Bidding for Tenders?

Fabian Kempter
3 min readFeb 6, 2019


A tender, to simplify, is a response made by a supplier to a particular ‘invitation to tender’ by clients either from the private or the public sector. To respond to a tender means to express the intent to make a quote for a particular job or project opportunity that is available.

Bigger contracts require more formal tender responses to be able to secure the project that is relevant to your business. For example, contracts from the public sector have specific steps to follow in the whole tendering process to be able to respond to the ‘invitation to tender’ correctly.

Ready to ‘respond to a contract’?

  • Analyse the bid documents. Review and analyse the bid documents whether your business can fit the required work done for a particular contract. Can your business match the technical skills required to succeed? Do you have a good amount of experience to have it done as ordered? Having a clearer understanding of the work expected will help you gain more insights as to how much work and experience is required for a particular job.
  • Is there a cost to prepare for this bid? Ask yourself if you can afford the costs incurred in bidding for the contract. Review the numbers to check if the costs will justify the entire monetary value of the project to your business.

Still confused on how to write a tender response?

Winning a bid, in itself, requires experience in responding correctly to tenders.

Here are ways on how NOT TO WIN a contract:

  1. Presenting too many packages
    Presenting too many packages could not only confuse a client but it could also talk about your inexperience as a subcontractor in the business. Break down your services logically and rationally as best as possible. If the contract is a match to your business, then you can custom it into packages that can benefit your clients most. With this, your potential client will have questions that will be low to none, ensuring yourself a chance to win it.
  2. Poorly written and inaccurate costings
    Writing a tender response requires a keen eye. As you present the tender pricing document for review, always ensure that your costs are consistent from top to bottom. Research for the current pricing of the other subcontractors in the market, and set your prices in the mid-level range to optimise your potential to win.
  3. Writing a tender response in an incorrect format
    If you are still new to writing a tender response, it would be best to get training and attend workshops to familiarise yourself in writing tender responses. This is very critical as incorrect formatting can get your submissions disqualified, or worse, penalised. Always be keen and meticulous to avoid formatting mishaps.
  4. Misinformation and Missing information
    The ability to understand a particular invitation to tender in its full course: requirements of the project or client, specific needs, et cetera, is very crucial in writing tender responses. Always review the invitation to tender and the documents necessary in order to provide the best information that you can to win a bid. Show your excellence in attention to detail by making sure all documents and paperwork needed in a submission is complete, without spelling and grammar errors, and is completely signed as required.
  5. Not meeting the deadline for submission
    Being late in submitting a tender response will automatically disqualify you of the opportunity to make a bid. Do your best to make it on time. Always.

Getting ready to make a bid by a tender response can sometimes be overwhelming. However, you can always overcome this by constantly practising tender response writing and submitting. Allowing your work to be reviewed will help you gain experience which will enhance your skills that will eventually develop your expertise in writing tender responses. Never miss another tender opportunity again.



Fabian Kempter

General Manager for TenderSearch Australia with over 35 years of experience in providing tender notifications, bid management, and eProcurement services.