Many businesses operate at a sub-optimal level when submitting a tender.

Win more business with TenderEyes.

Work together to create a better tender

The processes operated when building a major tender response can create a highly pressurised environment. It can require multiple and complex contributions involving hundreds of people, each of whom must provide competitive content to critical deadlines. Every piece of information requires approval and governance.

Tendering Philosophy

We believe that by focusing on seven core competencies an organisation can improve its approach to tender submission and gain tangible benefits – including higher win ratios and lower costs of tendering.

TenderEyes was developed to address and support each of these key tendering competencies with seven software modules which are implemented consecutively. The implementation process has been designed to incorporate any associated business process re-engineering under the guidance of our tendering consultants. This is to ensure maximum return on investment and optimised tendering processes that are embedded throughout the organisation.

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The Seven Core Competencies Fundamental to Successful Tendering

TenderEyes has been designed and developed specifically to address the seven core competencies which are required for successful tendering; to support organisations to develop and nurture these competencies so that they become more successful at winning tenders.

Scroll down for the seven core competencies…

1. Pipeline Management

The identification, rigorous qualification and approval of opportunities.

Pipeline Management

The first core competency fundamental to successful tendering is the identification, rigorous qualification and approval of opportunities.

Each stage of the tendering process carries its own risks.  Our experience gained from managing and advising international businesses about their tendering processes has exposed several risks and opportunities in tender opportunity management.

To ensure the identification, rigorous qualification and approval of opportunities, it is important to have the following best practices as your goal.

Best practice goals…

  • Alignment of any formal procurement codes (CPV codes) with the agreed business strategy.

  • Statistical and evidence-based qualification of opportunities.

  • Effective intra-team communication.

  • Full visibility of relevant information to the entire pursuit team.

  • Focused utilisation of market analysis and market data.

Alignment of tendering codes with business strategy

Significant resources can be misdirected – or wasted – on speculative or brand-damaging tenders that are not fully aligned with business strategy.

Statistical and evidence-based qualification of opportunities

Using mathematical processes to calculate a score or hurdle rate can enable opportunities to be filtered according to their likelihood of success, as opposed to an emotional-based decision, so that resources can be allocated accordingly.

Effective intra-team communication

Successful tendering requires a formal process for the approval of target opportunities, the assignment of the pursuit team and continued executive-level visibility.

Full visibility of relevant information to the entire pursuit team

Pursuit teams cannot be allowed to work in a bubble: they also require full visibility of all operational performance metrics and data relating to the tender proposal.

2. Quality of Information

A central repository of accurate, compelling and easily accessible corporate knowledge

Quality of Information

A central repository of accurate, compelling and easily accessible corporate knowledge.

To submit a successful tender, it can require the combined skills of dozens, if not hundreds, of people within the organisation.  Much of their knowledge may be held locally, or in shared drives, which are indexed in a manner that reflects the expertise of the subject matter expert rather than the immediate requirements of the pursuit team.

Not only must information be up to date, relevant and contextual, it must be easily located by non-specialists.  Clear ownership and feedback mechanisms will ensure knowledge libraries of the highest quality.

To ensure your central knowledge repository has an accurate, compelling and easily accessible knowledge, it is important to have the following best practices as your goal.

Best practice goals…

  • Creation of a knowledge library as a centralised source of information

  • Easy-to-use tools to mine information catalogued in the reference library

  • Effective knowledge feedback loops

  • Aim for continuous improvement of scores from customer evaluation of submitted answers

  • Full visibility of the executive summary, evaluation criteria and the scoring matrix of each tendering opportunity for every member of the pursuit team

Creation of a knowledge library as a centralised source of information

Avoid silos of information and dependencies on key subject matter experts so that already tight schedules and the quality of the formal answer are not compromised.

Easy-to-use tools to mine information catalogued in the knowledge library

Ensure that all members of the pursuit team can find the information they require, without necessarily having the subject matter expertise required to define “the correct” search criteria.

Effective knowledge feedback loops

Ensure that knowledge held in the library is up to date, relevant and contextual by assigning clear ownership and by feeding back any scores from completed tendering processes.

Aim for continuous improvement

Dialogue between subject matter experts, pursuit team members and management will guide continuous quality improvements, avoiding a decrease in quality over time.

Full visibility of the executive summary, evaluation criteria and the scoring matrix of each tendering opportunity for every member of the pursuit team

Seek to support each individual contributor to the tender with all the facts so that answers can be tailored and crafted to the end customers objectives and desires.

3. Rapid Project Set-up

Rapid set-up of a fully resourced and motivated project team.

Rapid Project Set-up

The rapid set up of a fully resourced and motivated project team.

Without clear processes in place, protracted decision making about the allocation of resources can eat into valuable response time – placing greater pressure on the final pursuit team.

