Top 10 Tendering Mistakes to Avoid

Top 10 Tendering Mistakes to Avoid


What are the Top 10 Tendering mistakes?


Most things in life revolve around the dos and don’ts; the game of tendering is no different. It may seem exciting to push the boundaries in life sometimes but deviating from the requirements when tendering can cost you a valuable tender that your business desperately needs.



There are many examples of tendering mistakes some of which may seem minor or harmless but could cost you a tender. Let’s be pro-active!


Here are the Top 10 Tendering Mistakes to Avoid:



1. Don’t be late – For the Site Meeting or the Closing Date. Mark the dates on your Calendar, set reminders and know where you are going, preferably before and not on the day. Submit the tender with time to spare. Account for things like traffic, unknown locations or any other obstacles that could result in a last minute rush.

2. Site Meeting – Attend and sign the Register. The purpose of a Site Meeting is for you to have a detailed understanding of the tender requirements and is also significant as you will be able to see who else is planning to tender. When evaluating your tender the Client may check whether you attended and if it’s a Compulsory Meeting you will most likely be disqualified. Either way it makes sense to attend to get useful info regarding the tender.

3. Don’t Assume – if you have questions, if you are unsure, if you think something is incorrect or missing, communicate with the relevant contacts and get clarification, chances are you’re not the only one asking. On that note if your tender is unsuccessful ask why so that you can use the information when applying for future tenders.

4. Don’t be Irrelevant – Keep all your answers clear & concise and most importantly relevant.

5. Copies, Copies, Copies – remember to submit the correct number of copies required and keep an extra copy for your own records.

6. Don’t be Untidy – Imagine how frustrating it is for the person evaluating or adjudicating a tender to try and decipher poor handwriting, or make sense of pages which aren’t in order. An organized and legible document creates a positive impression. After all, you want to present your company in the best light and a well presented tender creates the impression that contracts will be handled with the same care and attention to detail.

7. Don’t Misrepresent – Stick to the facts. Don’t make false statements about your company or its ability. A Tender Document is a legal document and therefore enforceable by law. Misrepresentation or unsatisfactory practices could lead to your company being placed on the National Treasury Restricted List. “Some of the common practices that lead to the restriction of suppliers are poor performance, breach of contract, failure to obtain permission to do remunerative work outside of employment, supply of counterfeit products, and collusion.”

8. Follow the Requirements – Meet all the minimum requirements. Go through the requirements carefully ensuring you meet them. Tenders that do not meet the minimum requirements otherwise known as non-responsive are disqualified.

9. Check, Check & Check again – Admittedly not the most exhilarating task but vitally important. Get someone with fresh eyes to check your tender a final time while making sure all the required documents are attached. Be 100% confident that the tender you are submitting is complete and accurate.

10. Delivery Location – Make sure you know exactly where your tender needs to be delivered to, right down to the Tender Box number, before the Closing Day.



Bonus tip:
Keep abreast of the developments in your sector. Subscribe to a service that provides direct, simple access to valuable building and construction information delivered daily directly to your Inbox, thereby ensuring consistent wealth of new business leads. A service which also provides Support Services if you need assistance or have a query. Want to know more? Contact me on




DYK (according to
“A bidder must not quote more than R1 million when the bid document stipulates that the bid is an 80:20. This means that proposals cannot exceed R1 million. Bidders must be aware that 90:10 bids, on the other hand, are valued above R1 million, but bid issuers are not allowed to indicate how much they have budgeted for a project. However, bid issuers are required to indicate whether a bid is a 90:10 or 80:20 in terms of the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act (PPPFA). So this serves as a good indicator of how much the bid issuer has set aside for the project.”



The business of tenders


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About Sasha Anderson

Millennial Mom + wife living the hash-tag life

The Twitter beginners guide to Tender Influencers

Leads 2 Business : Twitter influencers

So how do you become the McGuyver of Twitter Tender influencers?


No, I am no guru of the Twitterverse, but I spend a bit of time using it. As far as social goes I can operate with a fair amount of ease on some social media platforms. But it still takes time to find your feet and potentially find the information you are looking for. So today’s tip would be how to find useful Tender tweeps to follow on Twitter.  They may or may not be tendering themselves, but have knowledge or report on topics or factors that effect Tendering or the Construction industry.

