Tenders and Bids

1. Bid/Tender Specification

The specification is a most important section of the invitation to tender documentation, both for the purchasing organisation and for potential suppliers, since it is the specification which sets out precisely what characteristics are required of the products or services sought. There are two main types of specification – the “functional” specification which sets out the functions that the goods and/or services are expected to fulfil, including the performance to be achieved, and the “technical” specification which stipulates the technical characteristics of the goods or services, usually designated in accordance with accepted national or international technical standards. As a general rule, the specification should include expected performance or output.

2. Bid/Tender evaluation

The bid analysis team, have to assess all components of all bids. Firstly to ensure the bid is compliant, and that all parts are complete, then to compare and assess all parts, to identify the best value for money bid overall. It is most important to ensure that the necessary skills are included in the team. For example, a financial expert, a technical expert, a purchasing expert and, if necessary, a commercial or legal expert. The process must follow a defined pattern to which all participants subscribe, to ensure all bids are dealt with in exactly the same way. The methods for comparison have to be fair, thorough and demonstrably so, should inspection take place.