Pricing Online – RfQs

78-Blog-Header-Pricing-Bills-of-Quantity-Online

Have you ever received one of these and wondered why?

RFQ

The reason you have received an RfQ email is because you are listed on our Directory as a Vendor. We have Buyers (main contractors) who subscribe to our Leads 2 Quotes platform who use our Directory to select Vendors to send RfQ’s to.

Basically these Buyers send us BoQ’s for each relevant contract. We (L2Q Bills staff) process these BoQ’s by formatting them and splitting each item into the relevant trades (which may sound simple but can often take many hours to decipher). The Buyers, using our Directory, select a trade and region and a list of the relevant Vendors under that Trade and Serviceable Region appear, they select who they want to send to and click ‘Send RfQ’. You (the Vendor) will then receive an RfQ email (as above).

You have received this email, now what?

Firstly you need to check if the RfQ you have received is relevant to what your company does. If not, you will need to click on the “Update my Trade Profile”.

If the items are of relevance and you would like to price you can click on “Intend to Price”. If the items are of relevance but you are unable to quote for that time period (see respond by date/start date) you can click on “Decline to Price”. This will indicate to us (L2B) and the Buyer (who’s details are listed on the top right hand corner of the email) whether you will or won’t be pricing.

You’ve decided to Price the RfQ, where to next?

You will need to go ahead and work out the relevant rates required. Remember to take note of the Buyers T’s & C’s as some of these may specify whether VAT should be exclusive or inclusive and whether delivery or labour should be included. If you require Drawings in order to price you can click on the “Drawings” link in order to view or download the drawings. If there are no drawings on that link you will need to contact the Buyer. It is vital to note that we only have the information that the Buyers have provided. Any additional information required that is not available online, will have to be requested directly from the Buyer by the Vendor.

In order to use any of the L2B online features you will need your Vendor login details (Registration is Free). If you cannot remember these or have never registered as a Vendor you are welcome to contact us, via email, telephonically or via our Live Help option in order to request assistance.

Once you have all your relevant rates you can then go ahead and choose how you would like to respond to the RfQ. You could choose Fax, Email or Online Pricing, please note that Online Pricing is the quickest and easiest.

You’ve (wisely) chosen to use Online Pricing, where do you start?

You can use Online Pricing by clicking on the “Price Online Now” link which will take you to the L2B website where you will log in using your Vendor login details.

Once logged in you select the Vendor Home page on the Home drop-down. Your Active RfQ’s will now be displayed where you can click on “Submit Price” next to the relevant contract number and you will be redirected to enter your T’s & C’s, after submitting, the “Pricing” page will be displayed where you can simply enter your rates for each item which are automatically multiplied by the quantity to give a total and a grand total in red at the bottom. You are also able to interact with the other tabs as their relevance requires. Once you are happy with everything you can click on “Submit Prices”, ticking the “Send a copy to my email” box if you would like to keep a copy of the pricing you have submitted.

What do you do once you’ve submitted your prices?

Once the contract is awarded you will receive a notification via email. If the Buyer who sent you the original RfQ is awarded the contract you can now follow up with them regarding the prices you previously submitted to see if they will require your services and how competitive your prices were. If the contract is awarded to a different contractor you can still contact them and offer to send them your prices (you should have a copy if you selected to send a copy to your email) or by logging into your L2Q Vendor Profile and clicking on the relevant “Download Sent Bill” icon.

Receiving and responding to RfQ’s has never been easier with Leads 2 Business Online Pricing.

Want to know more about being a Vendor/Buyer, our Platinum Directory Listing (PDL), Leads 2 Quotes (L2Q) or any of the other Services we offer? Contact me on SashaA@L2B.co.za

About Sasha Anderson

Millennial Mom + wife living the hash-tag life

What you didn’t realise about the difference between Public and Private Tenders

64-Blog-Header-What-is-the-difference-between-Government-and-Private-Tenders

Public Tenders vs Private Tenders

 

The difference between public tenders and private tenders is that public tenders are advertised in the public domain and are open to the public, and private tenders aren’t.

 

Can I go home now?

No.

Right….

 

The first problem is the terminology. Public vs open, private vs closed etc. I tend to favour “Public” and “Invited” when describing the difference between these two types of tenders. “Private” can be misconstrued. When someone asks me after a “private” tender, my first question is; are they looking for tenders from Private entities (which could be public or invited) or do they mean “invited” tenders? Private entities make use of publicly advertised tenders as well. Not a lot to be perfectly honest, but it is a way for them to freshen up their supply chain. So for the sake of clarity, I’m going to stick to “Public” and “Invited”.

