Public Sector Tendering: Tailoring your bid response to the contract

Now that you know how to choose the right tender opportunities and the questions to ask when bidding for public sector tenders, it’s time to talk about tailoring your bid response to the contract.

Cut and paste may seem like the most efficient way to get a tender response through the door; however, procurers can see right through this.

If you are currently reusing answers from a previous tender response, you won’t be the only one; but this may be the reason why you are not winning work with the public sector. The most effective way to grab a buyer’s attention is to tailor your bid response to the contract.

Find out the best ways to do this below.


Why should you always tailor tender submissions?

There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all tender submission. If you want to win public sector tenders it is important that you do NOT cut and paste from the answers contained in a previous tender response.

There may be times when your business can repurpose content; this though runs the risk of your answers not matching the questions should additional questions subsequently be asked.


Answer the question

This may seem obvious; however, many organisations are guilty of straying from the original question.

When making a tender submission, never assume what the authority needs, as this might be totally different to what is being requested in the specification.

Provide tailored answers to that specification; if your business cannot do this, then it may be a sign that you should focus on another tender that may be more suitable.


Answer all questions

Starting from scratch may seem daunting; however, not all tender specifications are the same and they will not contain the same questions.

If you go into the bid writing process using the same set of answers time and time again, this may leave you with unanswered questions at the end.

It is imperative that you answer all questions asked. If you fail to do this your tender will be marked as incomplete.



Always proof your tender responses

Whether you are bid writing for the first, the fiftieth or the five-hundredth time, you can only benefit from someone independent looking over your tender submission with a fresh pair of eyes.

PASS Principal Procurement Consultant Eddie Regan says that this type of feedback is invaluable in helping suppliers identify errors they never notice.

In a market worth over £250 billion, a day or two assigned to proofing and perfecting your bid is well spent.


Check the questions and the answers

While you are proofing your answers, always read through the specification one more time, checking the questions.

If you are unsure of what any question is asking you, always ask the buyer for clarification. Working on responses early will give you enough time to fix any problems.

That said, when working on the bid, don’t leave the hardest questions to last; given the regularity with which contractors leave responding to questions to the last minute, the danger is that you could end up providing a weak answer to a very important question due to poor time management.

If you missed our blog on “What to ask before writing your tender response”, find it here.


Bid support

PASS Procurement’s Bid Review consultancy service is designed to assist any business (big or small) review their bid processes thoroughly.

If you would like to work with an expert procurement consultant and learn how you can improve your tender bids, Tracker customers receive a discount on PASS training as part of their membership benefits!

Learn more about Tracker membership benefits or find out more about becoming a Tracker customer.



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