Lesson 1: Layout and Presentation

Presentation is Key 

Presentation is key when submitting your tender. The tender document represents your company and your brand. Remember this is a marketing document and the tender should represent your brand and your organisation.  Mistakes can be detrimental to your offering! 

Tender Tip

Think about this useful analogy: 

How you present your document is how you present yourself. 

For example, for an interview you would dress professionally, wear your best suit to look as confident and well-presented for your potential role. You will speak well, speak credibly about your subject and show that you are organised and capable. 

Why? You want to show a higher level of professionalism than your competitors, colleagues or rivals—you want to win.  

The same should be true of your document. To improve your chances of winning make sure it looks professional and illustrates how you are the best organisation for the job. 

Tender Tip

RFTs will often require a strict response format to be observed so the client can easily compare each submission. Check if there is a specified format that you must use. In some instances, clients may provide a template for you to use in your response.  

Changing the response format may result in your disqualification through non-compliance. 

ONLY use your tender template, if you don’t have to follow a specific format. 

Design and Layout 

The layout of the proposal is critical to its readability and therefore the reader’s comprehension of your arguments and claims. Some things to keep in mind when you are developing your tender template: 

  • Be consistent. 
  • Follow the RFP’s format and layout requirements. 
  • Maximise the “white space” on the page by using wide margins, dot points, tables, charts and diagrams. 
  • Avoid overdone or fancy formatting and mixing too many font sizes or styles. 
  • Use different fonts and bold/italics sparingly and consistently. 
  • Avoid long paragraphs. One sentence per paragraph is great, if not always practical. 
  • The shorter the sentence the better. 
  • Headings, sub-headings and lists make reading and comprehension easier. 
  • Don’t crowd the text. 
  • Use a clear font (and only one). 
  • Number your pages 
  • Remember white space and duplication are your friend.