Bidding / tendering for projects can be an exhausting task but is necessary in every contracting business to keep the doors open.
Niall Brennan from LiveCosts.com shares his top 5 tips for winning your next project.
- Does it Suit
With bidding it can be tempting to bid on everything. However, that isn’t a winning strategy for most companies. It’s always important to know whether or not the potential project will work for your company.
Have you made a profit on this project type before, what areas could we improve on if we win this bid, can we work with the clients or main contractor.
While most projects choose the lowest bidder, your company also has to be able to make a profit. Assess how the contract would affect your other work, staffing and ability to take on other business that’s maybe more profitable. Bidding on the right project at the right time can be so important for the health of your company.
- Be Prepared
The preparation of your bid can rely on valuable time from multiple people, so it’s important that the planning goes into it. Not only can this avoid forgetting anything, but an effective plan can be used as a template moving forward.
First, create an in-house library or catalogue of key tendering information. This would include staff CVs, company background data, financial information, insurance policies, certificates. In other words, the things that are asked for in just about every tender !
So there’s no confusion over responsibility or deadlines, the creation of a timeline is a useful tool. It goes without saying that this should be reviewed regularly and sent to everyone involved in the preparation of the tender bid.
- Research & Contact
The first step to winning a bid, quotation or tender is research. And the first place to start when doing research is the tender document. The more you know about the client and their requirements, the better your final response will be.
In order to gain a clearer understanding of a potential client’s requirements, you could try to arrange a meeting or have a telephone conversation with them before you start work on the tender.
This shows your interest in the project goes beyond just filling out numbers on a page. You should always raise questions in writing if tender documents are unclear, on any issue from contract deadlines to how you’d get paid.
- Showcase your Experience
The architect or general contractor or client lays out the work that needs to be done, and you know that your team is perfect for the job. However, they don’t necessarily know that. By showcasing your team’s qualifications and experience, you help set yourself apart from other companies.
The qualifications of your team and your company are as important as the price of labour, materials, and time. With any bid, many of the bidders will be just slightly lower or higher. That’s why your qualifications and your ability to prove experience on previous projects just might give you an advantage.
- You can’t win them all
As they saying goes, you can’t win them all! A decent success rate for tenders is 1 in 3, so you’ll need to get used to missing out from time to time. However, you can use the experience to turn your next bid into a winning combination.
Show an interest if you lose the tender to try and gather useful feedback as to how you could improve your process to be successful the next time. This is a good exercise to network at the same time for similar up-coming tenders.