Writing tender responses or proposals is time consuming, however the most important thing to do the right way if you want to win new contracts. Be time efficient by learning what to include in a tender template so that you can get more proposals in by that deadline!

If you are a small to medium business offering services then this simple guide will help you to prepare a tender template. Here’s what you need to include:

Template design

A simple design with a header and footer not only makes the document look professional but shows your brand identity and makes you more memorable. If you have one, use your logo in the header and your contact details in the footer.

Front page

Using your template design or colours create a smart front page with the name of the buyers company, organisation etc. and the title of the contract or tender.

Contents table

This is a time saver for the buyer who has to read endless contract proposals, so help them out by including one.


Every business needs an introduction that explains who you are and what you can provide for the buyer. Spend some time on this and make it striking. First impressions are of course important!

Main section

The main section will be be the hardest part and will take up the most time. Even if you only provide one type of service, each job will be slightly if not very different. The best solution to this is to collect past tenders or look at typical questions you would be asked. By doing this create an A-Z of of useful facts and answers. Put absolutely anything in there that may be of slightest use.

I use my A-Z daily! Instead of re-writing answers you can just edit and tailor what you already have!

Your working environment

A simple summary on how you manage your projects or services. What approach do you take to managing the work, do you have specific methods of doing this? For example, we use an online application (Basecamp) to manage our projects in the most efficient way possible, allowing us (and the client) to have as much information at hand at any given moment.

Staff CVs

Buyers will need to know that you have the right skills and experience amongst the staff, so here’s your chance to show of your wonderful team members.

Statements and policies

The majority of tenders (especially government/public tenders) will ask to see that you are compliant with laws and regulations. Having these policies collated together in one document will save time and hassle. Even if they are not asked for they are always important to include!

Firstly you should have an environmental policy and an equal opportunities policy, they are standard for businesses to have so if you don’t then seek help on how to write them.

You may be accredited with the ISO9000 Quality Management Policy, if so include it. If not then you should have a statement written up for your business, almost every buyer will ask to see this. If you have the time then I would suggest seeking advice on how to gain the ISO9000.

If it is of relevance, you need to ensure that your company is compliant with the Copyright Law and Data Protection Act 1988 and it may be worth checking out if you need to be registered with the Information Commissioners Office under this act.

Testimonials and case studies

The best way to prove that you have what it takes to do the job is to provide examples of past work, and if you have testimonials that’s just the icing on the cake. Word of mouth in my opinion the best form of marketing, having a client testifying how brilliant you are/were can give the winning edge.

Try to include case studies for all of your work that way when using the template you can delete the ones that aren’t relevant to the contract you’re tendering for. For examples of case studies take a look at “Our work” page.

When writing tenders it’s important to answer the questions in the specific order that they are asked in. Many tenders fail to do this and wonder why they are never shortlisted or selected!

Remember this template is only a rough guide to help you prepare tenders and that each one needs to be tailored to the specifics of the contract. The idea of this is to ensure you have the majority of information ready at your fingertips.

If you’d like to discuss your startup or project, get in touch with Simpleweb today.

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