Acquisition Strategy vs Acquisition Plan

Strategy and Acquisition and Acquisition Plan are inherent processes in every business, but some people still don’t know how to distinguish these two terms from each other. Of course, they overlap with each other have common goals, and so on, but in themselves these meanings are different, and in this article, we will try to distinguish them. We will detail these phenomena separately so that you can see a clear difference between them.

What is an Acquisition Strategy?

An acquisition strategy is a comprehensive, large-scale plan, specifically designed for the preparation of acquisition planning. You could say that it is a pre-stage of acquisition planning because, without a strategy, few things can succeed. An acquisition strategy contains both business and technical strategies, as well as support strategies for managing risk and achieving the program’s goal. A well-developed acquisition strategy will help keep your company on track throughout the acquisition process. It helps keep track of the right connections between milestones and key events.

The main purpose of an acquisition strategy is to record the approach to program development throughout its lifespan so that later management and third parties involved in the project can make decisions more easily.

It is very important for every company to have a well-formulated acquisition strategy because the future success of the project depends on it. To formulate an acquisition strategy as best as possible you can:

  • Start developing a strategy as early as possible – in no case put off such an important thing to the last days before the delivery, because at such moments you can leave out some important element and later because of this there will be difficulties
  • Try to involve the project team as much as possible – strategy development involves many topics from different areas, so it would be great to have experts from those areas to advise you on these topics
  • Be honest and straightforward in your work – there are times when an acquisition strategy has only been developed based on what management wants to hear
  • Think about choosing the right type of contract

What is acquisition planning?

An acquisition plan documents all of the cost, schedule, technical, business, management, and other considerations that will drive the acquisition program, and is derived from the acquisition strategy. It summarizes acquisition planning discussions and defines the key steps in the acquisition process. So if you compare acquisition strategy vs acquisition plan, you can find that one process flows from the other, they are closely related and therefore can sometimes get confused. 

To complete a company’s acquisition planning, a written plan must be prepared. Elements of a written acquisition plan include the following:

Statement of Need. Provide a plan summarizing the need. Briefly describe the maintenance and commercial background of the acquisition.

Applicable Conditions. State any material terms and conditions impacting the acquisition, such as interoperability needs with current or prospective systems or software, in addition to value, timeline, limitations on capabilities or features.

Costs. Indicate the targeted acquisition costs established and their justification, and consider the relevant expense concepts to be used.

Capabilities or Characteristics. Include the consumable opportunities or attributes requested or the productivity level of the services to be acquired and identify how they correlate to the needs.

Timeframe for supply or performance demands. Outline the framework for setting supply or performance timing requirements.

Compromises. Negotiate the anticipated consequences of compromises between different inputs, opportunities, or features, and set timeline objectives.