Tender writing, also known as bid writing and as proposal writing, is the process of writing a response to a request for tender or a request for a proposal.
What is a request for tender or request for proposal?
A request for tender, or a request for proposal, is issued when an organisation, including government, is seeking an external provider for a particular project or for a one-off or ongoing service or product.
The request for tender will include a document describing what the organisation is seeking, information on the tender process (closing date for submissions, how the tender must be submitted, contact for queries), the scope of works, the draft contract, plus very often, the response schedules.
The response schedules must be completed by the tenderer and submitted to the organisation that has issued the request for tender. This is their ‘tender’. Not all requests for tender or proposals have response schedules. However, most do.
What does the tender writer do?
Tender writing is the responsibility of the tender writer. This the person who completes the response schedules. The tender writer drafts the responses to the questions in the response schedules, making sure to address the selection criteria set out in the tender information and to demonstrate that the tenderer can fulfil the scope of works.
In some companies, particularly smaller ones, the person responsible for tender writing or bid writing is also responsible for collating all information from subject matter experts and previous tenders, as well as managing the whole tender response process to make sure that the tender is submitted on time. In other, usually larger, organisations, managing the tender response process, including managing the tender writer, is the responsibility of a bid manager or tender manager, or even a business development manager.
Tender writing is part of business development
Tender writing is important for business development. There are countless companies that rely on winning tenders to secure contracts and revenue. Yet for other companies, submitting tenders is just one element of their business development.
Either way, tender writing or bid writing requires the bid or tender writer to create a compelling tender response that answers all the questions, stays within any word count limits, and complies with all other requirements. This usually includes attaching insurance certificates.
Using an external tender writer
Many companies choose to use the skills of external professional tender writers such as Proof Communications. There are a lot of benefits to working with experts, as you can find out here.