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Request for Proposals (RFP) – Workforce Alliance Strategy

Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County

Workforce Alliance Strategy

Request for Proposals

Release Date: January 13, 2022

Proposal Submission Date: January 31, 2022

CLICK HERE to download the RFP (.pdf)


Workforce Alliance Strategy


Brief description of the effort or need

Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County (CAP) is seeking an experienced Workforce Consultant to work with community partner organizations to develop a Workforce Alliance Initiative that will guide the direction and priorities to answer the urgent and longterm need to address workforce opportunities and challenges throughout Lancaster County, PA.

The successful respondent will use a variety of techniques to work with the Project Team and others over a period of four (4) to six (6) months to set the strategic direction for the future, while also offering some tactical steps to address critical needs. Workforce development challenges are impacted by a myriad of community issues (education, skills training, wage & benefits, childcare, transportation, housing) and other factors in creating an environment for leveraging all citizens skills in the workplace. Significant research, analysis and activities already exist in the marketplace. The expectation is the successful respondent will build upon local conditions where appropriate and have the capabilities to identify gaps or shifts to accelerate workforce solutions.

Collaborative Partners (brief description of each partner org)

The primary Partners involved in the Project include:

  • The Community Action Partnership is Lancaster County’s largest anti-poverty organization and boasts a service profile that interrupts inter-generational poverty with programs that assist families at every age and place in life.
  • The Lancaster Chamber is a 1400-member business organization with a Mission to “Create the environment, facilitate partnerships and lead on issues that elevate business success.”
  • The Economic Development Company of Lancaster County is the leading organization in Lancaster County dedicated to advancing long-term economic health.
  • The Lancaster County Workforce Development Board, is the administrative and fiscal agent for Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) funding. The Board seeks to align fiscal resources and provide strategic direction for Lancaster County jobseekers and employers.

Additional partner organizations, including County and City governments, are anticipated as the project progresses.

Project Description

For decades, Lancaster County has been fortunate to boast a stable economy and a consistently low unemployment rate. The County has consistently outperformed the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with our economic success.

Now, like many areas of the country, that good fortune is threatened as we find ourselves increasingly challenged by a lack of workforce to fill the demands of Industry. Challenges around skills training, education, transportation, childcare, housing, aging demographics, slow population growth and more are all a part of the problem that confronts us. More specifics on the challenges can be found in the attached report from the Center for Regional Analysis (a division of the Economic Development Company).

While we have many solid organizations and initiatives dedicated to dealing with the above issues, Lancaster County lacks a comprehensive approach and strategy to align our efforts, to find opportunities to leverage organizational skill sets and to create a “road map” that can chart a clear path toward progress.

The project envisions securing a consultant (or consultant team) that can guide our organizations, our elected officials, and our broader constituencies (educators, business leaders, social service agencies, residents, etc.) on a process aimed at seeking input, testing strategies and, ultimately creating a Strategic Plan for all of us to follow. The plan should also include timelines, organizational accountabilities, benchmarks, and measurements for success/progress.

Goals and Objectives

  • The development of a Lancaster County Workforce Strategic Plan (covering both the short-term and long-term) that includes measurable goals, timelines and clearly stated accountability and to include best practices.
  • The articulation (as part of the strategy) of the structure or mechanism to tie together the myriad interests with a stake in workforce development in Lancaster County

Consultant Qualifications

The consultant should have:

  • Relevant and recent experience in working with strong nonprofit, public and private sector organizations to develop Workforce strategies
  • Direct experience in developing forward-thinking place-based workforce strategies
  • Demonstrable high quality facilitation skills

Request for Proposal Submission Requirements

CAP requests proposals of no more than five (5) pages in length that describe your team, including its qualifications; your experience and approach providing and planning services to similar agencies and/or communities, your proposed process, including methods, procedures and number of meetings, for providing these services; a work schedule that identifies meeting dates, time frames for major work elements, target dates for key milestones, and dates for completion of a draft and final plan; and a proposed detailed budget for these services.

Please provide a budget that includes the following:

  • Number of estimated hours for each activity with a breakdown by person assigned
  • Billing rate per person assigned
  • Estimated out-of-pocket expenses
  • Method of billing

On a separate sheet (which will not count toward the five (5) page limit), please provide the names and contact information for up to three (3) references, preferably agencies or organizations for which you have recently provided similar services.

Interested applicants should submit their completed proposal and a letter of interest in PDF format to:

Community Action Partnership
Attention: Vanessa Philbert, CEO
601 S. Queen St.
Lancaster, PA 17603

Proposals must be received by CAP no later than January 31st, 2022, COB. Proposals received after this time will not be considered.

