To tender is not a business
By W van Rooyen
On our Howtotender.co.za website we have a contact us page. The idea with this page is to answer questions from entrepreneurs regarding our website should there be something on the website that is unclear or just normal run of the mill questions regarding our products and services. The problem is that we get a lot of weird questions and requests through this page.
The most common thread of the weird responses that we receive is the misperception of people (not entrepreneurs) that to tender is a business. We see it through the statements that these people make and through the questions that they ask.
These people think once they have registered a company, got a Tax Clearance Certificate as well as a B-BBEE Certificate they are ready to tender. They also think that these three documents will ensure that they will be successful in their bidding efforts. The truth of the matter is that unfortunately these people would be lucky if their tender responses make it through the first round of evaluation.
In order to tender, you must have a business! Even if it is a start-up business, you must have the intention to do business, irrespective of winning a tender or not.
You can not say that you have registered this business and now you are ready to tender for security services, cleaning services, building bridges or supplying canons to the army. It just doesn’t work that way anymore.
Maybe five or ten years ago these kind of dodgy business operations and tender responses were acceptable, but nowadays you won’t get far with these kinds of tricks. There are several checks and balances in place to ensure that the whole tender process is transparent. Gone are the days that you could respond to a tender and be awarded the tender and not even had a business premises where you operated from.
So to summarize:
- Ensure that you have a legitimate business operation;
- If you have a startup business ensure that there is evidence of business transactions other that that of the tender that you are responding to;
- Establish a business address and/or an office where your business operates from.
To tender is not a business but if you have a business and you respond to tenders it can be very rewarding.
To learn more about this and many other tender conditions please attend one of our How-to-Tender workshops. For more information on the tender courses please email Estelle at Estelle@howtotender.co.za.
This article was written by Werner van Rooyen, Director of HowToTender (Pty) Ltd. which specializes in tender consulting and tender training.