23 Jul 2014by Georgie Cousens

What’s involved in a tender and what do you need to include?

What’s involved in a tender and what do you need to include?

Tender is a great concept, traditionally used by governmental agencies but more and more utilised by the private sector. By using tendering, an organisation is able to pool together a large number of possible suppliers, and as a result will find the one business that offers the greatest value for money and is most suitable for their needs.

When replying to a tender request by a governmental department, there are very strict guidelines and regulations to incorporate within the tender. This is to a fair and ethical selection processes, which are equal and non-discriminatory. But the time and effort spent on a government tender may pay off  – big time! If your tender is successful it will supply you with a strong and reliable reference for future applications. So if you have one successful tender application within the government environment, the chances are high you will be successful with others.

Although the private sector has far less rigid guidelines and regulations to adhere to, there are certain aspects that the selection panel will focus on and should therefore be included.

Ideally a tender has to show evidence of the following things:

  • Is your company ready to take on the proposed project? You need to show evidence, examples and projections on how and why your company will be fit to handle it
  • You may be ready and can prove it, but there’ll always be a risk involved. What is this risk, and how are you going to deal with the worst-case scenario?
  • What evidence can you show of your past performance with other clients and projects? What were your strengths and weaknesses? Give real-life examples. Testimonials, as well as facts and figures might be a good idea here.
  • All direct and indirect financial costs and benefits over the life of the project. Of course figures are key here. Let them shine but be realistic! There’s no gain in hiding the real figures.
  • How are you going to react to changes during the life of the project? This is especially important if the project goes over a long time-period. How flexible are you and how are you going to deal with it?

Now you know what to include, but what key factors is the evaluator looking for? Questions they might be asking when choosing:

  • Has the applicant got the required knowledge, experience and expertise to complete the job successfully? Is this genuine and have they shown this with evidence?
  • Is the applicant a good match considering our values, mission and vision? Has the applicant done the research and do they know what we stand for? What are their values? Can we work together?
  • Has the applicant considered all possible risks? How are they ensuring accountability? Do they understand the importance of these  aspects to the project?
  • Have they shown evidence of forward-thinking? Are they innovative and courageous enough to present new ideas? However, what are the possible risks of these innovations?
  • How will the applicant deal with changes? Are they flexible enough to handle unforeseen changes? How far are they willing to go to satisfy our needs?

You will always want to show and prove quality, reliability and efficiency of your work and your past projects in everything you include in your tender. The proof is in the pudding as they say.

Do you feel completely overwhelmed now or have you got your content sorted for your next tender? Either way, get in touch with us now and see how we can help you prepare your next successful tender. We can help at every step of the process.

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