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    Common Bid Related Jargon – Busted

    Common Bid Related Jargon – Busted

    By Louise Lewis, May 24th 2016

    Many people are confused about the concept of bidding for work and with European Union legislation being in force suppliers are increasingly required to enter into a pre-contract competition in order to win work via written submissions.

    You need particular skills to be able to write a winning bid, the right attitude and skills are essential if you’re going to participate successfully in bid competitions. Weigh everything up and consider whether the work is deliverable, winnable and profitable.

    A bid is a formal process, with competitors involved, and a proposal may lead to a contract or an order.
    Being given instructions from the buyer in the form of a tender document you follow them to create your bid. The bid tells the buyer what a supplier can do to meet the stated requirements, and how much they will charge to do the work.

    Three of the most common terms are tender, bid and proposal.

    An Expression of Interest (EOI) is often the first step in the bid process, buyers asking suppliers to let them know if they’re interested in receiving further information.

    Then a Pre-qualification Questionnaire (PQQ) or Request for Information (RFI) is issued by the buyer asking for all information on finance and experience, in the main.

    Once the PQQ has been submitted, it will be evaluated against the buying authority’s scoring criteria. The PQQ stage lets the buyer know that you are qualified to fulfil the needs of the contract. If you are successful at this stage, you will be notified and, in some cases, given an Invitation to Tender (ITT).

    An ITT is a formal document issued by a buyer that sets out the requirements for that opportunity. The ITT is a formal communication from a public sector organisation to a supplier inviting it to submit a full tender response.

    Once submitted, your tender will be scored and, if you’re the best fit to provide the goods, works or services required, you’ll reach the final stage of the process: the Contract.

    Below are some common terms of submissions:

    • Open Procedure
    This procedure is only one stage process which you will need to complete the selection criteria and the tender all at the same time and submit them by the required time/date specified.

    • Restricted Procedure
    This is a two stage procedure, the first stage being PQQ – Pre-qualifying questionnaire and once this has been evaluated the buyer will then be invited to tender (ITT) by a set deadline.

    • Competitive Procedure with Negotiation
    Exactly the same as above in structure but is intended to be used for the procurement of innovative solutions, where customisation may be required, or where a detailed specification cannot be easily produced or there is a need for negotiation with bidders.

    • Competitive Dialogue
    This is also a stage two process and is used in the same way as Competitive Procedure with Negotiation but following the PQQ stage there is an ITPD stage (Invitation to Participate in Dialogue) and at this stage buyers will discuss with those successful at PQQ, outlining the solutions they are proposing and participate in mini bidding rounds. If successful at this stage then will be moved onto full Dialogue stage where testing and assessment of solutions take place before being put forward to ITT.

    • Innovation Partnership
    This is a new procedure for the procurement of goods, works or services which can’t be met by any solution currently available in the market. If you’re cutting-edge you may well encounter this procedure as it mirrors Restricted Procedure in structure allowing the buyer to undertake the research and development it takes to deliver the outcome. The work may well be outsourced.