Top 10 tips for tendering

Top 10 tips for tendering

Recently presenting at a B2B exhibition in Kent, the top question on most lips was…  ‘What are your top 10 tips for tendering’?

Always a difficult question because there are so many tips, we have scores of them. But here is the top 10 from our list.

1. Make sure you are ready, focused and committed to the whole process

Take a real hard look at your business capability here.  Is it ready to take what can be a massive step into tendering?  Dig deep, if your gut feeling is that you are not ready then don’t go for it. Seek some professional advice and support, some investment at this stage is imperative. Sometimes its a good win to say no.

2. Be selective on the tenders you choose to go for

Only go for the tenders you’re likely to win. Tendering is costly to the business in terms of time, effort, energy and money. Search for a good fit tender that you have some a chance of winning rather than not, seek the fit with the business.  Ask yourself what are we expert at?

3. Be prepared – get tender fit

Tender fitness is one of the most important things to take account of, if you are a large business then you probably have some resources that already deal with contracts and some tendering, the biggest time waster is not being prepared and not being tender fit, for the smaller business it’s an absolute must do.

4. Have the right people around you

Serious tendering needs a team and team players.  So find those that have the right skills and commitment, it needs more than you.  If you don’t have others to call on for support then you probably need to seek some external support from external professional consultants.

5. Get the detail – the devil is in the detail

Make sure you have all of the bid documentation and check the response dates, if you need to ask questions or clarify some information there may be a cut off point for you to do so, give yourself time to ask

6. Start with the buyer in mind

We’d like a £1 for every time we reviewed a PQQ or ITT for a client only to find that the answers to questions were good, but not correct.  Think about the question, focus in on what is being asked by the buyer not what you think is being asked, closer detail in the answer will provide a better focused response and increase your chance of winning.

7. Use all available space for your response

Another great failing in the tender response is the lack of detail in the answer. So many times we see answers of 20 words (which did not answer the question being asked), when the buyer has given you space for 100.  Don’t just fill the space for filling sake but make your response appropriate answering in context to the question being posed.

8. Answer the question

As indicated above always answer the question, no real explanation required here we hope.

9. Clarify if you need to – never make assumptions

After reading the detail in the tender documentation, if its not clear or you have doubts then always clarify it with the buyer. Never assume you have the context of it correct if you are unsure.

10. Always ask for feedback

Always request feedback following a contract submission.  Good constructive feedback is really helpful as it allows you to review the feedback and make changes in your processes so that next time the response is sharper and more focused. Next time it becomes so much easier.

No more procrastination.  If tendering is right for you and you have taken all of the preliminary steps then sometimes you have to take a step into it, to be in with a chance  – ‘You have to be in it to win it’ as the saying goes.

This subject is massive, at BIZphit we have support mechanisms in place which give you help at the right time, do please get in touch for more information.

Download our complimentary Top 10 Tendering Tips from our Resources Page