Specialist bid managers and bid writers to help you win more without burning out your team
Whether you already have a dedicated bid team, or just some overworked sales and marketing staff, there is a limit to how many bids you can respond to and how much time and effort you can put into it. Customers tend to release bids when it suits them, not you. Also the quality of your bid documents will depend on who writes them – hiring someone who specialises in bids and tenders will improve the quality and your chance of winning. Call us to speak to a specialist about providing bid and tender experts to work in your team anywhere in Australia or NZ.
What can a bid manager do for me?
Sometimes the issue is not just not winning, it’s bidding for too many things you can never win. This means your team is spending its time on unwinnable bids and tenders, instead of putting their focus on the ones you can win. A bid manager can help you set up an objective bid/no-bid decision process, to provide more focus.
Get internal contributors together
A major part of a bid manager’s job is to manage the bid as a project. This means convincing people to deliver contributions and reviews on time.
Run review meetings
Don’t leave your bid or tender review until just before submission: get input at multiple stages to improve both the strategy and the execution of the bid long before it’s too late. A bid manager will help you set up and run multiple ‘colour review’ meetings throughout the process.
Plan for your post-bid presentation
Ideally your presentation should use the same themes as your bid, and should be rehearsed thoroughly. A bid manager can help you do this, and will also help you come up with a set of likely customer questions, and your best answers.
Help you develop a bid strategy
Why should the customer choose you? If you can’t answer that question, maybe you shouldn’t be bidding on this opportunity. A bid manager will help you refine and document your bid strategy so that it informs both your bid content (particularly your Executive Summary) and your post-bid presentation.
Set the theme for the bid
Having a strategy is all very well, but unless you have the mechanisms to message that strategy, it’s pointless. A bid manager will show you how to create theme statements and other elements that influence both the reader, and your internal contributors, while writing tenders.
What can a bid writer or tender writer do for me?
Edit contributor materials to make them consistent
Not everyone writes in the same way, and it’s important (particularly with small bids) to have a consistent ‘voice’ throughout the document. A bid or tender writer experienced in bid writing can do this for you. So with multiple contributors, you need tender writing help.
Write a compelling Executive Summary
Often the Executive Summary is the only part of your bid or tender document that senior decision-makers actually read. Making sure it’s compellingly written and presents your bid themes is something a bid writer can help with.
Write a better technical response
Technical bid writers, like any professional writers, write for a living. They write better than your other staff, and they write more quickly. They’ve also helped respond to bids and tenders, often across multiple industries, and have a wealth of experience to draw on as part of their tender writing services.
Why use a bid manager?
Bid strategy can help you win
If you don’t know why the customer should choose you, they probably won’t. A bid strategy can (and should) be developed long before the bid is actually released, and will set the tone for your whole response. A bid manager can help with this.
Take the pressure off existing staff
If your bids are being shoehorned into the daily tasks of your sales and marketing team, you can hardly expect them to do their best work on them. Bring in external tender writing support to do a better job because they can focus on the task at hand.
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Frequently asked questions
A bid manager is a project manager who specialises in managing bids and tenders.
Bid managers can help drive all aspects of a bid, including:
- Bid/no-bid decision
- Strategy development
- Bid planning
- Bid writing coordination
- Tender writing process
- Scheduling and running colour reviews
- Liaising with senior management
- Planning and rehearsing post-bid presentations
Bids and tenders are known by any number of different names including:
- Request for Tender (RFT)
- Request for Quotation (RFQ)
- Request for Information (RFI)
- Approach to Market (ATM)
- … and many more
Often a customer will even issue an Expression of Interest (EOI) before the final bid, just to cut down the number of bidders.
The important thing to remember about these is that the process of responding to them is the same, no matter what they’re called. And they’re all equally important.
In fact, the same process can be used for grant applications as well.
A bid manager is a project manager, and needs the same skills and attributes that a project manager needs:
- Ability to motivate others
- Ability to manage large amounts of detail
- Ability to interact effectively with senior management
… and in addition needs knowledge of the bid and tender process.
The cost of bid management services will depend on a number of factors including the length of the engagement, the location (sometimes all of the work can be done remotely), the particular expertise you require, and who’s available at the time. Typical rates from HCi are $150-250/hr plus GST for a bid manager, $150-200/hr for a tender writer.
You do. We provide the people, but you as the client are totally in charge of what they do.
Bid strategy should be developed before the bid is released. But even if you have that in hand, it’s a good idea to hire a bid manager at least a couple of weeks before bid release, just so they can get your team organised. Remember also that you may need the bid manager for post-bid processes like BAFO and presentations; certainly you’ll need them for the entire period between bid release and when the bid is due.
Call us. We currently have over 700 on our database, and we can often have perfectly-matched resumes to you within the hour.
We provide Bid Writers in: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra (ACT), Adelaide, Perth, Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.
Rates for Bid Writers vary according to experience and capability. Specialists (eg writers who need experience in particular industries) are often more expensive per hour than non-specialists.
Our clients normally need one or more writers for periods between a week to six months. A longer engagement usually means a lower hourly rate. The rate that we give you for a particular person will be inclusive of all taxes, superannuation, insurance, except GST.
Generally, more experienced writers cost more per hour, but tend to be more productive, so may reduce your budget overall.