Now I am sure that everyone has their own list on Twitter with their favourites, and this one is by no means exhaustive. This is a BEGINNERS guide. So, hu erm, with no further adieu….


Step one would be to start at the beginning…. have Twitter loaded on your desktop, tablet or smartphone. If you are at a loss, you can click this link to the Twitter App and be directed to Google Play to download it. Then get yourself versed on using this microblogging tool quickly on either YouTube or by getting the lowdown from a social media leader like Mashable.

So you are up to speed. Easier than you thought right!?!


For keeping in the know about what is happening in the Construction industry on the continent:










Some International Construction Companies that are an influence on the Industry on Twitter:












Some Construction Industry bodies:









Some influential Tweeps:









Well, there is your starting point. An easy one at that. This will help give you a foundation to begin with until you learn more about Twitter and find more interesting tweeps to follow. Please let me know who you find that is interesting … always good to meet new people.


Until then, see you in the Twitterverse at @L2Bcoza.




About Carmen Barends

Social Media adventurer exploring new frontiers and learning how to survive. Tongue in cheek and mischief are the order of any good day topped with a sprinkling of laughter.

Survive & Thrive the remainder of 2015

The end of the year is approaching and fast. Deadlines are looming and time is slipping away.

If you’re like most people you’re probably wondering when you’ll turn the corner and see that finish line, the one you have been looking for since the start of 2015. You’re exhausted, light-headed, in serious need of a siesta and possibly considering quitting and trying again next year.

Don’t let November get the better of you!


You may need a quote or 2 to help keep motivated and focused, something like:

“Just keep swimming.” by Dory (Finding Nemo) or,

“My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humour, and some style.” by Maya Angelou

Leads 2 Business : Keep Swimming

If that doesn’t float your boat try these to help you Survive & Thrive the remainder of 2015:


Carpe Diem!

Ask for help

Be realistic

Show gratitude

Breathe deeply

Be proactive & plan

Spend time with nature

Take care of your body

Be optimistic & positive

Focus on your strengths

Don’t sweat the small stuff

Keep things in perspective

See the beauty around you

See problems as challenges

Have a break (have a Kitkat)

Reward yourself when you achieve

Get to work a little early and stay a little late

Don’t rely on your memory (write things down)

Try something new, variety is the spice of life after all


And lastly…

Eat, Drink & be Merry

You made it! You survived another year and that’s reason enough to celebrate. Lighten up, enjoy yourself and others during the ‘silly season’.


Leads 2 Business - Survive and Thrive



Further Reading:

About Sasha Anderson

Millennial Mom + wife living the hash-tag life

Financial Business Tips

Financial Business Tips

I must confess I don’t have much life experience with regards to the topic of ‘Financial Tips for Business’, considering this I decided to take some advice from those more qualified and have relied heavily on my research skills.There were many tips I came across while scouring various news articles, business columns and financial websites, too many in fact to mention in one blog.

So I decided to list those that seemed most prevalent in my research.

  • Goals: Financial goals inform what to strive for, focus on and what expectations are. Goals enable everyone to work collaboratively to achieve success, which allows companies to realize more financial achievements. It is important to keep financial goals measurable and realistic. Timeframes, values and targets are measurable components to include.
  • Budget: A budget helps keep track of cash flows, increase reserves, minimizes unnecessary spending, gives you a clear plan for all income and expenses and should be updated regularly.
  • Cash Flow: A cash flow analysis is an integral part of operating a successful business; it enables a business owner to understand gains, losses and identify financial concerns as they arise in order to resolve them early.
  • Debtors: Implement procedures to avoid late payments by Debtors. Make your credit terms and conditions obvious from the start. Issue invoices promptly that are clear and accurate. An automated credit management system will help to keep track of debtors’ accounts.
  • Creditors: It’s important that you meet your obligations; failing to meet deadlines can incur fines and interest. These are unnecessary costs that can be avoided with planning.
  • Savings: When times are tough, it is vital to have the comfort of knowing you have savings to rely on. Take the time to grow, strengthen and secure savings.
  • Support: Choose the right finance partner, establish a good relationship with them from the start and if you think your bank isn’t providing you with the best deal on your short-term borrowing, overdraft or investment facility think about alternative arrangements.

