Expert guide to preparing for the tender writing process

Whether you have been in business for a while or have recently established your business, writing a tender requires you to pull together a lot of information and spend considerable time in the tender preparation. However, tenders do present valuable opportunities to win new work for your organisation so the investment is worthwhile.

Here we are sharing useful tips to effectively prepare for your tender writing process.

Evaluate tenders

Each year the Australian Government spends approximately $70 billion a year on contracts. These contracts are published on AusTender. The states also spend significant amounts with the NSW Government, for example, spending about $15 billion in 20221-22. NSW etendering is important in finding tenders in NSW.

You’ll come across many lucrative tenders across many sectors, but that doesn’t mean every tender is suitable for your organisation. Before you proceed with your tendering process, it’s crucial to evaluate each tender you are considering.

  • Do you have the necessary capabilities?
  • Will you be able to complete the tender on time?
  • Do you have the required experience?
  • What are your chances of winning the tender?

Answering such questions will help you determine if a tender is worth your time.

Understanding tender preparation requirements

Once you have assessed the tender as being suitable and being a good match for your capabilities you need to identify all the information that you need to assemble. Carefully go through the requirements and analyse what is being asked for.

We also suggest that you undertake a strategic evaluation as part of your tender preparation to inform the branding and key messaging of your proposal. Looking into the political, environmental, social and technological aspects can give you an edge over other competitors.

Attending the tender briefing

Make sure you attend the tender briefing. Sometimes this can be mandatory—if you don’t attend you may not be eligible to tender. The tender briefings are very important particularly if they on the site of a construction project, for instance. It is an opportunity to talk directly with the client. It is also important in finding out who your competitors are.

Clearing up unknowns and inconsistencies

Often with tender documents there are gaps in the specification or ambiguous requirements. To clear up any uncertainties during tender preparation you can send requests for information (RFIs) to the client. The answers to the RFIs are published by the client as addendums which they will make available to all the tendering organisations (that is you and your competitors).

Creating a writing schedule

Managing time is critical in writing a tender proposal. All your hard work will go to waste if you’re unable to submit the proposal on time. We recommend creating a writing plan with clear roles and responsibilities, and managing deadlines very closely to stay on track.

Managing the team

Bid management is about project managing the tender team. This means, that like all management tasks, good communications and leadership are important in getting people to work together to deliver the best output and outcome in your tender preparation.

Importance of tender management skills

There is plenty of government business out there! A well-written and professionally presented tender will make your business stand out and improve your odds of winning a high-value contract. If you lack the skills in-house it is a good investment to involve tender experts.