VT Summit 2023: A Fusion of AI, Innovation, and Industry Insights

Whether you're revisiting the VT Summit 2023 to refresh your memory or catching up on what you missed, we're thrilled to bring you the highlights and key insights from this extraordinary event. Held at the stunning Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center, National Harbor, the VT Summit 2023 wasn't just another entry in the calendar of conferences. It was a groundbreaking day that marked a new era in technology and proposal management, bringing together some of the most brilliant minds in the industry.
Micheál McGrath

Head of Marketing

7 min read

If you’d like to skip this summary and go straight to the recordings and slides. Select any of the following recordings, complete the form and we’ll send you all recordings and slides immediately. 

As dawn broke on this landmark event, a palpable sense of excitement and anticipation filled the air. Attendees from various sectors gathered, eager to delve into a world where cutting-edge AI seamlessly blends with human creativity and expertise. The summit was designed not just as a platform for passive listening but as a dynamic space for active participation, hands-on learning, and transformative experiences. Featuring a stellar lineup of industry giants and forward-thinking innovators, the VT Summit 2023 stood as a guiding light for those navigating the rapidly changing landscape of technology and business.

Join us as we take you through the heart of this vibrant event, a place where each discussion, workshop, and interaction was a step towards shaping the future. Here’s your window into the energy, the ideas, and the groundbreaking moments of VT Summit 2023.

AI’s Role in Proposal Management: Insights from APMP

The summit kicked off with a deep dive into AI’s transformative role in proposal management. Fergal McGovern of VisibleThread and Rick Harris of APMP US discussed the integration of AI, particularly chatbots and large language models, in enhancing proposal processes. They emphasized AI as an empowerment tool, balancing its capabilities with the need for security and intellectual property protection. This talk set the tone for the day, highlighting AI’s potential and its challenges, such as the risk of inaccurate outputs.

  • AI as a Transformative and Empowering Tool: AI, particularly chatbots and large language models, is recognized as a transformative technology in various fields. It is not just an automation tool but also an empowerment tool that enhances individual capabilities and aids in making informed decisions. This includes its application in proposal management, where AI can significantly improve drafting, summarizing, and efficiency.

  • Understanding AI’s Capabilities and Challenges: There is a strong emphasis on understanding both the capabilities and limitations of AI. This includes addressing concerns related to intellectual property, security, and the risk of inaccurate outputs or ‘hallucinations’. Professionals are encouraged to learn and adapt to AI technologies, understanding how to effectively prompt and interact with these systems.

  • Balancing Hype with Practical Application and Future Integration: The discussion balances the excitement around AI with practical advice on its integration into business processes. It foresees AI becoming as ubiquitous and essential as the internet, with organizations like APMP planning to offer education and resources to help professionals understand and utilize AI in bid and proposal management, ensuring a cautious but open-minded approach.

VisibleThread has done things the right way; they are an expert in their field and what they do.

Navigating Government Contracting: A Panel Discussion

A panel featuring experts from VMware, Karney, and Anser explored the evolving landscape of proposal management in government contracting. They shared strategies for success, emphasizing the importance of effective capture processes, content management, and adapting to government requirements. The integration of AI and technology in proposal management was a key focus, with discussions on its potential and the challenges it brings.

  • Navigating Complexities in Government Contracting: The panelists highlight the unique challenges in government contracting, such as tight proposal timelines, the need for detailed pricing justifications, and a shift towards oral presentations and slide decks. They emphasize the importance of adapting to these challenges, including trends like small business set-asides and evolving government requirements.

  • Strategies for Effective Proposal Management: The discussion underscores the need for effective capture and proposal management strategies. This includes frontloading work, adhering to critical review stages, managing content effectively, and tailoring proposals to specific clients and projects. The panelists also stress the importance of incorporating quantifiable benefits and metrics in proposals to demonstrate value.

  • Integrating AI and Emphasizing Client Focus in Proposals: While there is varied familiarity with AI in proposal management among the panelists, they acknowledge its potential to enhance proposal processes, albeit with a learning curve. Additionally, there’s a strong focus on understanding client needs, customizing proposals accordingly, and protecting intellectual property, especially in the context of using AI and other technologies. Effective collaboration and resource management are also highlighted as key to successful proposal delivery.

Our government proposals are condensing in their timelines. We're not getting the standard 30-day RFP turnaround; sometimes we're going down to 15 and even three days. Running the current documents through VisibleThread and having those comments in there to adjudicate as well helps us get ahead of those timelines.

The Future of VisibleThread: A Roadmap Presentation

Fergal McGovern returned to present VisibleThread’s product roadmap, focusing on the integration of AI in their offerings. He discussed the evolution of AI, its impact on industries, and the future direction of VisibleThread’s products. The presentation highlighted the use of AI as an augmentation tool, improvements in usability, and the importance of security and IP protection.

  • AI’s Evolution and Its Integration in Industry: The presentation focused on the rapid evolution of AI, especially large language models, and their expanding role across various industries. It highlights the integration of AI in proposal management and document analysis, demonstrating how AI can significantly aid in drafting, summarizing, and enhancing process efficiency.

  • VisibleThread’s Advancements and AI’s Challenges: Fergal discussed the latest developments in VisibleThread’s products, particularly improvements in handling complex tasks like parsing documents. Alongside this, the presentation addresses the challenges of AI, including the risks of inaccurate outputs and the need for responsible use, especially in sensitive areas. The emphasis is on AI as a solution for augmenting human capabilities, not replacing them.

