List and describe five typical stages in the process for selection of a supplier via competitive tender.
Issue Invitation to Tender
1. Define Requirements
Defining the requirements is a stage in the Supplier Selection Process. This process sits within the Project Management Plan and is produced by the Project Manager in conjunction with the team and the Procurement Office. This selection process takes place within the definition phase and will include specific information relating to cost, resources, scope, designs and much more. For example the tender could be to build a new baggage handling system at Heathrow T5.
2. Issue Invitation to Tender
Issuing the Invitation to Tender (ITT) is a stage in the Supplier Selection Process. It is carried out in the definition stage by the Project Manager. By inviting a number of suppliers to tender for a piece of work, allows the Project Manager to compare their costs and capabilities and he will include a date for the return of the responses from the contractors. For example the ITT will assess if suppliers have ever produced a new baggage handling system at an airport previously. The ITT will identify a scoring system by which the tenders will be assessed.
3. Answer Queries
Answering queries relating to the ITT is a stage in the Supplier Selection Process. This stage of the selection process takes place in the definition stage. All contractors will have the opportunity to ask questions and query the information set out in the document. These will be sent through to the PM who will review and respond. The Project Manager will then publish all the questions, queries and responses so that all the contractors who are part of that tender can be informed and they all have the same information to work with. This part of the process takes place within the definition stage.
4. Evaluate Responses
Evaluation of the responses to the tender is a stage in the Supplier Selection Process. This takes place in the definition phase. The Project Manager will receive all the responses by the date specified and will assess and compare all the information provided relating to each section. The Project Manager will mark the responses against the scoring criteria set out in the ITT. For example one contractor may inform it would cost £1m and 3 years to build the new baggage handling system but another may say it would be £2m and 2 years.
5. Award contract
Awarding the contract is a stage in the Supplier Selection Process and takes place within the definition phase. Having reviewed and evaluated the information provided by the contractors the Project Manager will make a decision as to which contractor best fits to the project. It may not be the cheapest price, or the quickest time but these are very much contributory factors to the decision. Ability and experience and best designs and lessons learned are very important to making this decision. Once the decision is made the Project Manager will inform the winning Contractor and then contact the losing contractors to inform them of his decision.