So, you’ve spent hours crafting your tender documentation, you’re delighted with your final documentation. All there is left to do now is to submit everything you’ve created. Easy, right? Well no, not necessarily.
There are many different ways to submit tenders, so it is essential that you are aware of how the tender should be submitted well in advance of the deadline date. Is a paper copy required? If so, how many copies? Where should it be submitted to? What is the deadline time Can you get it there for that time? Can you be certain? Many companies have failed in tenders which they have spent hours creating simply because on their way to deliver the tender, something unforeseen has happened (traffic, breakdown, accident). It is YOUR responsibility to make sure the documents are there in time, so ensure you allow enough time to comply with the deadline. If in doubt, deliver it the day before.
Nowadays, the majority of tenders are submitted electronically, either via email or by uploading documentation through an on-line portal. Even with these, you need to be careful. Some portals only accept files below a certain size, so you need to read the submission requirements very carefully. If you are uploading through an on-line portal, are their instructions for upload clear? Are you sure you understand them? It is no good, trying to upload documentation 5 minutes before the deadline, only to find out that you don’t really know how the upload process works, because at that point, their helpdesk will probably be overwhelmed with calls, and you probably won’t get to submit in time.
If in doubt, contact the helpdesk well in advance and ask them to talk you through the process, most will be very happy to do so. Again, leave yourself plenty of time, especially where you have multiple documents that need uploading. Some portals allow ‘bulk’ uploads, others require you to attach one document at a time.
Imagine how annoyed and frustrated you would be if you wrote a winning tender, only to be disqualified because you didn’t submit on time. And yes, before you ask, even if your tender submission is only a few seconds beyond the deadline time, it will be rejected.
Don’t let it happen to you.