Any business serious about putting in the best tender bid they possibly can needs to look closely at their bid management strategy. All too often it’s left to just one individual to bring the whole thing together, assuming they don’t succumb to exhaustion prior to submission. Smart businesses, on the other hand, improve the quality of their tenders – and their chances of success – by creating a Bid Management Team. Here are the four key areas to consider.
In essence, the bid manager acts as a project manager, choosing the core team, allocating responsibilities and ensuring everyone understands the true meaning of the word “deadline”. There’s nothing to stop a bid manager also being a tender contributor, and many do. However, exercise care if considering this dual role as, depending on the size of the bid, the challenges of managing everyone else at the same time can be considerable.
A key point to remember here is that the bid manager must be given the authority to chase up anyone in the core team – even those higher up the management chain – if contributions aren’t forthcoming as they should. And they should be able to do so without fear of repercussions.
The duties of this group include evaluating the tender to gain a crystal clear understanding of what’s required and the formulation of a unified response strategy. Once that’s been agreed, the core team also needs to identify who is best placed to provide the answers, including the proposed solution and pricing details.
Clearly, there may be a number of individuals involved in each of the tender’s sections, and some people may be required to contribute across tasks. Again, the bid manager needs to be on top of who’s doing what and ensuring the whole process moves on apace.
Usually a mix of external and internal resources, support for your tender may come from a whole variety of places. Your suppliers, your bank, your own HR department, your accountant, specialist advisors – these are just some of the resources you may call upon for crucial tender input. You’ll get a good idea of who you’ll need to call upon at the tender evaluation stage, so it’s a wise move to get in touch early to let them know you’ll be depending on their contribution. And, of course, the bid manager will need to follow up, if needed.
Proof Reader/Copy Editor
The importance of submitting an error-free, clearly written tender cannot be underestimated. Best undertaken by someone who has had no input in terms of content, their fresh eyes can pick up errors and inconsistencies, and can edit where necessary to really bring points home. Engaging a professional proof reader to do this is considered by many to be a wise investment. Above all, it gives your finished submission a professional polish. And that one fact alone will put you ahead of much of the competition.