The Data Driven Approach to Tendering (Part 1)

Most companies that bid on tenders in Singapore are not able to take a data-driven approach to tendering. In fact, they would not be able to easily perform data analytics on tenders even if they wanted to. Tender data is simply not found in way that enables ease of analysis. This is one of the reasons TenderBoard was created – to serve as a platform that enables analysis of data that would allow companies to be more competitive.

In this 2 part blog, we discuss the data-driven approach to tendering. This first part focuses on the overall tendering process, while the second part goes a little deeper into the company specific metrics that are meaningful.

Let’s get started!

Data Driven Approach – Part 1

What data is there?

We track publicly available data and there is lots of it! This includes both tenders that are released, as well as tenders that have been closed or awarded. The data points include the tender’s description, open and close dates, buyer and line items. It also includes the companies that bid on the tenders, their bid prices as well as the winning bid. All this data is a treasure trove waiting to be investigated!

The Tendering Process

The tendering process comprises much more than the act of bidding on tenders. In general, it may be broken down into 3 phases:
Each phase has different tasks as part of the overall tendering workflow. In the Pre-Tender Release phase attention is focused on tracking the market for tenders and competitors. When the tender is released in the Tender Open phase, work is concentrated on:

  1. Analysing the requirements and studying the options to meet those requirements
  2. Understanding what the competition would do
  3. Bid or No Bid decision
  4. Costing and Pricing analysis
  5. Bid preparation and submission

Once the bid is submitted and the tender goes into Post Tender Closing phase, the tendering workflow is not completed yet! We continue to monitor for this particular bid’s results. Regardless of a win or loss, the results are fed back into the workflow to ensure lessons are learnt to improve the next round of bidding.

OK, but how does data affect my tendering? What is the data-driven approach?

Our tools and services are designed to enhance and bring data into each phase of tendering. Here is the same workflow, with a data-driven approach:

Pre Tender Release

A data-driven approach to tendering infuses the insights from data into the entire tendering lifecycle. At the Pre-Tender Release phase, we can perform pervasive scanning of tenders, ensuring we do not miss out any opportunities that appear on the many tender hosting sites in Singapore. At this stage, we may also better prepare for the future by looking at past data. Doing this allows us to understand:

  1. Historical performance of own company
  2. Closest competitors, their capabilities, and their historical performance
  3. Benchmarking against competitors and within the industry
  4. Pricing analysis

Tender Open Phase

At the Tender Open phase, our pervasive scanning ensures that opportunities are picked up when they are released, providing the maximum time for preparation. During this phase, our analysis becomes a lot more focused to the specific opportunity on hand. Some of the questions that should be asked include:

  1. Who else would bid for this and what prices would they likely bid at?
  2. Is this the first purchase for the customer? Who is the incumbent?
  3. Is this tender part of a larger programme? Are there any value adds that can be provided to strengthen the bid?
  4. What is the likely closing price?
  5. What should we bid to win and is it commercially viable to bid?

Analysis tender data could allow companies to answer these questions and ultimately lead to better bids being made.

Post Tender Closing

Finally, after the tender transitions to Post Tender Closing phase, continual monitoring of tenders ensures we are kept updated on when and whom tenders are awarded to. The results are processed and the company performance and benchmarking analyses are updated.

Conclusion

The data-driven approach infuses the insights from data analytics into each of the phases of tendering. TenderBoard provides a platform (learn more About Us) and Services to help in each of the tendering phases:

  1. Pervasive monitoring of tenders with notifications when tenders of interest are released
  2. Company performance and competitor analysis
  3. Benchmarking with competitors and within the industry

As we close out this post, we hope that we have provided some insights to the data-driven approach to tendering. However, there are probably some lingering questions:

  1. What kind of company analysis and benchmarking can be performed? What metrics are important?
  2. What competitor analysis can be performed?
  3. What pricing analysis can be performed?

We will touch on these in Part 2 of the Data-Driven Approach to Tendering series. Do keep a look out! In the mean time, do let us know your thoughts on the Data-Driven Approach to Tendering in the comments below. Are there any data related challenges you would like to share?

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