When the critical business of winning tenders and securing revenue becomes a burden or is perceived negatively within the business, it can only lead to lower win ratios – causing the business to fall behind sales targets.  This can lead to an increased pressure to bid for more at which point the law of diminishing returns comes into play.

To ensure the rapid set up of a fully resourced and motivated project team, it is important to have the following best practices as your goal.

Best practice goals…

  • Effective delegation of tasks

  • Speedy allocation of resources

  • Plans, workflows and meetings must be maximised

  • Provide the tools to ensure information sharing and engagement

  • Create methodologies for managing multiple bids effectively

  • Don’t allow the tendering process to become a burden

Effective delegation of tasks

Treating each tender as unique doesn’t need to extend to requiring the repeated approval of responsibilities from the senior management team.

Speedy allocation of resources

Delay and protracted decision-making can be a fundamental error when trying to win valuable work in a competitive environment.

Plans, workflows and meetings must be maximised

Bid resources are often fully engaged in the business – and not sitting around waiting for a tender to work on.  By automating common workflows, automatically assigning tasks, providing templated documentation, scheduling fully resourced plans and meetings, the pursuit team is given the maximum amount of time to design, prepare and approve high-quality answers.

Provide the tools to ensure information sharing and engagement

The pursuit team is multi-disciplinary and can sometimes seem remote.   Management isn’t always the answer: effective engagement can eliminate the need for an extra layer of bureaucracy.

Create methodologies for managing multiple bids effectively

Key to the success of managing multiple bids is the engagement and support of subject matter experts and approvers, along with a strong approach to compliance and governance.

Don’t allow the tendering process to become a burden

When compromised deadlines and a lack of information are allowed to become the norm, it can lead to resentment and a lack of support at critical times.

4. Working together

Sharing corporate resources, building resilience, speed and competitiveness.

Working Together

Sharing corporate resources, building resilience, speed and competitiveness.

A business culture which encourages openness, engagement and the sharing of skills and resources has many advantages beyond the tendering process. Although such a culture is also a major source of advantage within the competitive tender process.

How does one build and foster a culture of collaboration within an organisation and in turn use this to profit tender submissions?  Key practices, procedures and tools can be introduced that will support the development and nurturing of such a culture.

To ensure the sharing of corporate resources to build resilience, speed and competitiveness it is important to have the following best practices as your goal.

Best practice goals…

  • Optimise remote resources with a high level of collaboration, information sharing and communication

  • Move quickly and efficiently to provide the right responses

  • Encourage knowledge sharing across disciplines and within peer groups

  • Promote opportunities to up skill and reward individuals who do so

  • Use the tendering process, tender contributions and customer feedback within professional development frameworks

  • Use audit tools to ensure a higher level of compliance and encourage tender process improvement

Optimise remote resources with a high level of collaboration, information sharing and communication

Very few organisations have a corporate-level pursuit team with all the capabilities required to submit a winning tender simply sat together waiting for an opportunity to arrive.  Improving processes for working together can have a huge impact on tender success.

Move quickly and efficiently to provide the right responses

Ensuring that the most-able individuals provide guidance and knowledge is essential in a time-constrained environment.

Promote opportunities to upskill and reward individuals who do so

If the most-able individuals openly share their knowledge and experience other team members can benefit, rapidly upskill and reapply learning to future bids in which they are involved.

Use the tendering process, contributions and customer feedback within professional development frameworks

Develop professional forums where individuals with specific skill sets can share knowledge, experience and tools supporting a culture of openness and sharing. This can in turn improve the contributions that engaged members make to the tender process.  Then ensure that helpful contributions to tenders are recognised within the corporate review and appraisal process.

Leverage audit tools to ensure a higher level of compliance and encourage tender process improvement

The use of workflows, automated meetings and approvals can relieve time pressures on the time-constrained process of tendering and reduce the costs of compliance significantly.

5. Competitive awareness

Detailed understanding of competition to inform decision making.

Competitive Awareness

A detailed understanding of the competition to inform decision making.

Most organisations have significant knowledge and understanding of competitors but these details may only reside with a few people.

Generally, it is one of the key responsibilities of the sales and marketing teams to fully understand the competitive environment in which the business operates.  They must then support the pursuit team by sharing this knowledge.

By capturing all of this information in a centralised knowledge library, it is possible to ensure the necessary information can be shared and accessed as required.  This knowledge library can also then provide benefits in terms of sales or marketing team succession planning and fast-tracking associated induction processes.

To ensure the pursuit team has access to a detailed understanding of the competition that can inform decision making, it is important to have the following best practices as your goal.

Best practice goals…

  • A central repository for all information and knowledge regarding all known competitors

  • Catalogue information in a tiered system

  • Assign an owner and expiry date to each piece of information

  • Enable – or require – the review of information by subject matter experts

  • Make sure that tender response feedback is fed back into the system

  • Tailor responses with regard to the known competition

A central repository for all information and knowledge regarding all known competitors

Facilitate the sharing of critical competitive information that resides within the sales or marketing teams for use by the pursuit team.

