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Topics: Construction, Cost Management, Procurement Management
What do you share with unsuccessful bidders?
Hi Everyone,

In the current economy, we're finding the general contractors we are inviting to tender our projects are much more aggressive with trying to fine-tune their pricing after losing out on a particular project. Some of them are more subtle than others, with the worst of the bunch outright asking how much higher/lower they were on individual line items.

I'm curious - how much information do you share when solicited for answers as to why "Company A" wasn't successful, without violating the integrity of the tendering process?
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It's always good to share feedback with all proponents when the RFP is concluded. We normally send the unsuccessful bidders an e-mail letting them know they were not successful and why then giving them the option of having a debrief meeting with us for more details. At that point and after a successful bidder is chosen, we disclose all info - Transparency is important and it also helps others improve but again, this should happen after a successful proponent is chosen and engaged in order to maintain the integrity of the bidding process.

The Invitation to Tender should clearly define the debriefing process and information that will be provided to the unsuccessful proponents. Failing that you have to be careful as to the information you divulge or make public. Some tendering information may be considered confidential and, if divulged, could result in litigation. You cannot appear to show favoritism without impacting on future relationships.

Note that if the unsuccessful bidder is provided information on the successful tender than it works the other way - the successful gets info on the unsuccessful. That could set up demands for scope changes, extra payments if the price delta is significant. It may also result in claims as to scope clarity and intent.

Bidding process integrity is maintained by stating upfront your actions and then sticking to it.
What to share in a debrief?

Can you share any link for a sample debrief of a bid.

Is there an international standard regarding this? FIDIC or etc.
Well Mr. Rami has rounded it quite well, also a lot depends on the Organizational policies in place.

Once a successful bidder is chosen, the product/service short comings, non-compliance to requirements, incompatible contract terms, etc of non-successful bidders could be shared to help them improvise.

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