With a new year on the horizon, many of us are thinking about setting new year’s resolutions and goals for 2022. If you’re looking ahead to 2022 tenders, here are a few things that you should keep in mind.
If 2022 will see you trying your first tender we have a few resources that might help you:
- Our SME Academy is fully-funded bid and tender training
- And we offer a scholarship program where we work with a new MSME or VCSE each month to give them two days of free support.
- Our blog ‘Can New Businesses Win Tenders’
Are you Ready?
To win tenders, you need to be able to prove that you do a good job. That usually involves some combination of references, case studies, certifications, insurances, and financial proof. Do you have all this in place? If you don’t, you’ll need to get that assembled before you try.
To help you understand what is needed to support winning 2022 tenders, we run regular (free) ‘Get Bid Ready in Five Days‘ challenges to guide you through the process.
Choosing the Right Tenders
Finding tender opportunities is as simple as going to Contracts Finder or Find a Tender, and searching for your industry, but just because you can apply for a tender doesn’t mean you should. We see a lot of small businesses making the mistake of taking a scattergun approach, bidding for anything and everything that looks like it might be a match, even if you have to squint to see it.
Just remember that you’re not tendering in isolation – every opportunity will see other businesses pursue it too, and if some of them are better placed than you to deliver, then you’re wasting your time and money if you try with little chance of winning 2022 tenders.
Likewise, if you’re a high-quality service then you probably won’t win a tender than is 70% price based as you’re likely to be offering bells and whistles they’re not interested in. Instead, look for tenders that have a higher quality element. If you’re a low-cost business, then the opposite applies.
The next step is to have a really thorough read (or two) of the tender documents to make sure that you fully understand what you are expected to deliver and what the terms and conditions are. Can you deliver everything the client wants? Are there any penalty clauses? All of this needs to be factored into your bid/no-bid decision.
Resource Your Tender
We know that for a lot of smaller businesses, tenders are something that the business owner or sales manager fit in in their ‘spare time’ around the day-to-day running of the business. Even in larger businesses, making sure that whoever is responsible for bidding has enough time to do a thorough job of responding to the tender is vital. As is getting anyone else who needs to contribute to the tender onboard; will your QS get the pricing information ready in time? Will the project manager have time to brief the bid team on the technical details?
And if you’re going to be working with a freelance bid writer or a consultancy like us, make the call to ensure they have the resources to support you first. If you’re going to have a try at DIY, make sure there is resource if you need a Plan B. While there was a time when we could take last-minute bids for clients, we are so busy these days that we need as much notice as possible to be sure we can support our clients, and we’re probably not the only consultancy with such a pleasant problem!
Learn from the Process
One important part of driving improvement in your tender process is to make sure that you have a debrief after the tender has been submitted (after the celebration!) to talk about what went well and what could be improved. Try and do this before the result is published; it’s easy to assume you did everything right if you win, but there is always room for improvement. After the result is published you will get feedback from the buyer, so make the most of that to improve.
Call for Help With 2022 Tenders
If you really want to make the most of 2022 tenders, then we’d be happy to help. Whether you need support to build a pipeline of tenders for the year (and beyond) or just some pointers on where you can improve your scores, we will work flexibly with you to give you the support you need to make 2022 an incredibly successful year for you. Get in touch today to set up a meeting.