Bid Writing: 6 Essential Skills Needed to Win Tenders

In this post we look at the essential skills your bid team needs to write high quality bids and win more public sector contracts. Below you will find tips on how to improve these skills and links to further reading.

Analytical Thinking

Being able to comprehend the tender’s requirements and criteria, as well as what the buyer wants and expects, is essential. You also need to be able to find and collect relevant data and proof to back up your statements and reasoning.

Technical Authoring

You have to be able to write clearly and concisely, and know how to answer questions directly and completely. Great bid writers write with purpose – rambling and using jargon or vague descriptions will not suffice. You need to demonstrate your technical knowledge and experience, using evidence and examples where relevant. You want to convey your value proposition and differentiation in a compelling way.

Project Management

Bids are projects, requiring you to be able to work within deadlines while managing multiple tasks and contributors. You cannot copy and paste from previous bids or leave everything to the last minute. You need a clear and flexible project plan that sets realistic milestones and allows for contingencies. You want to submit a high-quality bid that reflects your best effort and expertise.

Business Development

A proactive and strategic attitude to finding and pursuing new opportunities will increase your chances of success. Just waiting for tenders to be published and hoping for the best is not a winning strategy. You need to research and engage with potential buyers, understand their needs and expectations, and work to build trusting relationships. Positioning yourself as a preferred supplier will increase your chances of success.


Making bids stand out from the competition, without compromising on substance or style, is a beneficial skill to have. Try optimising your formatting to improve readability, and only present data or charts that are significant. Use creative elements, such as graphics, testimonials, or awards (where possible) to highlight your strengths and achievements. You want to catch the attention and interest of the procurement team and persuade them to choose you.

Review and Editing

Reviewing and editing skills can make a big difference in your bid quality. Reviewing ensures that your bid is accurate, consistent, complete, and compliant. Editing can correct spelling and grammar errors, as well as improve your ideas and presentation.

By developing these skills or having them within your bid team, you will improve your chances of winning new business with the public sector. If you need help improving your tender writing skills or need support with specific bids, we would be happy to help.

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