As a company we never use copy and paste when writing tenders as it does not create the strongest possible response. However, many businesses writing their own tenders find that it saves time and they are comfortable with reusing old material.
So, because of this we have put together a guide for the correct use of copy and paste, allowing you to still produce original, winning responses.
First of all, it is very important to use caution when reusing old responses. In no circumstances should you copy and paste a full response into a new tender and submit it untouched.
The key to successfully reusing responses is having a strong working bid library. Here you can store model answers and case studies that are applicable to a wide range of contracts and questions.
Be careful to check where the original response came from, and whether it was the same contracting authority. Remember that the evaluator will be looking for this sort of thing.
How to adapt
As mentioned you should not be submitting full responses without adapting them. The key to using copy and paste is to only pluck out small details and reword the answer so it becomes relevant to the current submission.
The best place to start is to only use responses from similar questions. Search your bid library for a relevant response and highlight the applicable information. Ensure that all the facts are up to date and replace the evidence sections if they are now old and irrelevant.
Tailor the copied response to the new question by writing a new introduction and conclusion to the answer. As you go through you will naturally find yourself re-writing the answer and it will become more of an original piece.
In many cases this process results in strong unique responses as more research is conducted.
As with every submission another team member familiar with the process should carry out a review. They need to look out for repeat phrases that are irrelevant to the specific question and highlight any areas of blatant copy and paste.
If you have adapted correctly then this will not be an issue. A review in this scenario is especially important to ensure the best possible submission.
NOTE: We do advise companies not to rely on copy and paste as it can weaken the submission. However, we do acknowledge certain situations where it is acceptable if done correctly as instructed in this article.
For more advice on completing a tender, watch the video below: