All too often we come across tenders that have been compiled with generic material and a last minute “copy and paste job”. This may be the easiest option when you have an impending deadline and other job commitments, but it is unlikely to win you that all-important tender and showcase your capabilities as an organisation.
When writing a tender it is vital to stand out to the contracting authority through the use of evidence and a professionally written response. It is going to be obvious if your answer is pieced together from generic materials, and it will neither read well nor be a strong submission.
Bid Library and Stock Responses
There is nothing wrong with collecting supporting documents and evidence to be stored in a bid library, such as: CVs, policies and procedures and case studies. However, we do not recommend placing stock answers into a bid library to then be slotted into a submission as a “one size fits all”. This isn’t going to produce a winning response and your material will quickly become outdated and nonspecific.
It is a good idea to keep all previous submissions to analyse any feedback and use as a form of continuous improvement but do not be tempted to copy and paste the same material. It is crucial to remember that although questions in tenders may be similar, there are always differences and therefore a fresh response is required which is specific to the individual contract.
Compiling relevant documents and evidence which is applicable to the tender allows your response to be fully compliant, instead of including information which may or may not actually be relevant to the contract.
Sticking to the Specification and Criteria
The specification of a tender exists not only to guide and structure your submission, but also to test your organisation and ultimately to try and evaluate your level of quality against another organisation. The specific criteria for a bid allows you to identify exactly what the contracting authority is looking for and should determine the structure of your response with regard to quality and pricing elements.
The use of a generic answer, which may have been used in previous submissions or taken from elsewhere, is not going to answer the questions set out for you fully, or adhere to the specification, as it is not tailored to that specific bid. Writing an original response for every bid enables your submission to be fully compliant with the criteria, deliver an evidence-based answer which is personalised to the specification and best showcase your organisation’s competences and capabilities.
Copying previous material also amplifies the margin for error, as you may miss an element crucial to the tender and not answer the question as best as possible.
Reviewing and Analysing Your Submission
We understand more than anyone that bid and tender writing is time consuming and at times frustrating; but ultimately it is more important to spend a bit more time producing an individual submission which is successful and wins you a contract. This can include reviewing and analysing your bid before it is submitted to ensure it is quality assured and meets all of the criteria.
Professional Tender Writers
We have had clients in the past who have not understood how our service works. We do not use a bid library of stock answers; instead all of our bid writers spend time gathering relevant information and working alongside a client in order to produce a winning tender. We have a wealth of experience across a number of different sectors but this doesn’t mean we use generic answers – rather we have the professional writing techniques to improve and add value to your bid. Once retained by a client, we also work exclusively for your organisation so you are assured your submission is individual.
Recently at Executive Compass, we heard that a contracting authority received three identical responses to a tender, and all three firms were immediately disqualified from the process. This enforces the need for fresh content for every submission or you may lose out altogether!
To discuss your requirements with one of our bid writers please fill in our enquiry form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.