To summarize: a prosperous and profitable business needs planning and organisation in all aspects. If however, you like me are not a business owner remember as an individual we can also use many of the financial tips listed above in order to achieve our own financial freedom.

“A good financial plan is a road map that shows us exactly how the choices we make today will affect our future.” Alexa Von Tobel

Further Reading/Sources:

About Sasha Anderson

Millennial Mom + wife living the hash-tag life

Time Management Tips for your Business

Time Management Tips for your Business


As Dr. Seuss says:


“How did it get so late, so soon?”


When I think of time management, I immediately think of the Bar-One chocolate. For a 25-hour day. It always seems as though there are just too few hours in a day. An 8-hour working day is only 480 minutes. This, however, is one issue that chocolate (unfortunately) cannot solve. Effective time management is the answer.


Time management is the process of organising and planning how much time you spend on specific activities. Being busy is not the same as being effective and spending copious amounts of time working on different activities throughout the day, often leaves you with little to show for it at the end of the day. Most of us are familiar with the phrase “work smarter, not harder”.


Time management is a skill that everyone can learn. Here are ten tips that I believe will assist you in developing the skill further:

1. MAKE NOTES. For me personally, this is one of the most important tasks. Make a note of everything you need to do, instead of trying to remember everything in your head. This will help you to plan your day.
2. ORGANISE YOUR WORKSPACE. A cluttered workspace creates distraction. Only keep what you need on your desk.
3. PRIORITISE TASKS. Divide them up into three groups, from most important, to moderate and least important. Always start with the most important, even if you can only complete a small part of the task.
4. SET TIME LIMITS. Setting time limits is very important for keeping focused on the task at hand, and to avoid procrastination.
5. KNOW YOUR LONG-TERM GOALS. Review your work on a regular basis to ensure that what you are achieving, is in line with your goals and targets.
6. DELEGATE. You can’t delegate everything and anything, however, if there is someone else with the necessary skills and time, they can assist you by taking on the task.
7. USE A CALENDAR. This is a useful tool for managing your daily activities. An online calendar tool, i.e. on your mail client, enables you to access your calendar from wherever you are. Use this calendar to mark out deadlines.
8. TARGET TO BE EARLY. When you plan to meet a target on time, you will either be on time or late. However, if you target to be early, you will most likely be on time.
9. KEEP THE BALANCE. It is important to manage your time so that you can include various aspects of your life into your day, such as work, family, friends and your health.
10. Last, but certainly not least, TAKE A BREAK. If you overwork yourself, you will tire yourself out and become less productive.


And so to end, I would like to leave you with the following thought:


“The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot.” – Michael Altshuler



About Bianca Warwick

I had the privilege of joining the Leads 2 Business content team in January 2012. I work in the exciting Projects department, following the progress of construction developments in KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State.

Risk Analysis

Risk Analysis

To jump or not to jump? That is the question.


I vividly remember when I was younger and my teacher asked me if I could swim the froggie (breast stroke to you and I), I wasn’t sure what that was but I knew two things.

  1. I knew that a frog jumped on all fours and
  2. I knew that swimming involved getting from one side of the pool to the other.


That was all the information I needed to come to my conclusion, I thought to myself. “I could do this?”. In a matter of seconds I had decided that I could swim, regardless of whether or not I had actually done this. I had seen a frog leap plenty times, I mean how much more different could it be in water?? In that moment I had made a conclusive decision to sink or swim.


One can say,  I think, “That is crazy!” and I probably was. I think I could have won first prize for my bravery but that is what risk taking is all about, uncertainty. Risk taking presents a high level of uncertainty and this scenario is no different. There is always an element of uncertainty when taking risk.  A few scenarios could have played themselves out in this situation but only one did, of course the level of uncertainty is heightened by the lack of knowledge and experience but it does not eliminate the fact that the objective was clear – getting to the other side (staying alive perhaps).


You see, the science behind the method of risk taking will take you through the steps of reducing the levels of uncertainty. Transforming a high risk situation to a low risk situation. Intellectuals will teach you different formulas, each advocating for their own method of how to best approach risk management. They will say try the KISS approach, try the Delphi method, do the SWOT analysis, conduct expert interviews or have collaborative workshops but somehow all too often produce the result of focusing on the “weeds” as described by Ovidiu Cretu et al in his book Risk Management for design and construction. This can actually cause what they call “analysis paralysis”. Where one becomes so fixated on the tiny details that it stops one from making progress towards taking risks.


