There are a number of simple things that you, as a non bid or tender writer, can do to significantly improve your bid and tender writing beyond recognition and improve your chances of winning more projects.
1. Your need to aim to get the highest score for your tender based on the evaluation criteria? This is the most important thing for you to achieve. You should study the marking and weighting criteria for your bid and make sure that what you have written will get the highest score. If you don’t get the highest score, you don’t win the bid or tender.Simple!! Anything you have written, no matter how brilliant or important you think it is, will score you a point unless it is relevant and addresses an element of the criteria.Read through the invitation to tender carefully and identify what you need to score highly.
2. Is your bid or tender compliant? One word over the word count, or in the wrong format and your bid is not compliant! If it is not compliant with every requirement, your bid or tender may not even get to the evaluation panel. When there are lots of proposals to wade through, the easiest way to get out of reading them all is to disqualify as many as possible based on non-compliance. More bids and tenders are disqualified for being late than for being poor quality!
3. Does your tender include all of the key themes? You must use the correct terminology instead of your own. You MUST use all of the themes and key words from the ITT. ( Invitation to Tender)
4.Make sure your tender answers all the questions the customer might have? An easy way to ensure that you answer the customer’s questions is to address “who,” “what,” “where,” “how,” “when,” and “why” in your response. Look at what you have written and ask yourself questions that start with those words. See if you can’t add detail to your tender by providing answers to all of them.
5. Does every sentence pass the “So what?” test? Explain what matters in your bid and why. Make sure you say why it matters, this is often more important than the actual statement. Do not waffle on, make every sentence in your bid count.
6. Does your bid or tender exceed the requirements? Everyone is responding to the same set of questions. Your competition will also be compliant. If your tender is merely compliant then at best you are in the race and competing on price and at worst vulnerable to someone else offering something better. Exceeding the specifications of the tender does not have to mean increasing your price. If it’s a choice between two vendors with the same offering and one offers a better written response or does a better job of answering the customers (written and unwritten) questions, then that will be the one who will win the bid.
7. Does it give the evaluator a reason to want what you are offering? The customer is making a purchase and has numerous offerings to choose from. Does your bid make them want what you’re offering more than what anyone else might be offering? Do they drool at the thought of working with you? Your bid must provide compelling reasons for the evaluator to select you (as opposed to someone else).
8. Is it written from the customer’s perspective and not simply a description of yourself? Put yourself in the clients shoes, tell a story tell a compelling story. If every sentence of your tender starts with your company’s name, there’s a good chance that you have written about yourself and not about what matters to the client. When you talk with a sales person, do you want to hear them talk all about themselves or do you want to hear them talk about what the offering will do for you and how you will benefit from it? Look at every sentence and make sure that every feature, attribute, or piece of information you provide is put into the customer’s context.
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