How WBD grows its knowledge network to become one of the fastest-growing US companies

By Jordan Behan | 1 May 2020

Washington Business Dynamics (WBD), a veteran-owned management consulting firm was recently named one of the fastest-growing companies in the US by Financial Times.

Read below to learn how:

  • WBD placed 10 experts in 3 bids in just a few months using OnFrontiers
  • The company’s expert knowledge network grew 5x in the same period
  • OnFrontiers is saving WBD a significant amount of time and money on expert recruiting

The challenge: finding key personnel 

WBD’s key strength is strategic advisory. Sourcing the kind of expertise they need for federal acquisition opportunities can prove challenging. While it may be similar to headhunting, building a knowledge network to assist the procurement process has additional layers of complexity. 

Projects can be very specific, meaning that there is only a small number of available, qualified individuals. Competition to secure those key personnel can be as fierce as the bidding process itself. When an opportunity becomes available, firms need to quickly decide whether they will participate in a bid and then quickly source the right talent to help their probability of winning (pWIN).

Acting quickly is paramount — WBD had an existing network of experts, but searching through that network was proving difficult, with no systematic way to engage that talent immediately. Outperforming their competition in terms of placement speed was still an issue, as was their ability to recruit new talent to fill any gaps in their existing knowledge capital. 

The solution: OnFrontiers’ knowledge network platform

At the start of 2020, WBD partnered with OnFrontiers to fill five challenging key personnel placement opportunities. First, they filed requests on the platform, specifying the kind of talent they were searching for. OnFrontiers started returning results in a matter of hours and WBD conducted 12 interviews in the several weeks following the first requests. They began placing experts as part of their bids almost immediately. 

In tandem with those time-sensitive needs, WBD laid the groundwork for its long-term strategy of building a knowledge network. The experts selected for interviews were added to their network, meaning they become part of the firm’s knowledge base and can be engaged for future opportunities.

They also began a campaign to invite experts they had relationships with to join their OnFrontiers knowledge network. This creates a channel through which they can be mobilized quickly if they are needed on a bid or placement. They can also be made aware of potentially interesting opportunities on the horizon. 

The results: efficient growth of their knowledge network

Only a few months after partnering with OnFrontiers, WBD has grown the size of its knowledge network by 5x. In that time they’ve placed 10 experts for 3 different bids and significantly increased their competitive edge on high-level federal contract opportunities. 

They have also massively reduced the time (and resulting costs) of acquiring that expertise. “We used to spend a significant amount of time sourcing the right people,” says WBD President Scott Caldwell. “We were already building a strong network but it was fragmented and difficult to mobilize. OnFrontiers has given us immediate access to great people and a clearly-defined context in which we can engage with them.” 

The speed, efficiency, and knowledge capital they gain from the OnFrontiers network is helping them continue their impressive growth trajectory. They joined the Forbes 5000 list in 2018 and as mentioned above were recently recognized by Financial Times as one of the fastest-growing companies in the Americas. 

Interested in learning more? Find out how OnFrontiers can help your team capture more business in the Federal market.