Some more tips on how to respond to tenders following on from Responding to Tender Questions (Part 1).
Use the evaluation criteria
Most public sector tenders (and many corporate tenders) will provide you with an evaluation criteria ie how they are going to score your response eg
- 30% price
- 60% method statements
- 10% presentation / site visits
This will often be broken down into more detail. Use this to see where you should be concentrating your efforts – in the example above you can see that method statements are more important than just being the cheapest.
You don’t always receive this with the tender but do ask for it!
Very few organisations want to stand still, they want to do better; this is why showing how you can bring new ideas to a contract is important. In this fast-moving world, things are always changing so innovation also demonstrates that you are flexible and capable of providing more than a ‘me too’ solution.
Customers are always looking to get a better deal so adding value is always going to be an important part of your bid. This means offering more ‘value for money’ NOT being cheaper eg you may be able to add a service to your bid that costs you little or nothing but saves your customer money… this will interest them!
Innovation and added value also help you stand out from the crowd. If they receive five bids that are all very similar but you have shown new ideas, improvements and added value then you are increasing your chances of success.
For public sector tenders, you now often need to demonstrate social value too. This concerns economic, social and environmental well-being of the “relevant area”.
You need to be careful with this and make sure that:
- you do submit a compliant bid first
- your alternative bid shows benefit to the customer – not just convenience for you
A client had a great example of this: the tender specification of a component had a lifespan of 10 years but our client showed that for 20% extra cost, a better quality component would last 20 years – that’s a saving worth having! (They won the contract.)
Now read Responding to Tender Questions (Part 3).