Project managers and contractors will know all too well that there will always be an element of uncertainty in any project. The trick is to learn how to reduce it and when the plan doesn’t work out, to find ways of coping. If at some point you can’t avoid it or transfer the risk, Vickey Haney presents a few options of possible responses.

– Work around it

– Contingency plans

– Reserve Funds

– Follow a detailed plan

– “do nothing”

Although the last one seems non-response, it can sometimes be the best response. Taking risks is part of the game, learn it, play it and play it well. With a combination of faith, bravery and action; you too could also learn how to swim. Someone said “a life without risk is a life half lived”.


Risk Analysis requires an assessment of the risk, a belief in the risk you are taking, followed by the action of doing what is best for the situation. Sometimes no one can teach you that, you can choose to jump or not to jump. Perhaps we could learn a lesson from my youthful self and take the plunge. You can never fully eliminate risk but you can certainly reduce it so you can achieve the objective.


The risk will always be that you could sink, oh but what if you swim?


I did. What about you?




Book: Risk Management for Design and Construction, Ovidiu Cretu, Robert B. Stewart, Terry Berends

Some quotes on good living,



How to Negotiate a Raise….

posted in: General, How To 0

How to Negotiate a Raise….


So is there a right or wrong way to ask for a raise?

Well to be perfectly honest, I’m not the most rational thinker when it comes to this very delicate situation, and have never personally gone forth and requested a raise let alone negotiated one, but I’m pretty sure my method of blurting everything out in an email to my CEO, closing my eyes while I press send and then cringing until I receive a response is not the best way to go, for one it reeks havoc on your nerves and in some cases provokes sleepless nights and comfort eating.

The one thing I am positive about is this has to be one of the most awkward and uncomfortable situations you can find yourself in at the work place, so I started by finding some useful don’ts to get you on to the fast track to negotiating a salary increase.

Now get this right!
If your company is meeting targets, profit margin is looking good, expansion is viable, then by all means go and


“Risk it for the Biscuit”!


But…..If the talk around the water cooler is retrenchment letters have just gone out and there has been a mail sent out about saving on water and toilet paper then maybe, now is not a good time.

So you’ve decided to buy a house or a new car, or you are now unexpectedly expecting twins….
while this is all very exciting news and I’m sure your boss will be happy you are experiencing any one of these fun filled events… ultimately they have no bearing on whether or not you deserve an increase!

No Guilt Trips
So while trips are fun and we all like going on them, Guilt is not a trip anyone enjoys, so trying to send your boss on one is never a good idea!
And yes I understand divorces are expensive, your spouse losing his or her job is tough and having your 10yr old cat named Whiskers in and out of the vet is heart breaking…..
Once again this is not your bosses troubles, hardship doesn’t warrant an increase, that would be saying that your colleague who’s in a stable relationship, who’s partner is a top earner and who has no pets and who is ultimately a better employee doesn’t deserve an increase as much as you.

Increases are earned and are not handouts!

I’m sure most can agree that the above mentioned circumstances are generally the reason we start scrambling for more cash, so if you can now eliminate these reasons and you actually deserve an increase then go for it.

I suggest speaking to your HR manager first, find out if the timing is right, if it is then be professional with your approach, send an email requesting a meeting to discuss a revision of your salary.

In the meeting, look presentable, speak confidently and directly, have your ducks in a row, have a list of what you are putting into your current position, this would be great if it’s over and above what you were originally being paid for, whether it’s a case of targets being reached and blown out of the water, or overtime you constantly putting in without request or complaint.

If you feel you are truly not paid for your full worth, then sell it!

However, If your company is one that is good at recognizing your achievements and who compensates reasonably in the form of an increase on a yearly basis, then my personal advice would be to sit tight and have faith that once again you will receive the increase you so deserve!

But whatever you decide to do, I wish you all the luck ….. And let’s hope hard work is the winner in the end and you get what you are worth 🙂



About Sherina Shawe

"You have to do everything you can, you have to work your hardest, and if you do, if you stay positive, you have a shot at a silver lining." from: Silver Linings Playbook.

