The first step to providing a strong tender or quotation response is to research the department or agency that's advertising.

By doing initial research, your response will be focussed because you'll have a greater understanding of:

  • the department's core service offerings
  • the department's high-level policy directions
  • the requirements of the tender or quotation

Start your research by visiting the relevant Department's website, and the Victorian Government directory.

If you know that a tender or quotation is to be released in advance, take the opportunity to speak to the Project Officer before the tender is released.

1. Read the question carefully

  • Thoroughly read each tender question.
  • Highlight the core requirements.
  • Underline each of the supporting requirements.
  • Read each question within the context of the evaluation criteria and specifications found in Part A: The Invitation.

2. Respond in full to the question

  • Make sure that each requirement of the question is addressed.
  • Provide evidence of relevant, recent experience – no longer than three years old – and demonstrate your capabilities.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the product or service required.
  • Demonstrate you're in a unique position to provide the service.
  • Differentiate your service offering.

3. Don't assume government knows about you

Address each question as if your capabilities, strengths, people and other resources are unknown to the Evaluator by describing:

  • your methodologies and approaches in detail
  • reference projects or sites in detail
  • how previous projects or sites are relevant to the requirements of the tender (i.e. Specifications) – don't rely on past experience without describing it in a tender
  • how your resources are appropriate for the job

4. Target your referees or references

  • Highlight key requirements documented in the tender for a written reference.
  • Provide references relating directly to the key requirements of the tender.
  • Make sure that each key capability criteria listed in the Evaluation Criteria and Specifications are addressed across the references you've provided.

5. Embrace duplication

  • Answer each question in full – even if it seems repetitive.
  • Don't cut and paste from one answer to another – use the repetition to reinforce required experience and capabilities.
  • Respond consistently, accurately and completely to every question.

6. Remember that customer service counts

  • Provide detailed and comprehensive Customer Service Proposals CSPs.
  • CSPs differentiate your response and can generate large variations in scoring.
  • Tenderers may share the same capabilities but not everyone puts effort into CSPs.

7. Offer value-added initiatives

Differentiate a tender response using value-added initiatives which:

  • relate to the requirements of the tender
  • are a product or service valued by government
  • may be delivered by the contractor without cost or resource impacts

8. Understand key policy requirements

Understand the key procurement policies that apply and relate to current and prospective bidders including:

  • Probity (under the Market Approach Policy)
  • Market Approach Policy
  • Victorian Industry Participation Policy (VIPP)
  • Disclosure of Contracts (under the Contracts Management and Contracts Disclosure Policy)
  • Tender Complaints Management (under the Governance Policy)
  • Performance and Financial Guarantees.

9. Submit a complete response

Make sure you've completed every area by checking it off on a checklist. Use our Checklist: completing a government tender.

10. Respond on time

Late tenders will not be accepted unless there's conclusive evidence the late lodgement of the Tender:

  • resulted from the mishandling of the Tender by the department
  • was hindered by a major incident and the integrity of the selection process will not be compromised by accepting applications after the due date