How to make the most of our Tenders?

posted in: Did You Know | 0

The Inside Scoop:

Ssssshhh, don’t tell the boss! I wanted to share some insider secrets with you. A brief look behind the scenes and into the research “engine room” of our company. I am hoping that you can use this information to your advantage. (wink, wink, nudge, nudge)

As you know, Leads 2 Business is keenly focussed on smarter ways to do and create business opportunities.This approach is not just about the information we deliver to you, but an integral part of our business ethos. Each month we capture literally thousands of tenders, yes, you read it correctly, THOUSANDS!

With this much tender information being pumped out on a daily basis, we have to find a smart and effective way to prioritise researching the subsequent tender awards.

How do we know?

Every Tender we send to you has an option to be monitored.
Monitoring a lead allows you to follow it through its life cycle
or assign it for follow-up within your team.

What is not so apparent is that we, in turn, use this monitoring
information as an indicator that this tender is important, creating
a priority flag back to the research team for follow-up.

It then becomes very important for you to monitor a tender!

How to Monitor a Tender

Monitoring a Tender can be done from selecting a recipient from the drop down box “Assigned to” on the tender.
Alternately, it can be done in bulk from the search results page first selecting which tenders you want to monitor, followed by “Actions”, “Monitor selection”. It will then present the same list of recipients as is available from the individual tender view pages.

Ways to get our attention

In the event you have not monitored a tender but still need the award information and the tender is now closed, you can email your request through from the tender page by clicking on “Request Award Information” button and someone from our research team will then follow up with you.

Tools you can use

There are more tools integrated into our tender notifications that we know will help you stay ahead. Specifically, our site inspection, follow-up and closing date reminders, which offer timeous alerts. An area for notes directly relating to the tender or contacts you may have reached out to. Our document collection and/or site attendance on your behalf through Infomessenger. (Gauteng only)

Making the most of your tenders is quite an exhaustive topic…

Here are the common points for consideration :

Subscribe

It may be seemingly obvious, but a valuable subscription to Leads 2 Business is a smart, streamlined approach.
We shoulder the cost of a research team and send you what is important to your business.

The number of filter combinations across categories, industries, geography and keywords creates a uniquely customised solution for your business lead pipeline. If you would like to know more about subscribing or taking a free trial, please send me an email on TarynD@L2B.co.za

Refine Your Profile

Making sure your profile on Leads 2 Business is tailored appropriately to your business requirements so that you get the lead information.

Your Advisory Settings Profile explicitly dictates what is received in the Daily Advisory email.

Steps to Action in Identifying opportunities


Go through the daily Advisory email thoroughly each day.

  • View the full details online.
  • Monitor & Request BoQ/ SI register/ Bidders Lists as soon as possible.
  • Set Reminders.
  • Email the researcher, if there are any discrepancies that you identify or if you need assistance.
  • Make Notes.
  • Download DTAs. (Daily Tender Advisory)
  • Keep a record of DTA numbers, instead of partial descriptions. This helps when searching.
  • Dismiss those unwanted DTAs, that are cluttering up your Search Result. (Be extra careful of dismissing DTAs by mistake)
  • Take advantage of our free online training, live support, telephonic support or in person training. (In person training is availble by appointment and only in selected areas)

Key Vocabulary to Understand:



  • Details Change:The details pertaining to the original tender have changed, please review the new details supplied in our notification.
  • Short Lead: This means there is a very short lead time or a very short time within which you can respond to this tender opportunity.
  • Awards: After the closing date, all the tenders are checked for basic compliance with the tender regulations. Non-compliant tenders are disqualified. The compliance of the products or services offered and the price is considered. Then all compliant tenders are listed in order of price. Those in the lowest price tender list are in the lowest price group. Preference points are given to suppliers on the list of lowest price tenders are first verified. Preference points are only awarded after the most expensive tenders have been excluded, as this makes the process faster and fairer. Those with verifiable information come out with the best preference points and are therefore awarded the contract.
  • Re-tenders: the issue of a second or subsequent request for tenders on a proposed contract.
  • Withdrawals: the contract has been withdrawn and there is no longer an opportunity to tender at this time.
  • Cancellations: the contract has been cancelled and there is no longer an opportunity to tender at this time.


About Taryn Duckham

I am a lover of marketing, customer centricity and the art of influence. Being able to effect this through analysis, content and front end design is part of my work, my great love of creatively solving problems that reach across as many parts of Leads 2 Business as I can.

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.

 “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.

General Safety in South Africa

posted in: Life Lessons, Safety | 0

Leads 2 Business : Safety

Crime in South Africa, like many other places in today’s world, can be a problem. Despite some negative perceptions about crime in South Africa, it’s generally safe & friendly, all you need to do is take sensible precautions & follow some general rules in order to stay safe.

 

Personal Safety Tips

  • Be aware of your surroundings
  • Avoid unfamiliar areas & walking alone
  • Avoid wearing/displaying valuables & large amounts of money
  • Take ATM Safety precautions
  • If you travel inform someone of your destination
  • Ensure that you know relevant emergency numbers
  • In a robbery situation, remain calm & do not resist
  • Take a self defense course
  • Don’t leave animals in the car
  • Trust your instincts at all times

 

Home Safety

  • Fencing & Gates
  • Alarm, CCTV & Intercom Systems
  • Dogs
  • Security Lighting
  • Ensure gates are locked at all times & keys/access devices are in a designated area

 

Vehicle Safety

  • Keep doors locked & windows closed
  • Do not leave valuables locked in the car
  • Park in well-lit places
  • If something seems suspicious, rather drive away
  • Vary the routes that you take & do not give strangers a lift
  • Ensure you have sufficient petrol
  • If you are in a road accident, drive to the nearest police station
  • Have your keys ready before approaching your vehicle
  • If you feel you are being followed, rather drive to the nearest police station

 

Safety Tips Unique to SA:

  • Look out for potholes
  • Beware of animals on the road & other native creepies and crawlies
  • Swimming in rivers can be dangerous due to hippos, crocodiles & bull sharks
  • Take Malaria precautions (repellents, nets)
  • Take Tick precautions (to prevent tick-bite fever)
  • Avoid drinking water from Rivers (Bilharzia & Cholera)
  • Sun protection (even on a cloudy day)
  • Beware of Remote Jamming
  • Beware of Taxi’s while driving/ walking
  • Keep updated on Load-shedding Schedules & take pro-active measures

 

Although it seems like you’ve just been handed a mountain of Safety Tips they are not there to prevent you from enjoying life. Keep them in mind & make them part of your daily routine & they will become effective habits before you know it.

Think of it like Dr George Cui, “Safety First, Then Healthy, then Happy, then Wealthy.”

 

P.S. Please add your Safety Tips in the comments section below.

 

Further Reading:

https://www.travelground.com/blog/10-ridiculous-commonly-asked-questions-south-africa/

 

 

 

 

About Sasha Anderson

I enjoy making new professional acquaintances and corresponding with existing clients. Reach out if you want to talk, L2B, social media, construction, technology, shoes, dachshunds, popular culture or travel.

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

 

Sources:
http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newHTE_00.htm
https://ascendtraining.wordpress.com/2014/12/03/competencies-of-great-supervisors-part-13-time-management/
http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/top-time-management-tips0.html
https://ascendtraining.wordpress.com/2014/12/03/competencies-of-great-supervisors-part-13-time-management/
http://www.cimaglobal.com/Thought-leadership/Newsletters/Insight-e-magazine/Insight-2012/Insight-October-2012/First-things-first-prioritising-tasks-for-better-time-management/
http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifehack/20-quick-tips-for-better-time-management.html

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.