Public procurement can help small business diversify post-Brexit

cross-border tradeThe Prime Minister and the Taoiseach had some reassuring words on cross-border trade for local businesses following their talks on Brexit in Dublin on January 30th. Theresa May said both governments want a “seamless, frictionless border” to continue, while Enda Kenny stated that close and friction-free trading ties between the two countries are “in our very best interests”.

However, it is still far from clear what exactly will happen following Brexit so SMEs should plan for a number of scenarios if considering cross-border trade and should consider improving their tendering skills to help win lucrative public sector contracts.

Work from public bodies has helped many businesses on both sides of the border get through the recent recession as even though pressure was applied to renegotiate contracts, there was the security that they continued to pay creditors.

Much of this public sector work comes though tendering and it takes time to prepare your business to tender successfully: assessing the opportunities, developing your bid strategy, establishing relationships with buyers and putting in place the resources to make a compelling bid document.  For businesses planning their approach, InterTradeIreland’s Go-2-Tender programme is an excellent first step.

Grant Gilmore from InterTradeIreland explains: “Our Go-2-Tender programme aims to give businesses the confidence, knowledge and practical skills to tender successfully for public sector contracts both in their own jurisdiction and on a cross-border basis. The all-island public procurement market is worth approximately £10.4bn/€12.1bn and represents a valuable opportunity for SMEs and micro-businesses to increase their sales.

“Our award-winning Go-2-Tender workshops are based over two days and delivered by experienced bid specialists.  These also offer a half day of tailored mentoring support to each SME participant and eligible companies can also apply for up to a further two days of mentoring from a qualified consultant.

“We have also recently developed ‘Introduction to Tendering’ seminars.  These practical half day sessions are aimed at companies with fewer than ten employees and focus on low value/below threshold opportunities. These seminars are particularly valuable to those new to or with limited experience of public sector tendering.’’ Grant added.

Whether you are new to tendering and bidding for public sector contracts for the first time or are an experienced tenderer looking to refine and hone your skills further and keep up to date with the latest developments, InterTradeIreland can help.

Visit http://www.intertradeireland.com/go-2-tender/ today to find your nearest Go-2-Tender workshop and ‘Discover What’s Possible’ with InterTradeIreland.

 

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