Relax, It is almost Year End

Relax, It is almost Year End


Relaxation tips for the Construction Industry


It is that time of year when everything starts to feel a little out of control.  If you are in the Construction industry, deadlines loom like ominous clouds just before the weekend and time seems to disappear into something akin to a black hole never to be recovered.  Small things get on your last nerve, there doesn’t seem to be enough coffee in your mug… ever!  No one else seems to appreciate the gravity of the depth of the situation you are in.  To add to that, some people seem to be in holiday mode already, which is really frustrating because it is somewhere you would very much like to be but just can’t seem to reach.


If it is any comfort. You are so close.


Feeling a similar inclination to run for the hills screaming, I went in search of some quick fixes to ‘chill out’ at the office and hopefully maintain some semblance of sanity for the remainder of the year.  Fast Company mentions a few pointers which seemed to help me gain some equilibrium, so I thought I would share it in hope of making the load lighter for you:


# One : Take time to look out the window.

Hartkopf found that people who sit near a window have 23% fewer complaints of stress-related illnesses such as headache, back pain, and exhaustion. “Windows provide stimulation — excitement, pleasure, and information,” he says, “Subconsciously, we need to know if it’s raining outside. ” Always choose an office with a view, even if you’re offered a larger, windowless office. If you’re stuck in a cubicle, make frequent trips past the lobby.


#Two : When exercising, do so Outside

After looking out the window all day, get outside! Eifert’s study shows that outdoor exercise reduces the level of stress hormones in the bloodstream, resulting in positive mood changes. “There’s more to exercise than just doing the exercise,” he says. “People who buy Nordic Tracks from TV rarely keep it up, because indoor settings don’t generate the positive effects on mood that outdoor settings do. ”


#Three : When working out, it’s okay to go slow

Dishman found that regardless of whether you exercise at 80% or 40% of capacity, the effect on stress is still the same as long as you work out for at least 20 to 30 minutes. “Not exercising is bad for your mental health, but there’s no consistent relation between the intensity of the physical activity and the psychological benefit,” he says. “For mental health, more is not necessarily better. ”


#4 : After your workout, take a few moments to relax

After an aerobic workout, Mardus suggests, find a place to lie down; close your eyes; listen to music or nothing; and enjoy the floating, narcotic effect of the endorphins you just released. This way you stay in an alpha state and get an almost meditative effect. It seems to last for 20 minutes or so. ” As you shower and head back to work you’ll slip into a beta brainwave state, which helps you shake that “I don’t care” feeling.


#5 : Change your mindset

Rosch says that we become stressed when we dwell on the problem instead of finding a solution. The trick is to look for ways to take control. His example: “Your 15-minute commute takes an hour each day because of traffic. You arrive at work completely wired from battling gridlock. Instead of getting mad at the traffic, come in an hour earlier and leave an hour earlier. If that’s not possible, get a cassette and use the time to learn a foreign language. Once you gain control over the situation, you’ve taken a very big step toward reducing stress. ”


While these tips are great, sometimes you are unable to get outdoors. Its just not possible and you are stuck in a cubicle or at your desk.  Some ‘quick fix’ stress busters to help this are:


1) Close your hands in a tight fist for 10 seconds and slowly open them. Repeat five times.

2) Roll your head from side to side. Repeat five times.

3) Tighten your toes, hold them for 10 seconds, and release. Repeat five times.


I think Fast Company has it right.  It is important to get some kind of physical activity happening to break the tension and be able to refocus. With time being an issue for most people, it is comforting to know that just 20 – 30 minutes a day can make a huge difference.  See it as a break from the stress and something that helps you to get in the right frame of mind rather than another thing to add to your list and you will be surprised at the effectiveness.


If we don’t get the chance to wish you happy holidays in person, I hope that your newfound stress busting habits carry through the holidays and that you have a relaxing and wonderful break.  Catch you on the flip side. Until 2015 …….




Who are the people you have just quoted?


Volker Hartkopf, architecture professor at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania and director of the Center for Building Performance and Diagnostics.

Georg Eifert, professor of clinical psychology at West Virginia University.