  • Future Directions, Security, and User Collaboration: The future roadmap of VisibleThread was outlined, with a focus at further innovations and the integration of generative AI in a secure and effective manner. The presentation underscores the importance of security and intellectual property protection. Additionally, it highlights the role of customer feedback and collaboration in shaping product development, along with practical demonstrations of the software’s improved usability and efficiency.

Unleashing AI in Business Writing

A panel discussion featuring Rebecca Link, Marty Humm, and Fergal McGovern explored the integration of AI in business writing. They discussed AI as a tool to augment human capabilities, the ethical and responsible use of AI, and its role in the entire writing process. The panelists predicted that AI would become a ubiquitous tool in writing, emphasizing the need for professionals to adapt to its advancements.

  • AI as a Revolutionary Tool in Writing: The panelists discuss the significant impact of AI, particularly generative AI, in revolutionizing the writing process across various industries, including proposal development and business writing. They highlight AI’s potential to enhance efficiency and open new opportunities, while also emphasizing its role in the full writing process, from research to content refinement.

  • Balancing AI’s Potential with Challenges and Ethical Use: While acknowledging AI’s capabilities in augmenting human writing, the panelists stress that AI is a tool, not a replacement for human creativity and oversight. They address the challenges of using AI, such as the risk of inaccurate outputs, and emphasize the importance of ethical and mindful use, ensuring AI aligns with human values and addresses data security and privacy concerns.

  • Future Outlook and Adaptation to AI in Writing: The discussion foresees AI becoming a ubiquitous and rapidly evolving tool in writing, akin to the internet’s role today. The panelists underscored the importance of adapting to AI advancements, learning to use these tools effectively, and incorporating AI responsibly into various writing processes, as demonstrated through practical applications and demonstrations.

It is our responsibility to become ethical users of these tools... if you are inputting things into these models that are open, that information now becomes part of the internet of things and available to anything and everyone.

VisibleThread and Aptive Resources: A Case Study

Anatalia Macik from Aptive Resources presented a case study on implementing VisibleThread’s VT Docs and VT Writer tools. She shared insights on the challenges faced in proposal writing, the benefits of these tools in compliance and efficiency, and the overall impact on proposal quality and win rates. This practical application of VisibleThread’s tools highlighted their effectiveness in real-world scenarios.

  • Enhancing Proposal Writing and Compliance: Anatalia shares her experience in transforming proposal departments, focusing on overcoming challenges like compliance issues and the need for more efficient processes. She emphasizes the importance of compliance in proposal writing and how VisibleThread’s tools, particularly VT Docs, have been instrumental in creating compliance matrices efficiently, a key step in ensuring proposals meet all requirements.

  • Improving Writing Quality and Responsiveness with VisibleThread: The implementation of VisibleThread at Aptive Resources is highlighted, with VT Docs used for compliance checks and VT Writer for enhancing writing quality. VT Writer’s ability to provide objective analysis of writing, improving readability and reducing passive voice, is noted. Additionally, the use of discovery analysis in VT Docs helps in identifying crucial keywords in solicitation documents, thereby improving the responsiveness of proposals.

  • Process Optimization, Cost Savings, and Positive Team Adoption: Anatalia discusses the importance of documenting processes when using VT Docs and regularly updating compliance matrices. She also highlights the benefits of engaging with VisibleThread’s customer success managers. The adoption of VisibleThread has led to cost savings, positive reception by the team, increased usage of the tools, and notable improvements in proposal quality, time efficiency, staff morale, and higher win rates. The acronym analysis feature of VisibleThread is also mentioned to ensure clarity in proposals.

VT docs is the easiest, simplest solution [for compliance]. You run it through, you shred the RFP, you're done, right? No, that's step one. You do the shred, and that saves us so much time. What can take days... now it's done in minutes.

Tech, Talent, and Tomorrow: A Live Podcast

The summit concluded with a podcast recording discussing the interplay between technology, talent, and future industry trends. The panelists covered topics like technology’s impact on jobs, the importance of empathy in leadership, and the evolving roles in the industry. They emphasized the value of human input in the AI era and the need for continuous learning and adaptation. This podcast and many more will be available here.

  • Technology Augmenting Jobs and Creating New Roles: The panelists explore how technology, especially AI, is not only augmenting existing jobs but also creating new opportunities and roles within organizations, such as prompt engineers and positions focused on data manipulation for AI models. They emphasize viewing technology as a complement to human work rather than a replacement.

  • Challenges and Importance of Empathy, Diversity, and Professional Development: The discussion acknowledges the challenges in adopting new technologies at the enterprise level and overcoming resistance to change. It also highlights the significance of empathy in leadership, the value of diverse perspectives in the industry, and the necessity of continuous professional development to keep up with technological advancements.

  • Balancing Human Expertise with Technological Advancements: The conversation underscores the enduring value of human input and expertise in an era increasingly influenced by AI and technology. This includes focusing more on content and intelligence management, adapting to different leadership and communication styles, and considering cultural differences in work-life balance and work habits to maintain well-being.

People, Process, Tools... There's an order there. The people have to know what they're doing, the process has to be in place in order for the tool to fit into the process. Once you figure out what step that is, then you find the tools that can help you make those steps be accomplished faster.

In Conclusion

The VT Summit 2023 was not just an event; it was a journey into the future of technology and proposal management. Participants left equipped with new skills, insights, and a deeper understanding of how to navigate the evolving landscape of their industry. This summit was a testament to the power of collaboration, innovation, and forward-thinking in shaping the future of business and technology.

A reminder to all customers and those interested in learning more about VisibleThread’s products. VT University is a free resource. Online training for all our products, feature by feature. It’s a fun and easy way to become certified in our solutions. 


Book a Demo