From Bid Strategy to Delivery; where does it all go wrong? Part 2

Part 2 

Tenders, Proposals and Bid Management are all part of an organisations Sales pipeline and business processes. It’s one of the elements of bringing in business. It is a multi-billion dollar business worldwide. Organisations today outsource services as a way to reduce costs, leverage off an organisations capability and specialities without the inherent risk, that is with the service provider.

Going out tender usually means that there is a:

  • The requirement to change the current operating model
  • Reorganisations of services
  • Incumbent issues
  • Need to source value for money

There are many other reasons, what we don’t do as customers, is ensure there is a review of the tender before re-issue to ensure current service issues are included so providers can respond to how they will address your issues. I’ll point out some strategies that may help your organisations ensure they are just as ready to go out to tender as Service Providers are. These actions are a start that can help;

Tender review process

Examine the language and your requirements

  • Tenders are often not considered when undergoing a re-issue for re-tendering purposes. The language is also vague, as only some elements of the tender make it into the actual contract. If you’re not specific in your requirements or needs, then typically it’s not delivered, and therefore your needs will not be met again. Your same issues will eventually re-surface. If you don’t change the tender, then don’t expect changes.
  • Also if this is a re-issue, things would obviously change, such as services, operations, infrastructure and so on. It will need a full review. Ideally, address the following questions;
  • What and where are your problem areas.”
  • What are your business service issues?”
  • What are your expectations?
  • What do you need vs. what you want?
    • Do you need an availability plan?
    • Wouldn’t you rather automate requests, services and monitoring?
    • Where is the value? Have a look and map out your current value streams
    • By spelling this out, you are helping your service providers understand your needs. Your operational and managerial staff probably have a list of issues, CSI activities that haven’t been met by your previous service providers.
  • Review these and add them to your tender response questions.
  • It is vital to obtain internal Operational input and feedback to ensure they are engaged and help address all service issues and requirements for the new tender.
  • Establish your teams/areas, break down the areas to be reviewed by the SMEs or engage to help reshape and rework the tender. Breaking up the review across a large group can eliminate this overwhelming and competing task. This also helps with Management and Operational buy-in into the process.
  • If the Operational staff need improvements, then need to invest time to make the tender more specific.
  • Generic questions will receive a generic response
  • Some service provider re-use and rebadge responses from previous tender responses.

Strategy that’s clear as mud!

  • Is the Strategy clear? Quite often Enterprise or Government tenders, it isn’t. It can be confusing and miss critical elements. Or slightly differ throughout the different sections.
  • A 360 looking at all the areas helps immensely. In the various sections, you can then detail what you need, meant by your graphic.
  • Ensure you haven’t missed critical capabilities by developing SoaP, Strategy on a page! Simple and effective information followed by a description of what this means. But please clearly, articulate what each of the SPs will be up for versus what you wish to retain.
  • It is vital to ensure during a workshop to cover all basis. Review, review and then discuss it again. Ask an independent to assist, to ask the hard questions. To help you get you’re Strategy across.
  • Strategic graphics supported by text helps with a visual of where you plan on going on your journey. A clear summary of your vision, your goals and objectives including who will carry out what activities from that vision. A Strategy on a page (SoaP) can help. It provides a visual and a helicopter view of what you wish to achieve with your new partners. See the example below, there are many. Usually helps to have timelines available to show milestones and key activities. Graphics in SoaPs are fantastic for marketing but also helps the OCM team to use and inform and spread the message on what, how and the why we are changing.


Part three will focus on Choosing a partner, how to validate their credentials, contracts and more….

Contact ITSMC to discuss your needs. We can help with a workshop and or help define the review required to get your tenders rights to achieve the desired result