Finding Opportunities

Focus on Growth

Public Sector Contracts – Finding Opportunities

Portals provide information on contract opportunities, valued at billions of pounds each year. This week for example 501 opportunities.

The sectors include:

123 opportunities with values over £1,000,000. Therefore, are Small and Medium Sized businesses growing into these contracts?

Repeating Opportunity Searches

It is strange how as a business with direct sales employees there is an expectation that contract sizes and complexity continue to grow. Contrast that with Public Sector Tender Opportunities, the experience repeats itself, the same contracts, same value and little difference in delivery.

Consequently there is a growing issue! Experienced Medium Sized Companies compete with micro and small businesses for the same market share. Failing to use the experience gain to fuel business development and growth.

Contract volume – the number of similar contracts is an indication of atrophy, both financial and development.

Create the Strategy

Develop the ratio approach. Every three small contracts generates interest in one new contract double the size. For example, three contracts valued at £75,000 pa amount to £225,000 turnover, therefore adding a new contract at £150,000pa is a reasonable step.

This method applies is the small contracts are £15,000 in annual value – the principle remains the same lay the trifold foundation and continue to grow.

Create Economies of Scale

Winning Contracts from the incumbent provider is easier than businesses realize because there is a failure to accept the need for reduced infrastructure costs. As each new contract is added the core costs necessarily reduce, however, businesses tend to leave the costs where they are. Pay attention to the detail.

The example that springs to mind linked to the HR costs of a cleaning company, the rate for the first 24 employees is fixed, from 25 to 100 again the rate is fixed. So the company paid £1,000 to the HR consults per month for the first 100 employees. However, the real cost of employees reduced as new staff were recruited. Therefore, the hourly rate failed to reflect that reduction.

Be clear with the bid or tender writing team on cost centres, consequently, these minor economies of scale win contracts, increase margins and keep the content fresh.

Conclusion

  1. Expand the knowledge of opportunities.
  2. Increase the value
  3. Find the economies of scale – every penny counts
  4. Keep opportunity selection at the heart of the business development strategy
  5. Grow with confidence

Contact

Public Tenders

Competitive Public Tenders cause so many headaches for business.

Experience in the EU demonstrated that UK Business had not prepared. Small Business took time to capture a real market share.

Now there is an opportunity to shape the Public Tenders for your business.

Competitive Public Tenders

The idea that special skills are required to secure contracts is a misstatement. Winning all competitive work is down to a combination of events. Therefore, prepare well, understand the competitive approach the buyer is looking for and ensure you have enough time.

What makes tenders competitive?

  1. Lean – ensure it doesn’t carry unnecessary content!
  2. Accuracy – state facts by all means but ensure they are correct!
  3. Compelling Content – style counts, winsome words win contracts!

How do you improve the chance of winning?

  • Understand the competitive approach – know the buyers strategy
  • Prepare every response as though it is the first
  • Work at the content all of the time – add real value to a tender by improving and updating content
  • Never stop trying to improve on the last one – get your scores, especially when you win

Know when to Employ a specialist

Not every tender requires a bid writer or a writing team, for example why pay to get on to a framework if you were already success in a previous competition. Take the template and work with the formula.

Yes I’m a tender writing specialist but if you don’t require my support I will let you know. Paying £1,000 for something you can do the bulk of yourself is throwing away good money. So discuss the tender, chat for half an hour and work out what is really required.

Stay lean, remain agile and be competitive that ensures winning Public Tenders is never accidental or a surprise.

Call me or contact via email if you want more information or to join the next Workshop Public Tenders – Introduction to Winning

Sustainable Foundation

Every new venture requires a sustainable foundation!

Business strategy is rarely considered as critical to the foundation, however, it has to be!

Experience teaches us a great deal and more effectively if we learn from the mistakes of other ventures. The saying is “Fail to plan = Plan to fail” consequently create the sustainable foundation.

What materials are required for the foundation?

  1. A marketplace
  2. The skills
  3. Finances
  4. Clear support features
  5. Determination

Anyone who is a Dragons Den or Shark Tank viewer is familiar with the phrases “this is not a business”, “solving a problem that doesn’t exist”.

A sustainable business requires a marketplace that continues to produce demand. For example, the every lasting light bulb could be possible but it renders all other light bulbs obsolete and you only get to sell it once. A hobby is of interest to a few people you know and you can be a master at it, however, that doesn’t mean it will sell enough to sustain you or the business.

Therefore, understand the scope and depth of market the product or service requires and then build the support for it. A personal favourite is the company that introduced a reliable product with the purpose of selling the after care service.

Each element applies to developing your business.

Financial Foundation

Too few new businesses owners plan for months when the targets are missed, that is why so many businesses fail in the first 12 months.

Consequently, the best advice is hold on to 3 months living costs permanently. That creates capacity for poor sales performance, late payment and supplier tardiness.

If you get to the end of the week and you don’t know what’s in the bank then start to get control of the finance. In start-up classes I referred to it as “Old Mother Hubbard”, the affliction of businesses across the world.

Old Mother Hubbard – Wikipedia

One rule that builds respect and financial credibility, pay your own bills on time.

Another, put a credit marker on everyone who is slow to pay. It isn’t unreasonable, because you can’t walk into a supermarket and say of course I’ll and then proceed to eat everything in the basket before you pay.

Realistic Foundations

To dream an impossible dream. When others tell you that you can achieve what ever you want to achieve, there is a truth, if no one is buying you’re not supplying.

