BD tips and insights

What is an eTender and how do you win one?

  • While more tendering means more opportunities for businesses, bear in mind that bidding isn’t risk-free. Your business has one chance to get that bid right.
  • Government Agencies use eTendering systems to convey information about tendering opportunities. It’s a simple, efficient system for both Government and bidders, and helps to ensure transparency and fairness.

What is an eTender and how does your business win one?

An unprecedented number of Government tenders are being released this year, as part of the ongoing COVID-19 economic stimulus programs.

While more tendering means more opportunities for businesses, bear in mind that bidding isn’t risk-free.

Your business has one chance to get that bid right – or you risk losing time, resources and money.

Based on my experience of helping build businesses and business-value, I’ve put together an ‘eTendering 101’ along with some tips to help your business win that Government contract.

eTendering 101

eTendering is tendering that takes place online. Government Agencies use eTendering systems to convey information about upcoming tendering opportunities.

It’s a simple, efficient system for both Government and bidders, and helps to ensure transparency and fairness.

Government eTendering portals or websites allow you to register and be notified about tender opportunities, and to submit an Expression of Interest (EoI). You can also research past tenders, download all relevant eTender documents, track your bid’s progress, and receive notifications of any changes to the tender specs.

Advantages of eTendering to bidders include:

  • A rigid, structured process with plain formats and constraints like word limits. No time is wasted agonising over style and formats, meaning everyone is on a level playing field – including inexperienced bidders.
  • eTendering systems can include mechanisms which make submitting a non-compliant or incomplete bid virtually impossible.
  • Consistently applied scoring and evaluator audit trails, ensuring more trust in the fairness of the process.
  • 24/7 access to online tendering information across dispersed teams.

eTendering is particularly advantageous for SMEs, which are often constrained by lack of resources. The historical tendering process made things even more challenging as information was communicated via various formats, including newspaper ads and hard copy.

From a Government perspective, the advantages of eTendering include more efficient and effective processes, reduced tender cycle time, and automated evaluation allowing for a fairer and more productive process. Greater transparency, increased value for money for taxpayers, and the removal of bias towards bids that promote style over substance.

Top tips for successful eTendering

  • DO articulate your business’s differentiators and show how you’ll deliver value and help meet Government objectives. Remember, Government is looking for value for money and low-risk suppliers.
  • DON’T worry about flair. eTendering has a prescriptive structure so your focus needs to be compliance and differentiation. If allowed, you might be able to exhibit your flair and innovation through case studies.
  • DO pay attention to the detail in the schedule. Review the conditions, scope and form of tender. Make sure nothing is overlooked so your bid isn’t dismissed as ‘non-compliant’.
  • DON’T forget what the Government Agency is looking for: ROI, successful track records, resource allocation, business stability and financial integrity, as well as value for money.

At Julian Midwinter & Associates, we work with businesses to set them up to win. If you’re interested in finding out how our cutting-edge expertise and experience can help your business in the eTendering process, reach out here, or check out our Win Now Clinic or Blueprint Clinics, which could help you with a tender you’re working on now.

If you or your team need a hand on a eTender, why not get in touch, we can help.

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