Public tenders are predominately Government. That is literally the entire point of Government Procurement. The Government is spending the “People’s money”, so it better be out in the public domain where everyone and their uncle can have their say. [tweetthis]The five pillars are: Value for Money, Open and Effective Competition, Ethics and Fair Dealing, Accountability and Reporting, and Equity.[/tweetthis]  “Open and Effective Competition” is represented by the public aspect of advertising your tender notices. These tender notices are advertised in newspapers (not for very much longer, apparently), eTenders, Government Tender Bulletin, Provincial Tender Bulletins, Government websites, Provincial websites, Municipal websites and Notice Boards. The information is out there to be found. If you can find it, then you can participate. Anyone can rock up to a site meeting or a tender closing; no one can stop you. However, the award is very much dependent on how you fulfill the specific criteria required. Anyone can play the game, but only the professional and serious have an actual shot at winning. Plus, generally fly-by-nights and chancers are not appreciated or tolerated. So don’t be one of these. Just don’t.

 

Public tender notices can be advertised by private entities/ companies as well. It isn’t very common, like I said; but it does happen. Most private entities have their own Supply Chain Management Department and processes. This department handles the supply chain process for that company. Does the company need a cleaning company or a new security company? Does the furniture need replacing? Are they considering building a new headquarters? These are the same types of questions that Government has to deal with, but it’s not out there for all to see. The private entities will usually utilise their tried and tested methods that they’ve been using for years. This rarely involves advertising to the public. The most common tool I’ve come across, is the Supply Chain Database. Private companies would have their own database that they maintain. They approach those companies listed, as they would already have a history with that company so there’s a certain sense of trust and expectation of product or service. Private entities, just like Government, do not want to be wasting their time and money on chancers. How do you get listed on a private entity’s database? Ask! Do you have a Supplier Database? Yes, awesome. Who do I send my company details to? What’s the procedure? You will never learn, if you don’t ask.

 

Unlike public tenders, invited tenders are generally only heard about after the fact. You tend to hear about them from your mates’ brother’s sister-in-law who overhead it at a bar brawl. Like bread crumbs scattered in the wind, and you have to chase them back to the source. Invited tenders are held very close to the chest. This, unfortunately, gives them a bit of a shady reputation. Not necessarily the case, since companies nowadays have time considerations and budgets that don’t really allow for un-invited delays and inclusions. The sad fact is, if you weren’t invited; then be prepared to be bounced from the party.

 

Government utilises invited tenders as well. Which is a neverending source for debate and scandalous speculation. When it’s all on the up and up, simply time and money are against going out to public tender. For example: an Emergency. When an actual emergency occurs, say a natural disaster, nobody is going to tolerate the Government or a Municipality going out to public tender. Why? It takes too long. So tenders are invited. Where would the contractors be sourced from, you ask? The applicable Supplier Database. Verbal quotes, or more likely written quotes are called for. In emergencies, the aim is to fix the problem as quickly and efficiently as possible to prevent further issues. Bear in mind, that all decisions related to this situation would have to be recorded. All decisions concerning Supply Chain Management, have to be recorded. Otherwise, a certain word starts surfacing “misappropriation”.

 

It’s also interesting to note, that “lack of planning” does not constitute an emergency. If suddenly a pen cannot be found in your Municipality for love nor money, then this is not an emergency but terrible terrible planning. It’s pencils for you, until the tender can be awarded.

 

Invited tenders can be the chosen form of procurement when specialty works or products are required. Supply Chain Departments are supposed to have an idea of who can do what for them. It they know that there’s stacks of suppliers of a certain product, then it’ll be open competitive bidding for them. But if they know there’s only two companies that can supply a certain product, it’s not viable to go out to public tender. Both companies are invited to tender, and one is awarded. There’s cases where there’s only one supplier/ contractor. That guy gets asked to price. It’s too costly and too time consuming to go out to public tender, when you already know who your suppliers could be. This actually implies that there’s a bit of common sense being utlilised in the Government. Someone actually hoped to save money and time, by not relying on mindless bureaucracy. Treasury Regulation 16A6.4 comes into play, but it has to be recorded and reported. Everything has to be recorded and reported.

