Just answer the questions with responses that get maximum scores
Tenders and bids are used to award very high value contracts in both public and private sectors. The client’s Invitation To Tender (ITT) consisting of many questions often with a detailed scoring scheme.
Industries where the submission of tenders or bids are common include, construction, management consultancy, facilities management, health and social care, information technology, nuclear, outsourcing, rail, telecommunications, utilities and waste management.
There are three critical elements to writing a winning tender or bid
- Answer the questions in the Invitation To Tender (ITT)
- Make it simple for the assessor to follow and easy to understand
- Plan your response around the scoring scheme
Put yourself in the place of the person assessing the bid or tender
Putting yourself in the assessor’s place. Where would you start? You’d read the question and highlight the key words and phrases, and do the same for the scoring scheme.
You would then skim-read the response looking for those words and phrases. If you found them you would assume it answered the question and a high score was in order. You would then read more carefully the text beneath the key words and phrases to decide how high a score.
If you didn’t find those words and phrases you would assume the question hadn’t been answered and a low score was appropriate. Remember the assessor will have a big workload with lots to read over and above their day job. So if it’s hard for them to find the answers they are looking for they will move quickly on to your competitor’s tender or bid.
4 steps to creating a perfect answer plan
- Carefully read the question and the scoring scheme, several times, from the assessor’s perspective
- Using a highlighter pen pick out the key words and phrases within the question and the scoring scheme
- Use the highlighted words and phrases to create the sections and sub-sections within the writing plan
- Allocate a word count to each section, this is particularly important if there is a tight word or page limit
You now have a writing plan that answers the question in a way that will quickly lead the assessors to the key information they want.