Tender response: Are you really meeting your clients’ needs?

We have already examined the difference between putting forward biological cleaning solutions as opposed to playing it safe by defaulting to cheaper chemical cleaners when submitting a tender response to facilities maintenance contracts (What are you going to do?). The conclusion was that biological cleaning solutions work first time, every time, and that they remain active long after chemical cleaners and even enzymatic alternatives have stopped working.

However, before submitting a tender response, have you also considered what it is that the ‘customer’ wants? And with a growing emphasis on ESG in putting forward solutions, has the impact on the human and natural environment been taken into account at all? Far too often the singular focus of a tender response is ‘lowest price’ rather than a long-term solution that will continue to deliver what was promised. How do you tailor your product and service so that it meets the customer’s needs right from the start, rather than being an add-on?

Start with the end goal in mind

Mindful organisations will make it clear that they want a holistic solution that will be both sustainable and environmentally responsible. Their request for a tender will make this clear by putting forward measurable deliverables that will see any successful tenderer implement their requirements, resisting the temptation to revert to tired approaches that don’t work and are ultimately more costly to their bottom line and the environment. This means that the business or organisation should make it clear what solutions are expected to be included in their tender submission. This should ultimately be the deciding outcome in awarding a contract, not price.

Address the tender requirements

The potential tenderer would be wise to include the required deliverables as part of their response, not an add-on or even copying the incumbent. While the temptation would be there to propose a cheaper solution that merely repeats past practices, in the long-term, the costs will actually be higher. This is due to greater water usage, higher plumbing costs to clear constant blockages, more waste produced, and increased labour expenses necessary to clean persistent odour and stains. A premium biological cleaning program will deliver a sustainable solution over time, quantifiably lowering costs in all these areas. The most immediate impact though, will be a reduced impact on both human and natural environments. Unlike harmful chemical cleaners, that are often toxic or highly corrosive, biological cleaning solutions not just reduces these impacts on the environment around us, but in many cases actually enhances it by employing friendly microbes to condition pipes and restore the health of septic systems.

Impressing by being proactive

Finally, why wouldn’t tenderers consider adopting a more proactive stance by proposing KPI’s that measure the actual deliverables requested in the initial tender? By conducting a comprehensive assessment, products are not procured out of habit, but rather based on an analysis of its efficacy and value. In addition, wouldn’t it make sense to invite more feedback from both their client and their customers? Discipline is required from a successful tenderer to implement a contract in such a manner that they both meet their client’s requirements, and also provide regular reports on its implementation. The correct response always proves in the long term to be the more economical one, including providing a solution that works in both drought and La Nina conditions, as well as hard-water regions.

In conclusion

A tender response is not just a commercial transaction, but the start of an ongoing relationship built on trust. A business or organisation should be comfortable that the successful candidate is looking after the detail of the contract, whilst delivering value that endures long after the ink has dried.

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