The majority of capability statements I write are for Australian tradespeople. You’re great at what you do, but most of you don’t proactively market yourselves. Then the work dries up, panic often sets in and the search for the next job becomes urgent. That’s where having a capability statement ready to send out is vital.
This article outlines some basic capability statement tips to get you started with preparing your document.
What is a capability statement?
Think of a capability statement as a resume for your business. It’s a summary of your skills, expertise, services and your past performance – in short, your capabilities.
The purpose of a capability statement is to introduce your business to prospective partners or clients. It outlines why your business is suitable to work with them.
What are capability statements used for?
Often Tier 1 or Tier 2 builders will ask for your capability statement before they’ll consider working with you. Government organisations also require a capability statement, often as part of a tender document. When establishing relationships with potential Joint Venture partners, a capability statement can also be beneficial.
Capability Statement tips to get you started
Every capability statement is different. While it may be tempting to copy and paste from another company’s document, it’s really not advisable. It would undermine your credibility if a prospect discovered you had copied your document or imagine if you were to come up against the company you copied from on a tender or job bid? It would not look good for you!
Get started on creating your own unique capability statement by first giving some thought to the following questions:
- Who is your intended audience?
- What do you want to achieve?
- Think about prospective clients – what information do they need to know to make an informed decision?
- Which factors which determine their choice of tradesperson?
- What topics do you need to cover?
Decide who you’re targeting and the outcome you want to achieve, then you can start to think about the contents of your document.
The essential elements are:
- Your business name and logo
- Phone number
- Email address
- ABN and ACN
- License numbers
- An introduction or overview of your business
- List of your core competencies
- Track record of performance
- Your differentiators or Unique Selling Points
- Your trade/educational qualifications
Additional contents can include, but are not limited to:
- Geographical area you cover
- Equipment you use
- Techniques you use
- Number of employees/vehicles on the road
- WHS/risk management measures – policies and procedures, insurances, safety processes
- Professional associations you are a member of
- Bio/profile of your key team members
- Major client list
- Case studies of past projects
- Testimonials from past clients
- Charts/graphs/pictures/infographics where relevant
How long should a capability statement be?
The length of your document depends on your industry requirements and how much information you wish to convey. Some people prefer to keep it simple, while others like to include a full picture of the capabilities of their business.
In Australia, most tradespeople have a multi-page capability statement. The actual length will depend entirely on the topics you wish to cover and the depth of each.
A single-page summary can be helpful to include in tender documents or RFPs.
Important final tips for your capability statement
Before you send your document out to prospective clients, be sure to have someone else read through it. Check for any spelling, grammatical errors or typographical errors. Is the information clearly structured and easy to read? Does the document “sell” your business to the reader?
If creating your capability statement in Word, be sure to convert it to a PDF before sending it. This ensures the content stays the way you intend and it looks much more professional.
Need more help?
We trust the above capability statement tips will help you write a document which helps promote your business and secure future jobs.
As professional writers with over 20 years’ experience, we’ve successfully written many hundreds of documents which help my clients win more business. We partner with Australian small business owners – including lots of tradies – to create quality marketing materials, especially capability statements.
If you’d like to chat about how we can help your company put its best foot forward with an outstanding capability statement, please get in touch.
Hi, I’m Lyndall Guinery-Smith, business owner and chief word wrangler at The Professional Writer. My team and I write content dedicated to attracting and engaging your ideal clients … and improving your bottom line. This includes website content, capability statements, company profiles, team bios, business award nominations, blog post packages and more. We happily work with clients all over Australia. Email us to arrange an obligation-free discussion about your latest project.