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Published Date: 19-06-2024
Author: Philippa Gibby
Category: General
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This month, Ewan celebrates his one-year anniversary as a bid writer. Since joining Executive Compass, he has worked on dozens of bid and tender submissions, producing competitive, high-quality responses that have resulted in crucial contract wins for our clients.

In this spotlight session, Ewan shares details of his experience, reflects on his most memorable projects so far, and shares advice for any aspiring or trainee bid writers.

Starting a career as a bid writer

I saw the role of bid writer advertised at the start of 2023 and thought it seemed interesting and a career that I could excel in. I have a background in mechanical engineering, and during my interviews with Executive Compass, I quickly discovered the range of transferrable skills I could apply to the bid writing role.

Executive Compass has a proven approach to bid writing, which all our team are trained in when they join the organisation. I found my initial training sessions with our Technical Director, Matthew Walker, to be highly informative, covering wider industry terminology such as SQs, PQQs and ISOs, as well as our company policies, processes and our approach to writing persuasive, high-quality tender bids.

One of the first bids that I was involved in at Executive Compass was for one of our long-term retention clients who provide gas servicing. I found it exciting to begin applying the processes Matthew Walker taught us, such as breaking questions down into headings, navigating submission portals and client management, both during calls and whilst writing responses. It was really interesting to work with the client and understand more about their business and how they operate.

Memorable projects and wins

Over the past year I have completed numerous tenders for a whole host of clients, including contracts for voids repair programmes, cleaning services, electrical works and even security services for an RAF museum. It has certainly been varied!

Although not particularly large in terms of the scope of the bid, my most memorable project is still the first one I completed for one of our long-term retention clients, as it was a notable contract for the client. It was a highly collaborative process and I was fully supported by my colleagues and the review team, which I have no doubt contributed to the submission’s success, being awarded the highest score out of all applicants!

Ongoing training and development

Each week our team receives training sessions and toolbox talks delivered by highly knowledgeable colleagues, drawing on their experiences, both within bid writing and outside. These have covered a wide range of topics, from asbestos removal processes to CDM Regulations and BIM Modelling, each of which help to broaden my understanding of the topics and subsequently enhance the quality of my written responses. I look forward to receiving more in the future and really enjoy this aspect of the role.

Advice for other bid writers

Don’t treat writing as a purely solo activity and instead recognise that bid writing is highly collaborative in nature. For our team of consultants, that is collaborating and working with our range of clients, but also with the wider Executive Compass team. For instance, our quality reviewers have a wide breadth of experience and even now I can still draw upon this support in writing bid responses and for ideas and suggestions. This would be my main piece of advice for any other bid writers or those early on in their career – don’t hesitate to ask others in your organisation for support, to share their knowledge or even just to have a fresh pair of eyes.


Since joining the Executive Compass, Ewan has made valuable contributions to our bid and tender writing team. As he has become more experienced, he has started supporting our trainee bid writers, broken down question sets, and navigated complex portals.

If you would like more information on the bid and tender services that we provide, including bid writing, bid review, and bid training courses, our sales and marketing team are available for an informal chat at or 0800 612 5563.

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