Holiday periods can provide some headaches for bidders. Who will write and manage your bids when key staff are on holiday? We provide 5 helpful suggestions below for bidders below:
1. Always keep a documented pipeline of the bidding and tender opportunities that you are anticipating and when you are expecting to see these come to the market. This doesn’t have to be anything too sophisticated – a Word document or a spreadsheet is fine. Maintaining an up-to-date pipeline will let you identify peak periods of activity and help you to plan and allocate resources accordingly. It is not unusual for the peaks to arise at the same time as holiday seasons come around, so identifying this early will give you time to plan and prepare.
2. Try to plan your team and colleagues’ annual leave so that there is always at least one person in the organisation who can manage and lead on resourcing any bid activity that arises during the holiday season. There is nothing more frustrating than coming back from holiday to find out that you have missed out on a significant business opportunity because no-one was around to pick up a short-notice Request for proposal (RFP) or Invitation to Tender (ITT).
3. If bidding over the holiday season is going to be particularly challenging for you, perhaps as an SME with limited resources, try to make this known to the buyer before they issue their RFP or Tender e.g. through early engagement during your capture planning. In some cases, buyers will be empathetic and allow extended submission timelines or even delay procurements by a few weeks, to ensure that they get the best of the market bidding to them, rather than just those who had the resources available to bid during a busy holiday season.
4. If you have not been able to influence the buyer in advance, don’t be afraid to submit an early request for a deadline extension. You can explain that you are very keen to bid for the opportunity but have limited resources during the holiday season and would welcome a week or two of extra time to spend on a developing a compelling solution for them with your best value pricing proposal. By showing the buyer the benefit (to them) of extending the submission timeline, many buyers will be reasonable and allow an extension.
5. Consider the use of external bid professionals to bolster your bid resource, rather than letting a great business opportunity pass you by. At AM Bid, we have some clients who use us all year round and some who bring us in during peak periods, when they have more bids than they can handle and/or a reduced resource in their bid function due to holiday periods. We can provide a range of bid support to assist you, depending on your needs and circumstances. This professional assistance will not only address your resource challenges, but will also add demonstrable value to your bid and significantly enhance your win probability.
For more information on the support we can provide to help you bid over busy holiday periods, please contact Christine Hornshaw at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 0800 043 0495.