Interpreting Questions for a Tender Document

‘I just don’t know what they’re looking for!’ The challenge of reading between the lines.

Far too often, the questions in a tender document can be poorly worded or vague. Even more frustrating are those questions that are open-ended or which seem to be asking you to ‘read between the lines’.

This means that it is not uncommon to feel that you haven’t got to the nub of what a question is asking.

So what should you do?

  • Ask the client for clarification or to provide context for any questions you are uncertain of. Opening up a dialogue is a great way to put yourself on the inside track.
  • Carefully read and digest all of the information you have been given by the client. The answers you are looking for will often be in the briefing or background papers you have received.
  • Collate all the knowledge you have built up in your past relationship with the client (e.g. from business development activities and past projects).
  • Research the client and project you’re tendering for on line.
  • Use the knowledge and information you have on the client and the project to provide context and to interpret and understand each question more completely.

How Rothera Group can help you with your Tender Documents

We’ve helped bid teams unpick hundreds of poorly worded questions. We do this in two ways:

  1. We provide advice on specific tenders. We can therefore work with you to develop a successful strategy for a live bid.
  1. We incorporate this issue into our general bid-writing courses. Using real-life examples, we’ll show your team how to understand what’s being asked, so that they can deliver winning answers.

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