Business Development

How Hudson Succeed is helping North East businesses to bid for tenders

By Hudson Procurement Group
September 2020

Bidding for tenders – Hudson helps Imagine You Can and APM Cleaning

Bidding for tenders is a vital process for securing new contracts and growing your business. Depending on your industry, it is likely that your competitors are bidding for the contracts they’re securing. As well as other strategies such as marketing, tendering is one of the most effective ways to grow your organisation.

Hudson Succeed is a Durham-based business development consultancy. We were founded by husband and wife team, Jill and John Hudson. Jill has been supporting global organisations with their business growth efforts for almost two decades. Hudson was founded based on her experiences of tendering and procurement.

Across the Hudson Group, our mission is to make tendering a fairer and more transparent playing field for all businesses.

Whilst working with the 700+ businesses that we support, we noticed a common misconception from SMEs in particular. It seems that some SMEs are under the impression that they are too small to tender for work. This is not the case.

Our Head of Bid Management, Daniel Hall, said:

“You have to be realistic when making your bid/no-bid decision. You should always consider the contract value and assess the experience requirements before bidding.

However, there are advantages to being an SME when tendering for work. For example, the UK government has a target to spend £1 in £3 with SMEs. This means that public sector organisations want to work with smaller companies.

SMEs also have the advantage of not competing with industry giants on smaller projects. Larger businesses tend not to bid for contracts with smaller values, therefore increasing your chances of winning.”

Since launching our Hudson Succeed suite of bid writing services, we have been thrilled to work with businesses around the world. However, as a company with strong roots in the North East, it is always a pleasure to support local businesses.

Securing 4-years’ income for Imagine You Can UK

Imagine You Can UK is a leading provider of the National Citizen Service (NCS) in Redcar and East Cleveland. They also work across the North of England, delivering opportunities for personal development and employability skills for young people.

The company’s Director approached the Hudson Succeed team and enquired about our bid writing services. They required support with the submission of a tender for the provision of additional delivery partners to provide capacity for delivering an NCS programme.

Challenges

When bidding for tenders, there will inevitably be challenges that you didn’t foresee. With experience, these obstacles become easier to mitigate. Due to the nature of this tender, we knew that we would encounter challenges with sensitive information. The work required detailed information regarding Imagine You Can UK’s safeguarding and data management procedures.

Tight deadlines also posed an issue to our time management. As the company was a new client, we did not have a bank of information at hand, as we do with returning organisations. This meant that the team had to extract the necessary information in a short timeframe to ensure maximum quality marks.

A detailed communication procedure was therefore created to obtain the information needed. The team then underwent a thorough bid plan, outlining the necessary activity for both parties.

Due to the deadline of the tender, work was allocated across our team of bid writers. They proactively took charge of each response and produced high-quality, well-researched and detailed tender responses.

Results

Our team produced 5,000 words within a little over 24 hours of the work being commissioned.

As a result, Imagine You Can UK were successful with their endeavour and they were accepted onto the framework. This secured them sustainable, ongoing income for the next four years.

Due to this success, we have developed an excellent relationship with the company, and we look forward to working with them in the future.

“Daniel and the team gave me excellent instructions on the content they needed to complete this tender. The whole process was seamless and I’m glad to say we were accepted onto the framework. It was a pleasure to work with Hudson and we look forward to collaborating in the future.” – Dave King, Director at Imagine You Can UK.

Winning a DPS place for APM Cleaning Ltd

APM Cleaning provides commercial and domestic cleaning services on a national scale. The company contacted Hudson Succeed for support after identifying a tendering opportunity. They expressed concerns with developing the quality responses and providing the evidence required to win a place on the framework.

After our initial consultation with APM Cleaning, the Hudson team found another contract opportunity using our Facilities Tenders portal. The team made the client aware of the second opening which was a Facilities Management DPS with Prosper Housing.

Once the work was agreed, the Hudson Succeed team began working on both tenders for the client.

Challenges

The deadlines were very close together which meant that both submissions needed to be developed in tandem, necessitating splitting the workload between two bid writers. This, combined with ongoing tenders we were already compiling for other clients, posed a challenge to our time management.

APM was also a new client with Hudson Succeed which meant that required company details needed to be extracted.

Through the creation of Hudson’s staple bid plan, a communication procedure was implemented between us and the client. The two assigned bid writers collaborated effectively to ensure no overlapping in requests for information from APM.

Once completed, the tender response underwent a thorough, internal review process. Our Head of Bid Management took the lead on all stages of content development.

Results

Both tenders were signed off and submitted four days ahead of the deadline.

As a result of our team’s combined efforts, we successfully secured APM a place on the second DPS. We were successful in all the LOTs applied to.

We are still awaiting the results of the initial tendering opportunity.

Due to this success, we are pleased to say our working relationship with APM Cleaning has continued. We have since supported the submission of four more tenders. One has been successful. We’re awaiting the results for the others. We also look forward to working with the client on a future bid, later this year.

“The Hudson team was very reactive in their ways of working and handled all communications very effectively and efficiently. This partnership is credit to the recent win for the Prosper DPS for Facilities Management, which we were successful on all LOTs applied. We would recommend Hudson to any company who require bid support of any kind!” – Samantha Reid, Director at APM Cleaning Ltd.

Advice for SMEs

As we begin to emerge from a pandemic, we understand that bidding for contracts can seem daunting. However, it is important to remember that businesses are still actively seeking suppliers.

“The procurement industry hasn’t come to a standstill” – Daniel Hall, Head of Bid Management.

Understandably, some SMEs don’t know how to tender for work. The practice is more prevalent in some industries than in others. In the construction, for example, most businesses are either actively tendering or have been involved in the process before.

However, bidding for tenders does carry advantages. For example:

Public sector contracts guarantee pay

It might seem strange to sign a contract and not be guaranteed pay. Unfortunately, we hear of this happening in the private sector more often than we would like.

The Crown Commercial Service’s Prompt Payment Code means that this won’t happen in the public sector. The code stipulates that invoices must be paid within 60-days. This gives suppliers peace of mind, knowing that income is guaranteed, and the profit can be accounted for.

Build your experience

If you’re a relatively new business, building a portfolio of experience is crucial before you go after the big contracts. By securing smaller value projects, you can demonstrate relevant and impressive experience when the time comes to “bid bigger”.

Also, building a portfolio of experience means building a bank of contacts. Bidding for tenders helps to connect you with buyers that you may not have had access to previously.

Frameworks can help your sustainability

Winning places on long-term frameworks increase your chances of securing contracts sustainably. Some frameworks can last up to 10-years or more. You don’t want to miss the opportunity to bid for this work as the projects are published.

Further information

For more information about any of our bid writing services, please get in touch for a free consultation. Call or email us and a member of the team will contact you as soon as possible.

Whether you are new to bidding for tenders or looking to outsource the process, we have a service to suit you.

We’re here to help you SUCCEED.

For more information, or to speak to a consultant about your tendering strategy, please visit Hudson Succeed.

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