How to Tender
This section provides information on how to tender. You can click on one of the links below to view that particular section.
Each tender or bid advert indicates where you can collect the documents you will need to fill in to submit your tender, and where they should be submitted. The advert also indicates a closing date. This is a very firm deadline; no late tenders can be accepted.
NB: Look out for any compulsory site meetings or any other special conditions of contract as non-compliance can disqualify you.
Tenders or bids have to be in writing. Each tender has a number of associated forms which must accompany the tender you submit. The specific forms you require for your tender should be listed in the tender documentation. You should consider very carefully how you fill in these forms. Get advice if you are unsure of anything.
Once you have all of the forms completed and signed, place your tender in an envelope with the tender number on it and deliver it before the closing time to the place specified when the tender was advertised.
Each tender or bid has a number of associated forms, which must accompany the tender or bid you submit. These used to be known as "tender forms" and are now called "bid documents". These bid documents have the prefix "SBD" and "WCBD" for national and provincial bid documents respectively.
The following forms are usually required for national and provincial tenders (except for provincial construction tenders). Please note that these are just examples and cannot be printed and used for submitting bid applications.
There may be other forms to fill in for a specific tender or bid. These should be included with the tender or bid documents that you receive. However, a typical tender or bid package will probably have the following documents:
The following forms are used for construction-related tenders:
Part T1: Tendering procedures
Part T2: Returnable documents
Again, there may be additional forms to complete, which will be included with the tender documents.
At local level, each council may have its own forms, which you should enquire about directly.
The document SBD/WCBD6.1 explains how tenders or bids are decided. WCBD says:
Smaller mistakes or omissions may or may not disqualify you from the tender process; this is a question of interpretation of the tender rules. For example, if the rules say "may disqualify" rather than "must disqualify" for a specific mistake, it is up to the official doing the check to decide whether the mistake is important enough to this tender to disqualify you.
The next phase looks at compliance of the product or services with the specifications and price. Those which do not comply with the specifications are removed from the list, while all the tenders which comply with the specifications are listed in order of price. Those that fall in the lowest price group are then considered in a lowest price tender list.
It is in this phase that the preference points come into play. All the preference points claimed by those on the list of lowest price tenders are first verified. Then the formula is applied to determine who of those on the lowest price list with verifiable points come out with the best result on points, and therefore who should be awarded the contract.
In other words, preference points only come into play after the most expensive tenders have first been excluded. This is to ensure that the most expensive options do not win solely on points, and also to speed up the process, as only those on the lowest price list have their preference points verified.
The Tender Bulletin shows who has won previous tenders, listing the price and other factors taken into account in awarding the tender.