 

Invited tenders can also be the result of other supply chain processes: Panels, Pre-Qualifications and Expression of Interests (EOI). These are the most common. Think of it as a gathering of potential suppliers/ contractors. They are assessed and then invited to tender. Generally, the pre-qualification/ EOI are out in the public domain. But the invited tenders will be behind the scenes. I tend to see these for long term projects, where a certain aim is hoping to be achieved. The idea being that if the Government wants to refurbish an entire Province’s schools (for example), then going out to tender for each individual school is just nuts. Get a group of potential pre-qualified contractors together in one go, and then divvy the jobs out as budgets and time allows.

 

When hoping to do business, hedge your bets.

 

If you want to work with a private company, talk to them. If you want to continue working with the Government, talk to them as well. Whether it’s public tender notices or invited, information is key.

 

 

http://www.treasury.gov.za/legislation/pfma/supplychain/General%20Procurement%20Guidelines.pdf

http://www.treasury.gov.za/divisions/ocpo/sc/Guidelines/SCM%20Jan900-Guidelines.pdf

 

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

A day in the life of a Tenders Researcher

Leads 2 Business : A day in the life of a Tenders Researcher

2 Metaphors for a Tender Researchers day

 

The first instinct when faced with the task of describing “A Day in the Life of a Researcher” is to list the various tasks and duties that have to be done throughout the day, and the week, the month and the year. The fact that the light slowly drains from my brother’s eyes when I waffle about my day, is a clear indication that this might not be the best approach. It’s not that he doesn’t care about what I do (I pay his bills, so he has a vested interest), it’s that the “how” has no context for someone on the outside. The usual follow up question is “It got done, right?” is a clear indication that the “how” is not as important as the end result.

 

“Researcher Sympathy” only comes from other researchers. Like “Accountant Sympathy” only comes from those who inhabit the daunting world of debits and credits. How long can you feign interest in that?

 

No one on the “outside” really cares how many phone calls you made, or how many people you had to speak to and introduce yourself to and state your purpose to and how far you had to stretch the definition of “polite and professional” for the information that is our bread and butter. If you aren’t in the trenches with us, then you can’t really understand the perseverance required sometimes. And if you’ve been nodding your head knowingly through that last sentence, then I hate to break it to you; but you are a Researcher. How many times today have you spelt “L-E-A-D-S, like leading someone”?

 

I reread my blog article “Understanding Awards” from 29 October 2014 for some sort of inspiration, and I’m happy to announce, nothing has changed. The same challenges and concerns, the same misapprehension and suspicion we faced back then is alive and well today. So how do I convey the energy spent and the time taken, without boring the life out of you or utilising the “humblebrag”.

 

[tweetthis]Our business is information. Fast and accurate information. [/tweetthis]This information takes the form of leads or doorways of opportunity, as you will. We present it, and our subscribers run with it.

 

Think of our day like a race.

There’s a starting point and an end (metaphorical because, especially on a Friday, it definitely feels like it will never end). And all along the way there’s certain checkpoints that have be reached and ticked off the list. Tender notices are meant to have a certain regularity to them. The Government Tender Bulletin is published each Friday, for example. If we don’t reach these checkpoints, we have to go in search of them or keep coming back until we can tick them off the list.

Think of it like an Easter egg hunt, where someone is constantly hiding Easter eggs.

Doesn’t tell you how many eggs there are but assures you that they are in fact out there. And sometimes hides the eggs in the same place that you’ve already searched over and over again at irregular intervals. And your phone won’t stop ringing while you are searching for these eggs, and some of the eggs are cracked. And then there’s Scam eggs. And you get the picture.

 

This race (I’m mixing my metaphors) is not a straight line, but a circle. It just starts again. And on the information ride, there’s nowhere to get off. These checkpoints can represent anything really. They are the newspapers we buy (maybe not for much longer according to National Treasury) and the websites we check. They’re the telephone calls and emails needing to be answered. They are our current subscribers and potential subscribers. They are the tender awards and award follow ups. Illusive site registers, bidder’s list, bills of quantity and tender documents.

 

It’s a bizarre balance between maintaining routine and consistency and then trying to adapt to the unexpected. Anything can throw a spanner in the works, from Municipal strikes to newspaper delivery to a slow internet connection. The balance between expectation and reality. It’s only experience and willingness that has taught us how to deal with these bumps in the road. The metaphorical duck on water comes to mind. Except the duck has developed Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and an unhealthy obsession with internet speed.

