Tenders for Security Contracts

Security tenders can be quite varied, encompassing services such as manned guarding, reception/concierge services, high-visibility patrolling, CCTV monitoring, event security, access control, facilities management etc. As security contracts can include one, more or all these services, the specification for a security tender can be complex, sometimes divided into multiple lots. As a result, security tenders can be an excellent way to develop and diversify a security related business to increase revenue and market resilience.
Our system of preparing outstanding tenders to win contracts can ensure your business consistently beats the competition. Our tender writing specialists will work with you as you need to track, guide, validate, prepare, write, evaluate and review your security tenders, as well as provide the knowledge and expertise to make sure your business competes successfully and wins more security tenders.
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Challenges of tendering for security contracts

Security services are regularly outsourced as public and private sector companies want to utilise the expertise and experience that a dedicated security company provides and save themselves the cost of directly employing security personnel and purchasing the associated equipment. This provides a regular stream of security tenders and with them, significant prospects to develop a security services business, or indeed add security services to your existing business e.g. a facilities management or cleaning company with operatives on site at night may decide to expand into overnight site security.

However, with lots of opportunities comes lots of competition and highlights the importance of matching the tender requirements to your level of experience and ability, so that you are competing in the right race. You may have to read through many security tenders to find one that is relevant to your business and appropriate to the level of ability, service provision and experience you have. Ensuring you have an efficient system to sort through information and make an informed decision to tender will help achieve a much better return on your tendering investment.

It’s crucial to develop security solutions that will generate the savings and efficiencies buyers are looking for.  This is what G4S, Securitas, ADT and the other largest security companies do.  Perhaps the biggest challenge is therefore demonstrating how you can match up to these large businesses that imply they can deliver the most effective solutions.  Showing how much more effective your services are in the long-term, and how you have delivered solutions with better quality outcomes are key differentiators when it comes to winning security tenders.  Consequently, it is vital to establish and collect all the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), credentials, facts and statistics that really evidence your performance for your customers.

Top tips for winning security sector contracts:

1

Check how the tender is structured

Check how the tender is structured. Is the tender split into different lots or are all services grouped together? If the latter, be sure you can deliver all the requirements effectively. This is a good opportunity to demonstrate to the buyer how you will achieve excellent volume efficiencies by working on more than one security requirement at a time. If they award the whole contract to you, how much will they save? Can you offer some added value incentives? Correspondingly, if you’re bidding for an individual lot, how will your business deliver better value than a bigger multi-disciplinary security company?
2

Visit the site(s)

Often the security tender documentation itself will suggest you visit the site(s); even if it doesn’t, you should try to arrange a site visit (or multiple sites where applicable) if possible. This can make your bid more relevant and site-specific – you may see an opportunity to really add value and improve your service offering by helping the buying organisation to overcome local challenges. Site visits provide an excellent opportunity to ask questions of staff at that site to get to the underlying motivations of the buyer.
3

Health & Safety

Buyers are risk averse and want to be confident that the security services you provide will be carried out to the highest Health & Safety standards with minimal risk to your employees, their employees and the general public. Can you demonstrate staff training and qualifications in Health & Safety such as safe working, lone working, FPOS (first person on scene) and First Aid? How do you keep up to date with new guidance and communicate H&S arrangements to staff? You may be asked about details of any accidents or incidents reported under RIDDOR. You will need to supply plenty of evidence such as your H&S policy, risk assessments, method statements, and H&S audits. Critically it is just as important to show how you have learned from any Health and Safety incidents, rather than stating accidents never happen.
4

Quality control

Do your systems and processes have any quality assurance accreditation? Are you registered with the Security Industry Authority (SIA) Approved Contractor Scheme? How do you monitor your service delivery so that a quality security service is always delivered? How do you ensure it is timely and staff turn up to site each day and for example, patrol the areas they are supposed to within the relevant timeframe? How do you manage planned and unplanned staff absences? Consider reports, log books, audits and use of technology to show you have fool proof systems in place. What systems do you have in place for dealing with any problems or complaints? How have you learnt and acted on feedback to improve the quality of your security services?
5

Manage the contract effectively

Should you win the contract, there will be regular communication between yourself and the buyer, so you will need to demonstrate robust contract management processes with a clear organisational structure and corresponding lines of communication. How experienced are your account managers at handling this sort of contract? What projects have they worked on previously that demonstrate they are the ideal team to deliver this service? What technology do you use to manage your service delivery and how does this ensure effective management and efficiency? Provide evidence of previous experience wherever possible, such as management information reports and adherence to the SLA (Service Level Agreement) and KPIs (Key Performance Indicators).
6

Provide evidence

The buyer will want to be absolutely certain that you have the skills and experience necessary to provide the service requested. Are your staff trained with SIA approved certification? Do you have risk assessments that you can show? Wherever possible, include facts and figures from where you have successfully delivered similar services to other customers in the past. To provide the additional assurances needed, use case histories and testimonials for the different types of security requested with information on mobilisation, resourcing (including vehicles where applicable), timescales, communication, and or course the results/outcomes. Focus on what the outcomes were for your customer, what benefits did they achieve through your service delivery?
7

Equality & diversity

Security services are delivered in environments with diverse populations with differing needs. Can you demonstrate that you are equipped to provide an effective and appropriate service to all customers/residents/service users/patients, taking into account their diverse needs? Most security tenders will ask you for an Equality & Diversity policy. Is this specific to your business, does it include e.g. dealing with anti-social behaviour whilst on a high-visibility patrol? How are your staff trained to ensure they treat everyone equally? How do you recruit to demonstrate you are an equal opportunities employer?
8

Give extra value for money

Most tenders, whether public sector tenders or private sector tenders are awarded based on ‘best value for money,’ defined as MEAT (Most Economically Advantageous Tender). So how can you demonstrate that you will provide the best value for money? This is where innovation becomes important. How can you show that by doing things differently you can go ‘beyond the expected?’ Ideally you want to be able to example how your security services not only delivered a safe, secure solution, but also saved your other customers money and time, improved their own compliance and customer service scores and reduced their complaints.

Being successful

Following these tips and answering the above questions is not a quick and easy task, but the rewards of a successful security tender can be transformative. So, it is worth ensuring that you put your business in the best position to win.  You may not have the time or expertise in-house, which is why Complete Tenders offers a bid management and tender writing service that does the whole thing for you.

For more information or advice on winning security tenders, call us on 01707 244713 or email us at info@completetenders.com

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Our Company first used Complete Tenders in May 2018 where I was struggling to finish a tender due to the complexities of the finances. I called Complete tenders and Matthew dropped everything he was doing to assist and pulled the figures together in a short space of time which I then submitted on time. As a result of Matthew's intervention, we were awarded the contract in June 2018. I am confident that Complete tenders will help us grow our business significantly over the foreseeable future and look forward to what can be achieved. I would not hesitate in recommending Complete Tenders to any organisation that has growth at the heart of their business strategy.

Andy PearmanUCS

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At Complete Tenders we believe in helping small companies win contracts. However, few small businesses have the in-house expertise in bid management and tender writing to enable them to compete with larger organisations. Added to which, the process is a time-consuming activity that is often underestimated.

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