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If you are looking for new business opportunities with the public sector, you may have come across the terms ‘bid’ and ‘tender’ in your searches. Depending on where you have seen these words mentioned, you might be wondering ‘what is the difference between the two?’.
In short, they are both the same thing… and not!
Below we offer you total clarification, and provide you with alternative terminology to avoid any misunderstandings.
A ‘bid’ is a proposal or offer to provide goods, works or services at a certain price.
Bidding is typically initiated by the supplier company in response to a contract notice published by a public sector organisation.
Traditionally the word ‘tender’ is also used to describe a proposal or offer to provide goods, works or services at a certain price.
The contracts suppliers bid for are often called ‘Requests for tenders’ or ‘Tender notices’, and over time the word ‘tender’ has become synonymous with these terms.
Request for Tender (RFT)
Invitation to Tender (ITT)
If you would like to learn more about tendering terminology and improve your bid writing skills, we would recommend our 7hr training course – An Introduction to Public Procurement and Bid Writing. This course has been designed to equip you with everything you need to confidently bid for work in the public sector. It is delivered online over two interactive sessions lasting three and a half hours each.
See how our alerts work, learn about our range of tools, and discover how you can use Tenders Direct to your potential in the public sector marketplace.