 

The long and the short of it is, that we deliver.

 

You don’t have to worry about the “how” because we’ve got that covered.

About Claire Donaldson

I started working at Leads 2 Business in February 2005, and have served as Head of Department of Daily Tenders from 2007 until the present. I oversee both the Daily Tenders South Africa and Africa Departments.

Why be Revolutionary?

 

Leads 2 Business : Alternative Energy

 

I have enjoyed music all my life. There is no doubt that it plays an integral part of who I am. I enjoy anything from classical to rock to indie to reggae to alternative. In my choice alone, some would consider me a little unconventional. But that isn’t where it ends. I enjoy (exceptional) tattoos and consider it wearable art. Perhaps a little nonconformist I hear you say? Not to mention I like the idea of eco houses, container housing and other non standard building methods. Just because it is different, it doesn’t mean it is wrong. In fact, sometimes different can be exceptionally right.

I think most South Africans have gotten a good few picnic dinners with candles of late. Some relish the opportunity to ‘unplug’ from life and make the most of quality time with loved ones, while others lament lost time and money and the effect it is having on the economy.  I am fairly certain that Companies retailing solar panels, solar geysers and lights as well as generators thank Eskom profusely for their increase in revenue. Flipping a switch to only find yourself still standing in the dark, in winter especially, definitely brings you to looking at alternative methods of getting things done and wondering how long we, as a nation, can continue on this (dark) road.

 

We all know that our amazing nation has an abundance of natural resources. So why not utilise them? Enter the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (try say that fast five times over) aka REIPPP.  Say what? Well, the IPP procurement programme has been designed to contribute towards the target of 3725 Megawatts and socio economic and environmentally sustainable growth as well as to stimulate the renewable industry in South Africa.

 

The qualifying technologies in this programme are:

  • onshore wind
  • concentrated solar thermal
  • solar photovoltaic
  • biomass solid
  • biogas
  • landfill gas
  • small hydro

 

According to The Guardian ‘South Africa has been quietly creating one of the world’s most progressive alternative energy plans. Solar, biomass and wind energy systems are popping up all over the country and feeding clean energy into the strained electrical grid’. It seems that South Africa is taking revolutionary leaps forward in implementing clean energy solutions, but it also has the general view that it should be closely monitored.

The REIPP have recently added to their renewable projects currently underway in South Africa.  Some of these include:

 

Wind

  • Construction of the 140MW Roggeveld Wind Farm. The wind farm will be situated on farms surrounding Sutherland, in the Northern Cape. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement REIPPP programme.
  • Construction of the 117MW Golden Valley Wind Farm located outside Cookhouse, in the Eastern Cape Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.
  • Construction of the Riverbank Wind Energy Facility: Phase 1 entails the construction and operation of a wind energy facility and associated infrastructure. This is also known as the Wesley-Ciskei (33 MW) which forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement REIPPP programme.

 

Biomass

  • Construction of a 25M biomass-to-power plant, known as Ngodwana Biomass Power Project, located at Sappi’s Ngodwana mill, outside Nelspruit in the Mpumalanga Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement REIPPP programme.

 

Solar Photovoltaic

  •  Construction of the 40MW Aggeneys Solar Photovoltaic (PV) energy facility located outside Aggeneys, in the Northern Cape Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.
  • Construction of the 75MW Konkoonsies 2 Solar Photovoltaic (PV) energy facility located near Upington, in the Northern Cape Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.
  • Construction of the 75MW Dyason’s Klip 1 Solar Photovoltaic (PV) energy facility located near Upington, in the Northern Cape Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.
  • Construction of the 75MW Dyason’s Klip 2 Solar Photovoltaic (PV) energy facility near Upington, in the Northern Cape Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.
  • Construction of the 75 MW Droogfontein 2 solar photovoltaic (PV) plant and all associated infrastructure on the Farm Droogfontein, in Kimberley, Northern Cape Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.
  • Construction of the 82.5MW Pulida solar photovoltaic park. The planned capacity will be 82.5 MWp DC – 75 mw ac and will be located on remainder portion of farm Klipdrift 20, Letsemeng local municipality, Xhariep district municipality, Free State province. This forms part of the REIPPP – Window 3 Projects.
  • Construction of the 75MW Sirus Solar Photovoltaic (PV) energy facility. The facility will be situated approximately 20km southwest of Upington, in the Northern Cape. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.

