This guide to responding to tender questions also relates to PQQs, RFPs etc. If you follow these simple steps, you will improve the quality of your tender responses and your chances of winning the bid.
Responding to Tender Questions Checklist
These basic actions explain tender writing best practice and how to avoid making common tendering errors.
Before you start answering the questions, make sure the tender is right for you. And make sure you plan your tender correctly.
Be Careful When Re-using Old Content
You should build up a tender response library. There’s nothing wrong with re-using good content. As long as it is relevant and customised to each tender. Avoid just cutting and pasting or sticking to a tender template.
Answer All the Questions
Simply put – don’t leave any gaps. If you do, you cannot get marked and that means zero points / no score.
Answer the Question
Don’t fudge an answer – if you are not sure then ask.
Also check that you have really answered what is being asked – not what you think is being asked.
Tell the Truth!
It’s often tempting to give the answer that is expected e.g. “Is your company ISO 9001 accredited?” Too many companies have responded: “The company is in the process of getting 9001 accreditation”. Buyers know this normally translates to “No, and no intention of getting it unless you really push me”.
Therefore give a positive response by adding when it is due to be completed (if you really are in the process) or state that you do not have 9001 but do have quality processes in place / would be willing to get it. Or just say no. NB if it is a mandatory requirement, then you may just have to pull out.
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