So a dash of cynicism hasn’t hurt the planning process. Keep the process honest, based on facts so that the support structures have a real chance to take the load of business development.

The greatest complexity in the whole process needs to be the foundation. Strength comes from understanding that the shape of the building above can change and the foundation remains solid.

Selling Point

Like a building surveyor we test your business foundation, explore where reinforcement is required and what additional structures open new markets to you. Contact me for more detail. There is a world of opportunity and yet businesses still fail. Build on a sustainable business foundation

How Dynamic Are Your Goals?

Are you achieving your Goals?

Understanding that dynamic people require direction is a powerful tool when managing yourself.

Often, we use the description of “self-starter” or “self-motivated” and link it to the energy an individual brings to a job.

Sadly, this trait is not a guarantee that they will achieve what they want in life! But it is a positive value we bring to our life.

Goal management

How? By pushing ourselves to get things done. The constant desire to achieve tasks can appear to be industrious. However, like the bee flying at a window, all that effort can be energy wasted.

Bumblebee

So the real issue is how much of the dynamic energy we bring to a task, job or problem is wasted?

The principal lesson we learn from the Bee is to understand the environment. Identify how and where to achieve the goal. Could be the right target but the wrong place.

Wanting to do something, and understanding how to achieve it, also motivating yourself to do it, are completely different things. The Bee sees the objective but requires another’s intervention to achieve.

What is the difference between those who never reach their goals, year after year, and those who achieve one goal after another? Often, it’s their management of energy, being dynamic when the environment permits and reducing frantic activity when less is required.

Goal resources

Well an article in the Mindtools Newsletter from a good few years ago introduced me to a Self-motivation tool, this is the force that keeps pushing us to go on – it’s our internal drive to achieve, produce, develop, and keep moving forward. When you think you’re ready to quit something, or you just don’t know how to start, your self-motivation is what pushes you to go on

With self-motivation, you’ll learn and grow – regardless of the specific situation. That’s why it’s such a fundamental tool for reaching your goals, achieving your dreams, and succeeding, in this journey we call life. Refer to the support from Businessball.com these articles and challenges have helped me over the years. I established why although a self starter and dynamic person I still require organisation, structure and direction. Wasting precious resources doesn’t prevent you from achieving your goals it just delays the progress!

Key Points:

Self-motivation doesn’t come naturally to everyone. And even those who are highly self-motivated need some extra help now and then.

Build your self-motivation by practising goal-setting skills, and combining those with positive thinking, the creation of powerful visions of success, and the building of high levels of self-efficacy and self-confidence.

Your attitude and beliefs about your likelihood of success can predict whether or not you succeed. Set goals, and work hard to achieve them. Examine ways to improve your self-motivation, and regularly reassess your motivation levels. If you actively keep your internal motivation high, you can significantly increase the likelihood of achieving your hopes, dreams, and visions of the future.

Contact the Marketplace for details and additional support.

Business is more than just growing a customer base. Follow the Blog

Business Growth Tools

Focus on Growth

Three keys to Business Growth

Business Growth Tools and Market Development require continuous change, however, we all take comfort in familiarity. How can we balance comfort and growth in our business?

Every networking event attended, every marketing email sent, every penny invested in a website indicates that we want our business to be known, either we are buying or more often selling.

Therefore, we understand the basic principles, however, the real challenge is to achieve the right action which creates the opportunity.

Understanding Growth

Growth for growth’s sake is often a distraction, with bodies chasing everything and winning new business. The foundation of the business does expand, too wide and it strangles productive growth.

These 3 pointers are for those who want to understand when to choose No!

Progression Training

Old wood isn’t deadwood! There never comes a time when you need to stop investing in your team, no matter how experienced.

Consequently, design an annual training and events program that develops the skills and that challenge the individual.

Plan the progress you need them to make and spice it up with a little of what they want to learn.

To achieve the best result, know your staff and then know your marketplace. The cycle of change and progression is then embedded in the development of your business.

Creative Solutions

Don’t reinvent the wheel, or design a new feature. Gadgets and gizmos attract for a while the art of longevity in business focuses on understanding the developing needs of your marketplace.

Creative solutions need to save time, reduce stress and encourage activity. The critical element in developing a creative solution is listening beyond what is said. Ask questions that enable your market development.

Business Planning

Dynamic business planning acknowledges that your guiding document remains alive. The main purpose of a business plan can be to placate the bank or investors.

However, all that work and planning offers the core reasons for your business working. Treat it like actual cash flow when compared with projected income.

Be prepared to set goals for 8 years, 5 years and 3 years. Plot the journey and then decide the pace of travel. Your share of market growth remains dependent on the business infrastructure.

Borrowing too much too soon cripples small businesses. The solution is often in the people you know.

Mark P Trotter

We know our Business Growth Tools are effective because our challenges change with every new client, with every tender opportunity, with every crisis we are invited to resolve. Our experience shows us that planning, investment, and simplicity are at the heart of sustainable business growth.

Other Services

Bid and Tender Writing Services offer the following:

  1. Business Health Check
  2. Comprehensive Business Policy Review
  3. GDPR and Information Security support
  4. Strategic Planning and support, Bid v No Bid
  5. Bid and Tender writing
  6. Submission support and Document Reviews
  7. Templates and document management tools
  8. Training and Development
  9. Quality Improvement in Social Care
  10. Voluntary, Charity and Social Enterprise Governance

Specialists in Health and Social Care working in association with KKS Management Ltd