Issue Date: 
Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Tender Experience - Do I need it?

A regular question asked is “I am interested in registering a CC, specifically to apply for government tenders. I don't have any experience in business let alone in tendering, so I want to find out if one can be awarded a tender if he/she does not have specific experience?”

Firstly, unfortunately you cannot register a CC (Closed Corporation) in South Africa anymore - you will have to register some other juristic person such as a private company.

The tender processes in South Africa are governed by:

  • The Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act;
  • Preferential Procurement Regulations, 2011;
  • National Treasury’s Supply Chain Regulations;
  • General Procurement Guidelines.

According to these Acts and Regulations, Competitive Bids - as tenders are legally called in South Africa - must be evaluated on either the 90/10 or 80/20 Preference Points Scoring System. All Government tender responses must be evaluated on one of these two systems if it has passed the Functionality test.

The Functionality test determines if a bidder has the capabilities to execute the contract or not. During the Functionality test the bidders are tested on various aspects of the contract to establish the extent of their capabilities. Bidders are mostly tested on the following criteria during the Functionality test:

  1. Experience: the Procuring Entity - either Public or Private Sector - wants to know how many years’ experience the bidders has in order to execute the contract;
  2. Human Resources: the bidder must indicate if it has the human manpower, with the necessary experience and expertise to successfully comply with the requirements of the contract;
  3. Financial capabilities: Procuring Entities are hesitant to award a contract to anyone who doesn’t have the required capital available in order to successfully execute the contract.
  4. Other functionality criteria: usually the Procuring Entity will require other Functionality criteria that are specific to the goods or services that they want to procure. For example: if the Procuring Entity needs a construction company, the bidder will have to be registered with the Construction Industry Development Board.. If the bidder is not registered with the CIBD then the bid response will be marked as non-responsive.

During the Functionality test bidders will score points on the different Functionality criteria. Each Functionality criteria will have a weight in points. The weight of each functionality criteria will be dependent on the importance of the criteria in the contract. Thus, you will find that Experience can have a higher score than Human Resources and so on.. All competitive bids will have a minimum number of points that needs to be scored by the bidder in order to progress to the next phase of evaluation namely the Preference Points Scoring system. Only those bidders that reach the minimum threshold, which can be anything between 60 and 90 points out of a 100 points, will advance to the next phase.

So, to answer the question, will you will be awarded a tender if you have no experience is a simple: NO, you won’t. The Procuring Entity must apply the abovementioned Acts and Regulations in evaluating bid responses and automatically disqualify bid responses that do not have the necessary experience.

There are some Government Entities that have committed themselves to procure a certain percentage of goods and services from start-up enter but these bids are hard to find and there are many businesses that respond to them. This means that your chances of being the successful bidder are slim.

Find something that you are good at and start a small business and once you have gained some experience you can start responding to quotations and bids.

Get proper training in the art of responding to quotations and competitive bids by attending the How-to-Tender workshops (www.how2tender.com).

Earn to learn!

Title Closing Date Tender No.
Tenders are invited to provide Lumion Essentials Training 2017-12-04 11:00 CSQ11171189
Supply: Gloves 2017-11-29 10:00 GA1180192A
Tenders are invited to provide Revit Advanced Training 2017-12-04 11:00 CSQ11171189
Tenders are invited to provide Revit Intermediate Training 2017-12-04 11:00 CSQ11171189
Supply 20 each x harness; weedeater 2017-11-28 10:00 GA1180193A
Tenders are invited to provide Revit Essentials Training 2017-12-04 11:00 CSQ11171189
Supply: Plants 2017-11-28 16:00 GC11800356
Bidders are invited to provide training for Intermediate Leadership Programme 2017-12-04 11:00 CSQ11171187
Bidders are invited to Repair Scrubber Machine for Fresh produce market Scope of Work 2017-12-04 11:00 CSQ11171187
Supply Klorman Cartridges for Water Purifying 2017-11-28 16:00 GC11800357
Manufacture, Supply and Commissioning of an Inkjet Printing System to Upgrade an Existing Wide Web Printing Press at the Government Printing Works. 2018-01-15 11:00 GPW- M 361
Appointment of a service provider to render hygiene services for the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform: Office of the Chief Registrar of Deeds, Deeds Registry Pretoria, Chief Surveyor General and Surveyor General for a period of 36 months 2017-12-15 11:00 DRDLR (CRD- 08) 2017/ 18
Supply and print ambulance return books x 600 units 2017-12-01 11:00 ZNQ 459/ 17/ 18
Supply and Deliver Bark Chips to City Parks Depot , Sacks Circle Drive Bellville South. 2017-11-28 16:00 GC11800358
Stationery items 2017-12-01 11:00 ZNQ 130 / 2017/ 2018
Appointment of a service provider to render Security Services in Klerksdorp Regional Office for a period of 24 months 2018-01-05 11:00 DMR/ 018/ 2017/ 18
Appointment of three service providers to supply and deliver fresh fruit as and when required over a period of twenty four months (24) . 2017-12-15 11:00 NRFNZG- 027- 2017/ 18
Supply carbolic soap 2017-11-28 16:00 GC11800360
Appointment of a service provider to render Security Services in Rustenburg Regional Office for a period of 24 months 2018-01-05 11:00 DMR/ 019/ 2017/ 18
Appointment of two service providers to supply and deliver fresh and processed vegetables as and when required over a period of one (1) year 2017-12-15 11:00 NRFNZG- 028- 2017/ 18

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Functionality and Tenders

In all competitive bids (tenders) you as the bidder will have to respond to Functionality. You will need to score a set minimum number of points, measured as a percentage, on Functionality of a competitive bid (tender) in order to advance to the next phase of evaluation in the tender process.

Usually Organs of State evaluate competitive bids (tenders) as follows:

  • The tender response is evaluated on Functionality where the bidder must score points out of a maximum of 100 points.
  • A threshold of between 65 to 75 out of 100 points... Read More
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