popular Learning Resources

Caleb Liao
Caleb Liao

What. A. Year. 2020 has been a year that’s challenged us all in ways we never could have expected. But Loopio’s mission has remained unchanged: drive growth—personally and professionally—in the response community.

From educational resources, (virtual) networking opportunities, and our ever-evolving RFP response software, there’s a lot to reflect on, and be grateful for, as we look ahead to 2021.

In this blog, we’re recapping Loopio’s biggest product updates over the past year, our most popular resources, and providing insight on what’s in store for the year ahead.

New RFP Software Features & Updates

1. Faster Import & Expanded Support for Documents

When receiving an RFP or questionnaire, the last thing you want to worry about is the format it comes in. Getting documents into Loopio needs to be a hassle-free experience that supports many different types of documents.

This year, we’ve made it possible to easily import questionnaires with hundreds of questions and complex formatting, including SIG questionnaires with conditional questions, as well as Excel and Word documents with additional answer columns.

You can also now manage multiple documents within one Loopio Project, making project management easier, and driving more accurate reporting.

 

View of how to add multiple documents to Loopio.

 

Last, but not least, the document import process also received an upgrade. Through the power of machine learning, Loopio can now auto-identify different question and answer pairs in your Word source documents. This is just one of many steps we are taking to helping you complete RFP Projects faster.

 

Automatic selection of questions and answer pairs during import.

 


2. Empowering Collaboration for Your Entire Team

Earlier this year, we looked critically at our platform to see how we could make collaboration easier and save users even more time. We scrutinized every single click and interaction to streamline the response process as much as possible. The result? A more intuitive and completely reimagined Project Workspace.

Not only is the Project Workspace even more user-friendly, but it also includes a whole suite of new functionality:

  • Comprehensive Timelines
  • Goal Setting in Projects
  • Expanded Filter Functionality
  • Insightful Project Dashboards

<strong>Loopio’s new Project Workspace, introduced in 2020</strong>

We even created three unique views for working in Loopio. So whether you’re managing the entire RFP or just responding to a few questions, you can work the way you want (and be as efficient as possible).


3. Content That’s Even Easier to Find and Use

Personalizing your content is essential to winning more RFPs. That’s why we focused on giving users more flexibility to customize responses for specific bids.

Project Merge Variables help teams easily input client-specific information into a Project, like the client geographic location, pricing, and sales rep contacts.

Library Merge Variables enable teams to easily update key pieces of information that are repeated across multiple Library entries in Loopio. For example: your business address, funding stage, and the number of clients you have.

 

View of Loopio's Library Entry cards, displaying linked entries and merge variables.

 

The introduction of linking Library Entries also allows you to connect and find different versions of the same answer, like long form versus short form versions.

Finally, we introduced Entry Alert Texts, so you can leave instructions for your team throughout your Library. For example, letting users know that content is only for specific industries, or that an NDA needs to be signed before giving the answer.

Example of an Entry Alert Text.


4. Capturing and Reusing Your Best Content

Throughout 2020, we worked closely with customers to revamp the entire process of capturing newly created or edited RFP content, and feeding it back to your Library.

Working with more than 30 customers across multiple industries, we’ve updated our “Close Loop” workflow to create the market’s best solution for keeping content fresh and accurate.

Updates to Close Loop workflows

This approach simplifies how new (or edited) content is identified and captured in Loopio’s Library for future use, all without slowing down your response time. To learn more, check out this Help Center article.


5. More Integrations to Power Better Workflows

Just as each RFP should be tailored to suit a prospect, your RFP solution should be tailored to suit your workflow. This year, we took major steps to ensure Loopio integrates effectively with the tools you already use. Here are the highlights:

  • Chrome Extension: Allow your teams to find answers on-demand by quickly searching your Loopio Library from the Chrome extension, without ever switching tabs.
  • Open API: The flexibility to integrate with existing or future tools, giving you peace of mind that Loopio will always be a great fit for your tech ecosystem.
  • Seismic Integration: We launched an industry-first partnership with Seismic, a leading sales enablement solution provider.
  • Cloud Storage Integrations: Easily attach files (think technical diagrams or screenshots) from cloud storage solutions like Google Drive and SharePoint in just a few clicks.

Different Cloud Storage Integration Loopio offers.


Digital Events & Learning Opportunities for the Response Community

Pivoting Proposals During the Pandemic

Although RFP responders face complex challenges daily—2020 was a unique year. That’s why we brought RFP response teams together in two community-focused discussions to see how the industry was faring.

Industry Town Hall: Managing RFPs in Uncertain Times

Nearly 300 proposal managers joined our Industry Town Hall in April to learn how the community was navigating work in the wake of COVID-19. The conversation was led by three RFP experts, who discussed research trends on RFP volume changes, remote work and more.

Community Roundtable: Adjusting Proposal Strategy During a Pandemic

In May, Loopio hosted the second installment of this industry series: a community roundtable on Adjusting Your Proposal Strategy During a Pandemic. Attendees discussed further insights on RFP process challenges amid the pandemic, and how teams were adjusting. Similar to insights uncovered in April, RFP managers were most concerned with overall market and industry uncertainty. Key learnings from both of these events are recapped in the free report below.

Learn how 300+ RFP responders navigated work during the pandemic.


RFP Academy: Free Online Learning Program For RFP Responders

RFP Academy provides comprehensive, digital lessons on creating a stellar RFP response process (or seriously upgrading the one you have). Each lesson has been created with insights from industry experts, including Jon Williams, Managing Director, Strategic Proposals; Marie-France Cardin, Principal, The Winning Business; and Kathryn Bennett, Proposal Manager, Dude Solutions.

More than 700+ RFP professionals signed up for this free course in 2020.

improve-your-RFP-response-process-through-RFP-academy


Introducing Loopio’s Fresh New Look

This year, we officially evolved the Loopio brand. Through a new visual identity and redesigned Loopio.com, we are able to reflect our company values, show what we stand for, and allow our “Loopi” personality to shine through. You can read more on how we turned the page on the Loopio brand here.


Mastering Proposals & Fuelling Growth at Loopicon 2020

Loopicon—our annual conference for RFP responders—has always been run with the mission of sharing knowledge and building connections. Although the events of 2020 threw us a curveball, this goal felt more important than ever, so Loopicon became digital (and free) this year.

Over the course of two days, our annual conference welcomed 1800+ registrants, 31 speakers, 20 sessions, one live magic show, and even a virtual yoga class. Attendees learned how to level up their career and response process through expert-led workshops, thought-provoking keynotes, and digital networking opportunities.

Check out the full Loopicon 2020 recap here.


What’s Next? Looking Ahead to 2021

We can’t tell you everything we have planned for the new year… but we can give you a couple of clues. Be on the lookout for: ongoing improvements to response automation accuracy (Magic), even more business-critical integrations and better collaboration with SMEs (hint: updates coming to your inbox soon…).

We’ll also continue to support the professional and personal growth of our RFP response community, through dozens of new events, free resources, and learning opportunities to help you level-up your career as a response professional.

Thanks for spending another year with us here at Loopio—here’s to 2021.✌️

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