Sunday 22 April 2018

SMEs lose 90pc of tenders and only have themselves to blame - survey

 

TenderScout CEO Tony Corrigan
TenderScout CEO Tony Corrigan

Fearghal O'Connor

Irish small and medium enterprises consistently lose between 74pc and 90pc of the tenders they compete for, according to a new series of surveys.

Tenderscout, a Dublin company that provides specialist tools to businesses to help them compete more effectively for tenders, found that companies often have themselves to blame for not winning more of the available business.

"It's not the system that's the problem," said TenderScout CEO Tony Corrigan. "SMEs dramatically underinvest in competing for tenders, taking shortcuts on researching the opportunity, building relationships with buyers and delivering a professional proposal."

Since starting the survey series back in 2014, TenderScout had seen a tripling of interest among SMEs in collaborating to win, with 55pc now submitting joint proposals.

Sean Bresnan, head of procurement at the HSE, told a conference organised by TenderScout that collaborative bids are often more flexible in their approach and score better as a result.

At the same conference, Paul Quinn, who heads the Office of Government Procurement, said that 70pc of the companies on tender frameworks are SMEs and that 52pc of spend is with SMEs, in line with European norms.

TenderScout's survey noted that there was a 3pc increase in the number of SMEs starting to tender for the first time, since their last survey six months ago.

"This is hugely encouraging given that some 25pc of tenders only receive a single bid. This is a huge opportunity for even first-time tenderers to get themselves well positioned to win tenders," said Corrigan, who added that TenderScout is raising an additional €500,000 to support continued expansion of its business.

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