CAP reserves the right to reject all proposals, to request additional information concerning any proposals for purposes of clarification, to accept or negotiate any modifications to any proposal, following the deadline for receipt of all proposals, and to waive any irregularities, if such would serve the best interest of CAP.

RFP Timeline (all dates are tentative)

  • Release date: January 13, 2022
  • RFP return date: January 31st, 2022
  • Finalist interview date: February 10th, 2022
  • Selection date: February 14th, 2022
  • Engagement start date: March 1st, 2022

RFP Evaluation

If an award is made as a result of this RFP, it shall be awarded to the respondent whose proposal is most advantageous to CAP with price and other factors considered. These include responses to the RFP questions; demonstrated technical ability and expertise; financial stability; reference calls and/or recommendations; prior experience and knowledge; presentations to the evaluation team (if applicable); product samples which CAP may, at its discretion, request as part of the RFP process; any additional criteria deemed appropriate by CAP which would lend itself to establishing the consultant’s viability to perform the work as outlined in this RFP.

Deliverables/Evaluation Criteria add references

Proposals must include the following information.

  1. Detailed Plan to Create a Comprehensive, Complete, Achievable and Sustainable Workforce Strategic Plan. The Consultant must provide in writing a detailed plan indicating exactly how they will address each of the goals and objectives.
  2. Qualifications of Agency or Individual Applicant strength and stability: The Consultant must review their strengths, stability, experience and technical competence. Consultants must list the logic of their project organization and adequacy of labor commitment.
  3. Qualifications of Personnel: Consultants must list their qualifications, education and experience for all project staff and list key personnel’s level of involvement in performing related work.
  4. Related Experience: The Consultant must list their experience in providing services similar to those requested. Recent experiences in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania are preferred.

  5. Completeness of Response: All responses must be complete and in accordance with RFP instructions. There will be no exceptions to or deviation from the RFP requirements.

  6.  Reasonableness of Cost and Price: The Consultants’ firm-fixed prices and/or hourly rate must be reasonable and competitive with quoted firm-fixed prices with other proposals received. Proposals must include a project payment schedule.

    • Based on similar recent engagement, a project cost of $35,000 – $55,000 is anticipated, however respondents are not limited by this range and should justify the budget necessary to complete the goals and objectives

    • Project completion date: No later than September 1, 2022

Both hard copies and electronic copies of the Final Plan must be provided to CAP in PDF format within two weeks of project completion. 10% of the contracted costs will be retained until all services under the contract have been completed and approved by CAP.

Any questions regarding this RFP should be submitted in writing to Vanessa Philbert @

False or Misleading Statements:

Consultants must take great care to ensure that sufficient information has been provided to allow CAP to evaluate the solution being offered, any options proposed, pricing of all offerings, and all supporting information, technical documentation, references and points of contact, etc.

The Consultants understand that if, in the opinion of CAP, a proposal contains false or misleading information of any kind or does not contain sufficient detail to fully evaluate the proposed plan or proposed price, CAP reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to reject the proposal. Agencies/Individuals also understand that if the information provided does not support a function, attribute, capability or condition as proposed by the Consultant, CAP may reject the proposal. The Consultant further understands that any modifications to the questions in this RFP by the responder may result in immediate rejection of that proposal.

Acceptance of Proposal Content: The Consultant understands that CAP reserves the right to award a contract without further discussions or clarifications with Consultants. Thus, the contents of the RFP response and all pricing, terms and statements contained therein will be binding upon Individual/agency. Upon acceptance of the Proposal by CAP, the successful Proposal, including all terms, conditions and pricing contained therein, will be incorporated into the awarded contract. The Consultant understands that failure of the potentially successful offer to accept this obligation may result in the selection of another offer or rejection of the submitted Proposal.

The Consultant must take great care to respond to all requirements of this RFP to the maximum extent possible. Consultant must clearly identify any limitations and/or exceptions to the requirements inherent in the proposed system.

No Obligation to Buy: CAP reserves the right to refrain from contracting with any Consultant. The release of this RFP does not compel CAP to purchase services.

Cost of Preparing Proposals: CAP is not liable for any costs incurred by Consultants in the preparation and presentation of proposals and demonstrations submitted in response to this RFP.


About the Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County (CAP)

The Community Action Partnership is Lancaster County’s largest anti-poverty organization, helping low income families move toward self-sufficiency. CAP’s service profile interrupts inter-generational poverty with programs that support families and individuals at every age and place in life, in the areas of education and child development, health and nutrition, household stability and safety and empowerment. For more information, visit