Bidding is a Contact Sport

When only the best bid can win, be the best bidder.

Impact Bids

Delivering the bids that will transform
your business

Quite recently, one of our clients wanted to tender for a contract to provide planned and reactive maintenance to a housing authority. The contract represented a growth opportunity for the client, and they were keen to win it.

It was clear that the client had the necessary experience and scale to deliver the contract, but the authority had placed a minimum threshold on the annual revenue of bidders of £5 Million. As our client’s revenue in their most recent accounts was £3.5 Million, they did not meet the threshold set for revenue and were therefore technically ‘unqualified’ to bid.

The estimated contract value was £1.25 Million per year, and our analysis of our client’s financial strength showed low risk to the contracting authority. It was clear that our client had the necessary scale and financial resources to deliver the contract, and in all other circumstances, their experience would make them a highly qualified bidder.

Further, in setting a revenue threshold at £5 Million, the authority was acting – whether consciously or otherwise – to exclude the vast majority of small and medium sized firms from what was in ordinary course a highly attractive contract to the many SMEs who operate in that sector. This directly contradicts the government’s economic policy objectives.

Without identifying our client, we challenged the commissioner to justify the exclusion of small and medium sized firms, and when the reply was unsatisfactory, we escalated the issue to the Public Procurement Review Service of the Cabinet Office.

Within seven days of contacting PPRS the original contract notice was withdrawn, and a new invitation to tender was issued by the authority with the original financial threshold entirely removed. Our client was now ‘qualified to bid’.

Bidding is a contact sport, and a little contact can deliver a big impact.