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Article Details

Published Date: 13-08-2010
Author: Executive Compass
Category: Tender Writing & Bid Management
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Writing the tender and ensuring the theme is consistent is the third of five short articles providing tips to improve your tender writing.

Tender writing can be difficult and time consuming but ensuring that your tender theme is maintained throughout and that the style of writing is consistent is really important. You can do everything else right with your tender writing but if you end up with a disjointed and contradictory tender you will really struggle to win the project.

Small tenders are obviously much easier to manage. If there are only one or two tender writers it is easy to monitor the style and content of the tender. However, even small tenders often get broken down into smaller pieces and are spread across a number of people. This can be for subject specialism reasons or simply because the tender management team believe that “many hands make light work”.

The trouble is with sharing out the tender writing work is that people have different styles of writing, different competency levels and of course competing priorities. They could also have a different understanding and interpretations of the tender theme and any tender management briefing sessions. Unfortunately that is the nature of people! It is important that all writers understand exactly what message the firm is attempting to convey. Make sure that the tender theme is fully understood and that the tender writers know how it should translate into their section of the tender.

It is a good idea to review content regularly. If you have asked someone to write a 3,000 word section on your environmental credentials or perhaps about sustainable procurement, you should review the first 1000 words. That way you can see if the tender writer is writing the tender coherently and consistently, is accurate in their portrayal of the company but also that they are following the tender theme as well as they can.
Some practical ways of ensuring the theme is consistent is to ask all the tender writers to mention an aspect of the theme three times within their section of the tender. The number of times you ask the writers to mention the tender theme will depend on the size of their section of the tender but it is a good way to keep them on track. If it appears unnatural or forced you can simply remove it from the tender.

• Make sure all the tender writers understand whether they are writing in the first person or the third person and keep it consistent throughout the tender.
• Agree the type of language you are going to use in the tender. You can use business formal, technical or something in between.

• Many business writers use overly florid language when they are writing a tender. Whatever you decide make sure that everyone is writing in the same style.

• Agree your sentence and paragraph structure for the tender. You do not want one tender writer using mainly bullet points and another writer using long narrative sections.

Agree a tender writing theme and style and stick to it and you will improve your chances of winning more tenders.

The next blog on tender writing will be about how you ensure you hit the tender deadlines. Sometimes a tender has to be written at short notice and this blog will show you how to ensure your tender is submitted on time.

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