A short guide to help builders, plumbers, electricians and all other tradespeople write winning tenders
Written By Jason Cooney, Founder & Principal Writer
We often get enquiries from builders, plumbers, electricians and other building industry personnel about how to win more tenders, how to apply for a tender and why they are unsuccessful. Below is a short guide on how to writing winning bids, tenders and proposals for your business. We help businesses win government and private contracts across the UK.
Tailor your bid to your audience
It’s important to tailor your bid or proposal to your audience and provide experience and references that are relevant. For example, if you are bidding for a local government contract to provide plumbing maintenance services, detail on your experience in fulfilling similar contracts is essential. This is particularly important when inputting suitable referees and contract examples as part of your submission. As a result of doing so, you are instilling confidence in the Commissioner that you are capable of successfully delivering the service.
Go into detail where possible to help you win
The RFP, RFQ, or other tender documentation will generally have a series of questions, some of which require a simple response, such as your business name or contact numbers, and others which will require a more detailed response.
For questions asking about experience, methodology and personnel, where you have relevant experience or a methodology to include, it’s important to go into detail. Going into detail will demonstrate that you have the right expertise, that you understand the requirements of the contract, and that you have thought through the opportunity and will allocate the appropriate resources to deliver on the contract.
For example, lets assume you are a locksmith and the client has asked for information regarding your experience in the installation of new locking systems for a university. If you have installed locking systems for two other universities, you could include a short bullet point outlining the two universities you installed locks for. Alternatively, you could, and should go into detail about this experience and outline:
• How many locks were installed.
• Any unique challenges that arose in the project and how you overcame them.
• Outcomes of the project and the time it took you to complete the project.
• Which members of your team were involved in the project.
Write a compelling executive summary
The executive summary for any bid is critical. You need to not only summarise your response, but also put forward the key points of difference that set you apart from your competitors. It’s important to highlight why you should be selected for the contract and how you have the capabilities, resources and expertise to deliver on the project over the term of the contract.
Your executive summary should talk about your team, experience, key differentiators and any value added services you may offer. Take the time to make sure your executive summary is compelling, as sometimes it’s the only document the client will read in detail.
You can read more about effective bid management here.
Comply with the requirements
In a tender process you aren’t able to miss or skip anything. Whether its an insurance requirement, acknowledging you have no conflict of interest, or acknowledging the contract, you need to tick all the boxes and comply with all the requirements. We have seen a fair few companies over the years put forward quality bids and tenders and come unstuck by not answering some of the simply compliance questions. Take the time to work through the tender requirements comprehensively from start to finish.
How we can help
Here at Tsaks Consulting, we provide tender, proposal and bid writing communications services for businesses across the UK including in London, Manchester, Birmingham, Wolverhampton, Leeds-Bradford, Glasgow, Southampton-Portsmouth, Liverpool, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield, Bristol, Belfast and Leicester. We have helped businesses from a range of industries win government and private contracts including:
• Cabinet Makers
• Carpet Layers
• Kitchen Planners and Installers
• Panel Beaters
• Pest Control Businesses