When competing for a governmental tender, it becomes quite hard to secure it mainly if you are operating a small business. Below are tips to get a government tender hustle free.
Most government sectors are more comfortable dealing with public corporations which they are sure will deliver other than dealing with a startup that might not do a stand-up job after they get the tender.
The government of Kenya has set aside 30 per cent of all government tenders for the youth, women and persons with disabilities. What this means is that the youth now more than ever need to take advantage of these opportunities.
This opportunities, however, remain elusive to most youth as they lack information of how to win the tenders.
Also Read: Facts about bid bonds and how they work
Tips to get a government tender
1. Get prepared
Before you apply for any tender, you need to get ready. This means that you need to research the background of the institution, its past financial statements, how long and how they pay for tenders among other tendering information.
In case you are to bag the tender, you should also consider checking the information they require from you.
For most tenders, you need to bid at a fee, and this only means that you should inquire about the cost required for the tender.
The bidding fee is always non-refundable, and application without it may result in an automatic cancellation.
Preparing an excellent portfolio as well as company financial statements and past tenders if any can give you a much head start on the bidding process.
You also need to familiarise yourself with the exact date and time when bids are open.
Getting prepared also entails making sure you know the exact date and time when all bids will be opened.
2. Follow tender instructions
Tender response forms have a stringent word limit as well as questions geared towards seeking ideal responders.
Just make sure you read, understand all instructions before you set pen to paper.
3. Provide accurate details
Often companies will ask for your insurance details, pricing tables, and intellectual property rights.
The government may not explicitly ask for materials such as your company profile, capability statement, any proposed changes to conditions, and contracts but note that this is also important for a robust bidding process.
4. Do not relent to spend some cash
The tender process I must admit is quite expensive, you will need to have your finances right if you want to go through with the bidding process.
You will need to spend on tender documents, advertising your company or preparing to present your bid and this is just part of the spending process.
Bureaucracy is one of the issues you will need to expect during this tendering process, as this is a governmental institution.
For you to go through this process, you will to exercise patience many governmental institutions will pre-qualify annually or bi-annually thus you might take time before realising the profits from tendering.
This, however, should not stop you from biding and following up on the whole process.
5. Special tenders
Some of the tenders are suited for specific groups of suppliers so this might either the youths, Women or persons with disability.
The government sometimes offers a 30 per cent grant, and this can be accessed by registering under the access to Government Procurement Opportunities (AGPO).
If you incorporate these groups of citizens in your company, it might help you secure the tenders which are less competitive and more accessible to get access to all the same.
6. Complete the document in full
You will need to compete for the forms in total. This is a vital part of the process.
If you feel anything is unclear, you will need to request for relevant information that will assist you in filling in the tender process.
7. Do your research
You need to know your prospective client before you make any contact, do thorough research.
Find out about the company’s market organisation team and affairs.
If you are well connected, you should use your network to gain relevant insights.
8. Tips to get a government tender: Collaboration
If you are a small business, you might consider collaborating with another small business to double your odds. This might help you secure the tender with more ease.
Getting out a part of the tender is also better than losing the whole tender all the same.
Another way to secure a tender is to state that you will use subcontractors as part of the delivery process. This will only show them that you are well prepared to service the tender once you get it.
9. Consider your Unique Selling Point (USP)
Every company needs to have something unique about them, and this is usually communicated through the company or product tagline.
Companies usually look for bidders who are trustworthy, innovative as well as a company which has done thorough research.
This needs to be research that sets you apart from your competitors.
The main point of differentiation is all about distinguishing how your services positively differ to those of your competitors.
10. Tips to get a government tender: Keep bidding
You should never give up on bidding even if you fail to bag a tender. This might sound like a cliché, but all the same is very accurate. Do not lose hope; keep bidding.
You also need to exercise a lot of patience as the process might take a lot of time as most government offices have a lot of bureaucracy and protocol that you cannot hurry through.
With persistence, however, you will, for sure secure a bid.
In this process, you might get to experience challenges such as corruption. However, this is quite lower as the Public Procurement Oversight Authority (PPOA), has made sure that public tendering meet the required standards.
Also Read: How to get an AGPO certificate
Tips to get a government tender from a procurement official
- You need to always go through the bid documents carefully.
- Always make sure your documents are completed in full.
- A proper cost analysis needs to be done when calculating your bid prices. A bid calculated either too high or low will be considered unresponsive.
- You need to inquire about the bid and get all the relevant information before completing the tender document.
- If you were unsuccessful in the bidding process, feel free to ask about why you failed. With that information, you will learn from the mistakes made.
- Meet all requirements within the specified time, in the event your bid is successful, honour it.
- Do not offer any false information or misinterpretations in your bid documentation, and it is highly illegal and enforceable by law.
- Make sure you deliver on quality services and products as this will improve your track record and right standing with the department and by extension, give a proper face to small businesses in general.