Online tenders – The Way of Bidding in the Future?

Web sites that offer the opportunity of finding online tenders are becoming increasingly popular. In the the past, companies had to seek out Invitations To Tender (ITT’s) directly from the company, from weekly and monthly publications, from newspapers or on company websites.

Now they can just monitor a couple of web sites and all the online tenders are there. Most of the tendering web sites have sophisticated searching faculties making finding the ideal tender quick and easy. Most of them will email you with potential ITT’s using your own bespoke search terms.

These web sites are usually grouped by government and non government projects. Both are equally popular with expansion hungry companies.

This ease of finding ITT’s can also be a disadvantage. Many companies suffer from an overload of potential but not appropriate ITT’s until they learn to really fine tune their search criteria. Others never seem to find their ideal online tenders!

Once you have found your ideal ITT, you must remember that hundreds of other companies have found this ITT just as easily so your competition has massively grown from a few years ago.

Needless to say, you have found your ITT and because you are one of many that has also found it and will bid for this project, your tender writing skills need to be very good.

Companies have found that when they issue an ITT on one of these web sites, they receive a considerable number of inappropriate and poorly written tenders. Evaluating tenders is a time consuming and expensive process, so ITT issuing companies are now issuing Pre Qualifying Questions (PPQ’s) that are very long and complex.

These PQQ’s are designed to remove any companies that are bidding because they found the ITT, but are clearly inappropriate for the project.

As web sites that allow bidding companies to easily find online tenders flourish, complex and difficult PQQ’s will continue to become the business norm.

There are also a group of web sites that offer online tenders called reverse auctions. On these web sites companies place their work to be completed and sellers bid directly on the web site for any work. Currently these web sites only manage smaller size projects, but there is definitely room for growth in this area.

It may be that in a few years time, a company will find online tenders and then be asked to produce their PQQ directly on the site. This can then be quickly reviewed and the winning companies offered the right to complete a full tender for the work.


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