5 steps to successful tendering
Helping our clients win work is one of our favourite things to do! Rebecca has been involved in some of Australia’s largest and most complex tender submissions for operations and maintenance, road, rail, ferries, power supply upgrades and major water treatment projects. Over the years she’s seen it all – wins, losses and everything in between. Below she has provided her top five tips for delivering a successful tender submission:
1. A ‘one team’ approach is the best team approach. These days most major projects are delivered as joint ventures or PPPs. As always, it comes down to leadership. Teams who haven’t attempted to merge together and develop a united identity really struggle from the start. It quickly becomes clear which JV teams are simply not on the same page. My clients who invest time and resources in developing a unified team generally become winners. It can be difficult, especially with short timeframes, but I strongly believe a winning formula involves a dedicated and experienced bid manager, clear responsibilities, a set of robust systems to communicate across teams, taking time to get to know each other and a set of shared goals that are developed as an entire team.
2. A dedicated tender team is a winning tender team. Too often I have tried to work with a subject matter expert who is doing their day job while also attempting to throw together a tender schedule for a major project in their spare time. Most times they end up failing at both.
3. Make it original. Cutting and pasting from previous submissions is a lazy way to develop a response – and it stands out. My clients who invest in tender resources (strategy/management/writing/SMEs) are often the most successful ones because they truly understand the requirements and tailor a submission based on the specifics of each project.
4. Understand who your competition is. What are their strengths and weaknesses? Can you offer something unique that will differentiate you to your competition? Once you know who they are, then it’s time for your team to focus on your solution and all that it will offer.
5. Understand who is going to be reading your responses. So, you know who you are up against, but do you know who will be reading and assessing your submission? What are their drivers? What is their understanding of your subject area? Understand this and your response will hit the mark every time.