Categories
Bid process

Bidonomy’s top blogs of 2020

We’re quite pleased that the word cloud we’ve created above, from all our published blogs, has team, client, process and content front and centre – quite rightly the factors that underpin every bid!

In terms of readership numbers, these were our top ten blogs of 2020…clearly, everyone’s as into (or frustrated by?!) linguistics as we are! Although also very proud to see the ode to Tommy Caldwell’s free climb up The Dawn Wall of Yosemite so high up the list – a personal favourite blog.

  1. Apostrophe Rage: or, how I learned to love the Oxford comma  
  2. The Redundant That
  3. To bid, or not to bid
  4. The Dawn Bid: Free climbing the bid process
  5. Setting up and managing an effective content library
  6. A brief history of bidding: Past, present and future
  7. Once Upon A Bid
  8. When is Best Practice not best practice?
  9. The Right Team, or the ‘Their Turn’ Team?   
  10. The Great Exec Summary Debate

When Bidonomy was set up in June 2020, we had no idea how well received the blogs would be. We’d like to thank everyone who took the time to read and engage with us, and who took part in several polls we ran on LinkedIn.

Happy New Year!

Categories
Bid process

The 12 Days of Bidmas

On the first day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… a double G&T.

On the second day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the third day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the fourth day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the fifth day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the sixth day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… six clarifications, five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the seventh day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… seven client examples, six clarifications, five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the eighth day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… eight fee proposals, seven client examples, six clarifications, five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the ninth day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… nine compliance questions, eight fee proposals, seven client examples, six clarifications, five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the tenth day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… ten detailed bios, nine compliance questions, eight fee proposals, seven client examples, six clarifications, five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the eleventh day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… eleven colour graphics, ten detailed bios, nine compliance questions, eight fee proposals, seven client examples, six clarifications, five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a double G&T.

On the twelfth day of Bidmas, my bid lead gave to me… twelve days till deadline, eleven colour graphics, ten detailed bios, nine compliance questions, eight fee proposals, seven client examples, six clarifications, five val-ue adds. Four hundred pages, three hard copies, two hours sleep, and a doub-le G-&-T!

Happy holidays everyone!

With additional thanks to Victoria Lee for her help in composition.

Categories
Procurement

A brief history of bidding: the past, present and future

As a bit of a history geek, the joint celebrations this past weekend of America’s independence and 72 years of the UK’s NHS got me thinking about the history and future of bidding (lockdown is obviously taking its toll…) But in all serious, how did bidding for goods and services start? When were the first contracts awarded? And how has the industry grown since?

Given what we know about their civilisation, it probably won’t come as a shock that the first indications of procurement were seen with the Egyptians around 3,000 BC. While there was, of course, no formal tender and award process, the Egyptians used scribes to record and manage the materials used to build pyramids; recording the requirements and monitoring their fulfilment on papyrus rolls. Ancient coins – now often on display in their hundreds in museums – provide a history of the trades that took place all over the ancient world. Where the coins were manufactured, versus where they are discovered, shows us where the supply and demand came from.

Much of the early formal acquisition of goods and services has its origins in military logistics, where the historical custom of “foraging and looting” was taken on by military quartermasters (the term dating from the 1600s) to ensure troops had the equipment they needed. Procurement as we know it was not really recognised until the 19th century, when Charles Babage’s 1832 book, ‘On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures’ documented the need for a “materials man in the mining sector who selects, purchases and tracks goods and services required”; a central procurement function.

Fast forward to the 21st century. According to BidStats, in the last eight months nearly 41,000 UK public sector contract notices have been issued, with 1,000 contract award notices in the last week alone*. Coming to more prominent public awareness in recent months, the World Health Organisation (WHO) says it awarded over 2,000 contracts in 2019, at a combined value of nearly $90 million – a 200% increase in volume from 2017. And these numbers are from just two awarding bodies/sectors. A total volume and value of bids published and awarded is, unsurprisingly, difficult to tie down – but will no doubt have too many zeroes to be displayed on a normal calculator!

Cities continually reinvent themselves as urban life changes…by offering ever more inventive goods and services

The percentage increase experienced by the WHO is not alone; the volume, and value, of contracts published and awarded will only continue to rise – albeit we will expect to see changes in focus and subject as technology and industry sectors move ever forward, adapting to global needs and aiming to improve quality of life. In his book ‘Triumph of the City’, Edward Glaeser, Professor of Economics at Harvard University, argues that cities continually reinvent themselves as urban life changes; industries (and individual companies) prosper by early identification of these changes, responding by offering ever more inventive goods and services.

No wonder we all love bidding so much – just look at the vibrant, ever-adapting and ever-growing industry we are part of.

*As a side note, other data and graph enthusiasts should check out the Analysis Charts section of BidStats for UK public sector contract notices and awards split by week, region, type, value, sector and CPV code keywords. #LoveAChart