Writing and winning bids is an important part of gaining new business. A good pitch can be the deal breaker so it’s important to get it right. Here we’ve put together a few simple tips to enable you to maximise your outcomes when writing your bids.
Pick and Choose Carefully.
All too often, businesses will bid for things they’re not yet experienced in or ready to take on. By not doing appropriate research prior to the bid, companies can waste a huge amount of both time and resources.
How to avoid this? In the first instance, make sure you’re choosing the right contracts to bid for. As a general rule, only bid for a contract with a value that is one third of your annual turnover. Make sure you’re compliant and have enough experience to be able to take on the job. You will then be able to work your ‘Bid-Hit Ratio’ so you can better forecast your success rate in the future.
Always research and be prepared. Be ready to bid as soon as you see the right opportunity pop up. Thoroughly research the project, the company, your competitors in the area and the contracting authorities. What can you offer that your competitors can’t? How can you separate your application from the rest of the pack?
Follow the specification and put your best foot forward.
Once you’ve selected your bid, it’s important to make sure you play by the rules. Much like doing exams in school, remember to read the questions thoroughly. Are there any given guidelines? What supporting documents do you need? Keep in mind things like word count and fonts. If you can’t see any stylistic guidelines, this is a great opportunity to make your business stand out amongst other applicants. It might be a nice opportunity for you to showcase your branding and really give the contracting authority a better sense of who you are.
Make sure you don’t waste your time with irrelevant information. If you’ve done the research before starting the application, you should have plenty of relevant points to support your work (it’s worth remembering the old technique of point, example, explain!). Highlight all the relevant things your business can provide towards the success of the project. Use an active tone of voice so people know you’re ready for action.
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Review, review, review!
Once your application is complete, make sure to check, check and check again. Ask other members of your team to go through it with a fine tooth comb. That way, you’re sure to find any niggly grammar or spelling mistakes or any points you might have missed. After all, this document needs to be representative of everything you and your business have to offer. Request feedback, analyse where improvements can be made and action them quickly. After that, it’s all about having the confidence to press send.
Writing and submitting bids can be a time consuming process, so it’s worth making sure it’s worth your time and resources. After a few successful applications, you’ll build up a healthy library of documents you can draw on in the future. A future where when you bid, you win.