Scribble Talk Teaching with Paul Harding

Scribble Talk Guest Teaching

Understand the question: the gap between Read the question and Answer the question​ - With Paul Harding


About Guest: Paul Harding

Paul is Head of Group Tendering for Eurofins Forensic Services, part of the international life sciences and testing group Eurofins, where his role encompasses bidding, commercial and legal advisory services. With almost 25 years in sales roles, of which 15 have been in bid/tender functions, his bidding career has come through the defence and security sector into forensics. He is accredited at Professional level and has won bids into Bluelight customers, local councils, corporates, national Governments, the UK Ministry of Defence, the US Department of Defense and the United Nations. He is also a mentor on the APMPUK Rapport mentor programme.

Focal Points: 

  • why scoring criteria are used
  • that submissions will be assessed, not read (this feeds into my ‘writing for impact’ module) and that it will be scored against the criteria, not necessarily against the competition
  • How evaluation scoring can differ in terms of approach, talking about a few of the different schemes I’ve seen and the differences and how to read the criteria to determine how best to climb the score scheme (again, that it’s not the best writing but answering in a way that matches the scoring scheme)
  • How question weightings can help you determine where to spend effort  (e.g. movement of 1 consensus point on a 75% weighted question scored 1-5 has a bigger impact than the whole of a 5% question)

  • Then there’s looking at the questions and determining what they’re asking.  My sector is notorious for questions with multiple dimensions, and  unobvious hidden questions that if you can tease them out, can make it more difficult for other bidders to come off as compliant as you are against the question and therefore against the scoring criteria.
  • Then there’s the use of a compliance matrix to make sure your response and subsequent submission hit all of those areas as well as other things that tie the company into the contract – which, again, SMEs who only look at the specification may often not be aware of… and that the compliance matrix can feed into subsequent proceed/halt gates.​

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