 

Hydro

  • Construction of the 5MW Kruisvallei Hydo located near Bethlehem, in the Free State Province. This forms part of the Window 4 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (REIPPP) programme.

 

I have heard the expression that ‘it’s never too late’ to start something. In the case of Eskom, I am sure some feel like they may be testing the boundaries of this expression. The point though, is that something is being done. Something quite revolutionary at that! So I for one, want to keep an eye on the array of projects to keep up to date with South Africa’s progressive steps toward creating clean energy for our overworked grid. I also think that it is maybe time that I start figuring out how to be part of doing something idiosyncratic in my nation instead of being part of the problem.  #Justsaying

 

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.

Get your Golf Swing on

We are counting the hours…

It’s usually hard to stay focused the last week before our Annual Golf Day. There is so much to organise for the actual day to make sure our Subscribers have an absolutely amazing experience. It makes it kind of tough to focus on doing your everyday tasks as well. But we are fortunate in that we have a team that is dedicated to the cause and always seem to pull the proverbial rabbit (or backhoe) out of a hat. Along with the amazing staff at Randpark Golf Club, we are going to make this year extra special because it is the 10th Golf Day held by Leads 2 Business (which in anyone’s books means celebration time). Meaning it’s a sentimental occasion and  those at L2B will add extra ‘oomph’ to make sure that this is a day that our subscribers won’t easily forget.

 

The day commences with our subscribers being greeted with goodie bags by our lovely staff and registering to start their golf day. Then, as they step out they may happen upon the Audi Q5 (that we have sponsored) hoisted into the air with a crane sponsored by Eqstra. This acrobatic feat is in fact the prize for the person who can achieve a Hole in One on the 15th. That is quite something #JustSaying. Our Sponsors have gone out of their way planning their stands on both Tee and Green to keep the subscribers well hydrated (and highly entertained) along the course. You can see from some of the photos of the stands by sponsors in previous years what we mean. This year’s supporters also got additional branding by having their logos displayed as proud sponsors on an insert in Engineering News supplied by Leads 2 Business. To make sure you and your Company get extra brand coverage, we also encourage our subscribers to log onto social media and post pictures of their day. Tag us on Twitter at @L2Bcoza or the hashtag #L2BGolf or find Leads 2 Business on Facebook. Watch out for those selfies 🙂

In the evening, once our intrepid golfers have driven, chipped and putted to their hearts content, there is an amazing dinner and prize giving hosted by Emcee Dave Usendorff who is a fellow PGA Professional, Operations Director at The Els Club Copperleaf, Supersport Presenter and absolute golf nut!! (his words, not mine). You can check him out on Twitter as well at @DaveUsendorff.

 

After the festivities of the day and the evening our valued subscribers head off for the weekend with an armload of goodies and grins on their faces and (hopefully) many good memories. On this note though, over the years we have picked up a few golf tips and thought we would mention them to maybe assist in the smooth running of your game.

 

Tip 1: No matter how bad your last shot was, the worst is yet to come. This law does not expire on the 18th hole, since it has the supernatural tendency to extend over the course of a tournament, a summer and, eventually, a lifetime.

Tip 2: Your best round of golf will be followed almost immediately by your worst round ever. The probability of the latter increases with the number of people you tell about the former.

Tip 3: Brand new golf balls are water-magnetic. Though this cannot be proven in the lab, it is a known fact that the more expensive the golf ball, the greater its attraction to water.

Tip 4: Golf balls never bounce off trees back into play. If one does, the tree is breaking a law of the universe and should be cut down.

Tip 5: No matter what causes a golfer to muff a shot, all his playing partners must solemnly chant, “You looked up,” or invoke the wrath of the universe.

Tip 6: The higher a golfer’s handicap, the more qualified he deems himself as an instructor.

Tip 7: Every par-three hole in the world has a secret desire to humiliate golfers. The shorter the hole, the greater its desire.

Tip 8: Topping a 3-iron is the most painful torture known to man.

Tip 9: Kikuyu grass eats golf balls.

Tip 10: Sand is alive. If it isn’t, how do you explain the way it works against you?

 

 See you on the course.

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

http://www.tensionnot.com/jokes/golf_jokes/golf_tips_beginners

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.

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