LESSON #2: UNDERSTAND THE FORMULA FOR WINNING
During our many years of experience, Aurora Marketing has developed a formula for winning. This formula states that the 5 key elements for any bid are: team, track record, relationship with the client, commitment to bid and outstanding approach/solution.
While the first four elements are considered mandatory in best practice bidding, it is important to note that they will get you in the race but will not get you over the line. For example, your track record may include having built more bridges than any other company in the world, but this won’t be enough to win the tender to build another bridge.
The 5th element, an outstanding approach/solution, is the key. You must be able to develop an outstanding approach or solution for this project for this client, to give the best chance to win. The other 4 elements give you the knowledge and expertise to be able to develop this winning approach or solution.
Importantly, you may notice that we have not considered price as an element. From our observations, price is part of the approach or solution element. For instance, it may be that the lowest price is the approach or solution you adopt. We generally caution against this strategy though and work with teams to develop a more sustainable and broader tender strategy.
According to our research conducted in the Behind Closed Doors report, “the topic of pricing was a strong theme, with buyers firmly stating that there is a big difference between price and value. The bidder mantra of ‘it all comes down to price’ is misleading and not accurate. Multiple buyers provided definitions of value that included achieving project objectives, meeting buyer expectations and adequately managing risks. Indeed, a low price is more likely to raise suspicions and concerns rather than create excitement. Several buyers stated that if a proposal is significantly lower than competitors, it usually signals that the bidder has shifted risk, not adequately scoped the project or will take an aggressive approach to variations to cover their low bid price”.
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