Catalogue information in a tiered system

Make it easy for the pursuit team to access the information they require with the use of clear summaries and the ability to drill down into detailed question-specific information.

Assign an owner and expiry date to each piece of information

It is vital to ensure that competitive information, which can change rapidly and dramatically, is kept up to date to ensure it can be optimally exploited by the pursuit team.

Enable – or require – the review of information by subject matter experts

Information collated by the sales and marketing teams should be reviewed not only in terms of accuracy and relevance but also by the appropriate internal subject matter expert.

Make sure that tender response feedback is fed back into the system

At the end of a major competitive tendering process, there is often the opportunity to receive detailed feedback about the tender submission.  This should be used to improve, build on and update competitive information.

Tailor responses with regard to the known competition

Accurate, relevant competitive information should be exploited within a tender response to highlight areas of competitive advantage.

6. Managing partners

Sophisticated integration tools provide a professional image and brand-enhancing delivery.

Managing partners

Sophisticated integration tools provide a professional image and brand-enhancing delivery.

The ability to manage critical business relationships upwards to the customer, downwards to the supply chain and laterally to advisors and support organisations can be a key differentiator.

In our experience, it is increasingly seen by customers as a deciding factor in the award of a contract. This can be seen clearly in the marks awarded for the ability in the evaluation criteria.

To ensure your integration tools provide a professional image and brand-enhancing delivery, it is important to have the following best practices as your goal.

Best practice goals…

  • Be able to demonstrate an integrated supply chain – it is often a key customer requirement

  • Information must flow freely through the supply chain

  • Sub-contractors must be fully engaged

  • The customer perception of a properly managed supply chain needs to be nurtured

  • Manage reputational risk throughout the supply chain

An integrated supply chain is often a key requirement of the customer

The selection, engagement, operation and performance management of the supply chain will be considered when assessing the level of integration throughout the supply chain.

Information must flow freely through the supply chain

The business must negotiate and implement relevant contracts and service level agreements where all risks and commercial terms flow openly through the supply chain layers.

Sub-contractors must be fully engaged

It is ideal if, with the appropriate security in place, sub-contractors can receive tasks, alerts, workflows, and be able to contribute to shared documentation.

The customer perception of a properly managed supply chain needs to be nurtured

For a customer seeking a strategic partner to help deliver major change, it is imperative that they can see an integrated supply chain, not only at a contractual level but also at an operational and even emotional level.  The business must be able to demonstrate evidence of its capacity to deliver this aligned service.

Manage reputational risk throughout the supply chain

During the tender process there is a clearly understood reputational risk with regard to the way the customer is dealt with and provided with information.  What is less apparent to many organisations is that brand and reputational strength can be enhanced through all levels of the supply chain. Good supply chain management enhances the perception of the business as a highly credible organisation.

7. Seamless transition

Seamless transition from contract award to delivery, with a high-quality customer experience and reinforcement of brand messages.

Seamless transition

The seamless transition from contract award to delivery, with a high-quality customer experience and reinforcement of brand messages.

Significant goodwill and enhancement of the brand will have been achieved through the long and difficult process of submitting and negotiating a tender, particularly for winning organisations.  All this hard work and potential reward can be damaged through a clumsy or, worse, incompetent transition phase.

This is one of the highest risk phases of the whole project and often the most visible – both within the organisation and publicly. A great deal of clear communication and hard work need to be undertaken to ensure a professionally managed transition phase.

To ensure a seamless transition from contract award to delivery, with a high-quality customer experience and reinforcement of brand messages, it is important to have the following best practices as your goal.

Best practice goals…

  • Clear communication between business development, the pursuit team and the operational team for the duration of the bid process and handover process

  • A professionally managed transition phase

  • Full documentation must be made available to the operational team

  • Integrate the customer with the processes relevant to service delivery and their management oversight

Clear communication between business development, the pursuit team and the operational team for the duration of the bid process and handover process

Clear communication throughout the process with service delivery teams will avoid any unnecessary “we said what in our tender?” moments.

A professionally managed transition phase

A professional approach to managing the stage boundaries is vital if the customer is to experience a seamless transition.

Full documentation must be made available to the operational team

As well as the documentation libraries that have been developed during the tendering process, the audit trails, meeting notes, clarification questions and responses all need to be properly archived and available. Details of any legal and contractual discussions should also be archived in one place to give the operational team a great head start.  It also enables new and additional members of the operational delivery team to get up to speed quickly and thoroughly.

Integrate the customer with the processes relevant to service delivery and their management oversight

Providing an open and professional management layer with whom the customer can communicate effectively is essential.  The ability to share calendars, alerts, workflows and workspaces can provide an excellent foundation for creating an element of ‘stickiness’ with the customer.

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Used by organisations around the globe…