Writing a tender, bid or proposal takes stamina! In addition to answering the tender questions, dealing with the paperwork can put real stress on your available time and resources.
And with all the time you’ve invested in drafting your bid, tender or proposal, you naturally want it to be word perfect. That’s where a copy editor comes in.
Even the world’s bestselling authors have copy editors to help them get their copy just right. And because you’ve written a tender, you too can benefit from the boost that expert copy editors give to draft tenders, bids and proposals. Good copy editors are worth the investment. They’ll transform what could be a mediocre draft tender into a compelling tender response.
In fact, copy editing is an essential part of the tender writing process. Why? Because it will dramatically improve your draft tender content.
What is copy editing for tender writing?
Copy editing is the stage of the content production process between tender writing and proofreading. Copy editors do not write tenders, bids or proposals. Professional copy editors turn your draft into professionally written content that flows, is grammatically correct and that is consistent in tone and style throughout.
Editing is more complex than purely proofreading. It can involve making major changes to your tender. But it’s time well spent as it will turn an average tender, bid or proposal into a winning tender submission.
Your copy editor will review your draft tender submission and make changes to it, sometimes rewriting or restructuring parts of the draft, to create a final tender that is clear and succinct. They’ll proofread it too, as copy editors are usually great proofreaders.
If numerous people have contributed to a tender, you’ll know that the content needs a professional polish so that it reads as if written by one person. Other times, you may have written the tender response yourself and instinctively know that needs a good tidy. At these times, using a professional copy editor is invaluable.
Here are our 5 hot tips to help you submit a word perfect tender
1. Check your document several times
Making multiple edit runs is especially useful with complex documents such as tenders, proposals and bids; however, it works well for short articles and blog posts as well. Really, all types of writing benefit from copy editing.
2. Give yourself time to rest before copy editing
Once you’ve written your tender, give yourself a break before you dive into the difficult task of tearing the document apart and rewriting it, which is a large part of the editing process. Getting away from it for a while will give you a fresh perspective when you come back to it.
3. Read the tender before you make any changes, preferably aloud
This will give you a chance to review your writing voice, the overall structure of your tender, and the flow of the words—all things you might need to revise as you edit. It will also alert you to any red flags about factual content or mistakes in headers and footers. These elements are important when editing documents.
4. Keep your language simple
For readability’s sake, it’s best to use simple language and sentence structure. Yours won’t be the only tender or proposal received. The recipient will be wading through many, perhaps even hundreds of tender responses. Make your tender writing stand out by keeping the words to the limits, if any, and writing in plain English.
There are lots of ways to cut the waffle when writing tenders, and indeed any business documents. For example:
- For the purpose of…instead use…To
- In order to…instead use…To
- A wide range of… instead use… Many
- For the reason that… instead use…Because, Since
Also, be consistent with your style. For example, if you hyphenate a word in one place, make sure to hyphenate it throughout your document.
5. Use headers, bullets and numbered lists to break up the content in your tenders
Using these techniques makes it easy for your reader to get the gist of the tender and makes the content easier to read. Nobody wants to read a tender or proposal that’s one big block of text and seemingly goes on forever.
And one final tip:
If you don’t feel comfortable with your own writing and editing skills, have an experienced copy editor look at your work.
Lastly, for more advice on writing a winning tender, check out our Top 10 Tips for Writing Tenders and Proposals.
Over the past two decades, we’ve managed and written literally hundreds of successful tenders including government tenders, helping companies to win millions of dollars in new business.