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How to win electrical contracts: Top 4 Tips

January 28, 2022

Read our blog to learn more about how to effectively win electrical contracts to grow your business and win bigger clients.

The UK is currently experiencing a skills shortage, with the demand for electrical contractors exceeding the supply. 

In fact, an additional 15,000 fully qualified electricians will need to join the industry over the next five years to close the gap.

However, the good news for existing electricians is that it’s the perfect time to win new, high-value contracts. 

In this blog, we’ll guide you through the key steps you need to follow in the new business process to grow your electrical engineering business.

4 simple steps to winning electrical contracts 

Follow our steps to help win electrical service clients and grow your electrical business. 

1. Find the best opportunity for your business

The first step to winning more electrical work is finding a tender relevant to your services. 

A great place to start is by checking Contracts Finder or Find a Tender, where you can find all available public tender opportunities in the UK. 

You can search the website using keywords, so you don’t have to waste time searching through irrelevant tenders. 

There are three different contracting procedures you’ll need to be aware of: 

🗒️Open procedure 

An open procedure means that: 

✅Anyone can submit a tender

✅Clients cannot negotiate with bidders

✅There are no restrictions on when clients can use the above method, but they must evaluate all tenders 

Most clients use an open procedure for simple procurements. 

🗒️Restricted procedure 

A restricted procedure means that: 

✅Any interested parties can express an interest in bidding 

✅A client must invite a minimum of five suppliers to bid - provided enough candidates have applied 

✅Clients cannot negotiate with bidders, but they may clarify details and finalise terms

Again, there are no restrictions on when clients can use the above process. Usually, restricted procedures are suited to less stable markets where there are a number of competitors. 

🗒️Competitive dialogue 

Competitive dialogue means that: 

✅Companies shortlist candidates who respond to their advert

✅Only those selected are invited to bid 

✅Clients can negotiate with bidders to seek better offers 

Often, clients use competitive dialogue when they require a more tailored approach. 

For example, if the client’s organisation cannot use a ready-made solution or product due to the complexity of its requirements. 

Once you’ve found a tender you want to apply for, you’ll need to register your interest. 

In most cases, the client will likely issue you a pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ). 

A PQQ is designed to help a client shortlist applicants for the tender, so you’ll need to provide strong evidence that your company can take on the project. 

2. Complete the pre-qualification process (PQQ)

The questionnaire will cover topics such as: 

📝Experience level 

📝Geographical reach 

📝Financial information 

📝Past and current clients 

📝Insurance details 

Remember, the PQQ will serve as the client’s first impression of your company, so it’s worth spending time on it to ensure you cover the vital information you need to share.

If you’re successful, the client will invite you to tender for the contract officially. 

3. Invitation to tender (ITT)

At the ITT stage, the client will provide more detail on:

  • The scope of works 
  • Criteria 
  • Instructions 
  • An explanation of how they will assess applicants

Once you have carefully considered their requirements, you’ll need to pull together information about the following: 

📝Details about your company 

📝How you’ll approach the project

📝An estimate and breakdown of costs 

📝Your project management process 

This list isn’t exhaustive. Some clients may want you to include more information or have a preference for the format of your response. 

For example, you may have to upload answers via an online portal with a maximum word count. 

However, if you implement a field service management platform, you can easily gather crucial data to impress your clients. 

A CRM system will provide you with a comprehensive record of all previous jobs, cost centres, price lists, and more at the click of a button. 

4. Begin writing your bid

The next step is to write your bid. 

📝Open with a brief overview of your company’s qualifications and why you should win the contract.

📝Outline how you’ll carry out the project, answering each question concisely and backing up statements with facts and figures. 

📝Keep the focus on the client. Although you need to demonstrate your strengths as an organisation, they will want to read about how you can help them with their specific requirements. 

📝Search your bid document for the word ‘we’ and change to ‘you’ where appropriate. 

📝Once you’ve proofread your submission, you should submit it before or on the deadline. Late entries are likely to be ignored by the client, costing you time and a potential customer.

How can you simplify the tendering process with electrical contracting software? 

The tendering process can be lengthy and complex. 

As a result, it can be tempting to stick to one-off, ‘quick win’ jobs. But electrical companies should take advantage of today's high demand for electricians and bid for larger, higher-value contracts that will maintain a steady income stream. 

Streamline the tendering process 

The tendering process can be streamlined by ensuring you have the data you need to impress potential clients at hand. 

Cloud-based electrical contracting software allows you to view details such as: 

🧑‍🔧Who is working for you, and their qualifications 

🧑‍🔧Your assets, equipment and stock 

🧑‍🔧Your clients and their feedback 

🧑‍🔧Your health and safety procedures 

🧑‍🔧Payments and outstanding invoices

Having all of this information stored within a single platform eliminates the need to search through spreadsheets, paper documents, and various systems for crucial information. In addition, the information is updated in real time, so you have everything you need at your fingertips to provide a professional quote. 

Instead, you’ll have everything you need to write a persuasive bid and time left to focus on other activities that contribute directly to business growth. 

Implementing this software provides a 360˚ view of your customer’s accounts, allowing you to deliver positive customer experiences at every level thanks to an array of dynamic product features. 
Find out how BigChange can help your business, book a free demo today.

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