Rod Dishman, professor at the University of Georgia, has reviewed some 250 studies on the effects of physical exercise on stress.

Craig B. Mardus, author of “How to Stop Worry in One Second” (Warner Books, 1995), has spent 15 years researching stress while working at the Canyon Ranch Spa in Lennox, Massachusetts

Dr. Paul Rosch, president of the American Institute of Stress and a clinical professor of psychiatry at New York Medical College.







About Carmen Barends

Social Media adventurer exploring new frontiers and learning how to survive. Tongue in cheek and mischief are the order of any good day topped with a sprinkling of laughter.

Symbiosis through L2Q

posted in: How To 0



A remarkable pricing platform that is used by Contractors to send out price enquiries to Vendors / Suppliers when tendering for contracts, which has made an irrefutable impact with far reaching benefits for its users.


Here are some suggestions to the two major key players in this highly competitive industry we call CONSTRUCTION:

To the Vendors that receive the Requests for Quotes (RfQ’s):

  • Respond timeously to the RfQ’s by using our fast and easy online links.
  • Engage/negotiate/communicate with the Contractor. Be pro-active, contact the Contractor and enquire how competitive your prices are. This will stand you in good stead if the contract is awarded to the Contractor that has requested a price from you.
  • Become a Platinum Directory Listing (PDL) subscriber. You will be e-mailed award notifications on tenders that you have been requested to price on (so even if a contract has not been awarded to the Contractor that has requested a price from you, you now have been notified of the successful tenderer and can re-direct your quotation).
  • By being a PDL subscriber you have access to our very extensive Directory, make use of it by looking up companies and market yourself by sending out your company brochure/profile from our website, or if you prefer, make contact telephonically.



To the Contractors that send out the Requests for Quotes (RfQ’s):

  •  Acknowledge receipt of the quotations.
  • Engage/negotiate/communicate with the vendors/suppliers.
  • Acknowledge that you recognise and appreciate the time, effort and cost that goes into submitting a comprehensive quotation, thereby dispelling the vendors impression that you are using their prices as “cover prices”.
  • Use the RFQ functionality to communicate with the vendors that you have requested prices from.We strive to create value for our subscribers and recognise the vital role both the vendor and Contractor play in meeting each other’s requirements that are critical in each other’s successes.


So let’s foster healthy, mutually beneficial relationships based on solid long-term partnerships.  So why don’t the main Contractors hop onto the L2Q train and see how your tendering world will change? If you don’t, dare I say, you may kick yourself for not doing so.

About Lola Govender

My name is Lola Govender. I have been working at L2B for 9 years and am very passionate about our business.

Time to contact your contractor?

posted in: How To 0

Time to contact your Contractor



Have you ever wondered how a contractor chooses who he awards contracts to or how to get a contractor to notice you?


We went in search of possible answers from some of the industry leaders as to what they look for in a vendor and what the winning factor for them could be.


Construction moves fast!


It’s a fast paced industry in terms of carrying out the building works and having deadlines met.


Buyers don’t chase after vendors!


Contractors don’t like to be pestered. They don’t have time to sift through superfluous information. Have your documents together and ready to get the ball rolling. Contractors don’t become contractors because they love to communicate. They have more experience doing things a certain way and in a timeous manner.


No delays! If you are going to say that you will do something then do it!


If you state that you have priced or are going to price, send your prices through and make sure that they are sent on time. A contractor won’t stay in business unless he prices competitively. If your price is too high in comparison to the current market, he will get another quote for comparison.


It’s all about establishing good, trustworthy relationships with contractors and having the capacity to perform.


Contractors, yes as vendors know, have a preferred list but it’s NOT limited. Contractors DO try to blend in new blood. A contractor will look at past experiences to determine how companies and vendors market themselves, their quality of work, competence of staff and whether one can cope with regards to work volumes and requirements.


Just as we, as people, try to market ourselves for a new career, what candidate to vote for in an election, choose a life partner, it all involves a list – a list of various factors, criteria and considerations, which will benefit you, your company and your decisions in life in general.


Many thanks to Neels van Staden from Stefanutti Stocks Building for his assistance and insight.

About Chantélle Naudé

I have been with Leads 2 Business for 9 years, working in the Leads 2 Quotes department. Mother to two beautiful daughters.

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