Getting contracts in Nigeria can be very tough, because there are many processes to go through. Any company that gives you contracts would like to know how skillful and experienced you are, and even your qualifications status.
The first thing you need to do before looking for contracts is to register your company, because unregistered individual bidding is disallowed. This is mainly effective on Government contracts.
Before registering your company, you need to enroll in a specialized training and acquire some special certificate depending on your area of interests such as consultancy, procurement, and project management.
If you’re looking for how to get contracts in Nigeria, follow the simple steps in this post.
Here are simple steps you can take to get contracts in Nigeria:
Step 1: Build a Portfolio
Building a portfolio is a way you can show a proof of your past performance; and this is very essential before applying for a contract.
In the course of building a portfolio, some can choose to work for free or for low prices to be able to have one. If you are interested in building a proof of past performances, you should look away from making a lot of money.
The objective here is to build a channel of record you can always refer to when you choose to chase better and more serious opportunities.
Step 2: Seek Information and Research the Institutions
The opportunities that seeking information and researching companies will unfold are numerous and invaluable.
After researching the institutions, then you send out many Requests For Proposals (RFPs) and what contract categories their proposals usually cover, and much more.
Step 3: Contact the Procurement Department
Visit the procurement departments of many organizations around the country and ask for information on pending or future contracts. Go on to build relationships with the staff in the respective procurement departments.
Whenever they have an opening for any category you mentioned you and your team can deliver effectively on, they would like to contact you as well as others who are involved.
Step 4: Use the Internet
Using the internet is the fastest way to find out which organizations have REPs, and most procurement departments always publish REPs on popular contract sites.
These websites have real-time REP information, offering you the ability to apply for tens or hundreds quickly as you have the information at your finger tips.
A good example of a contract website is www.etenders.com.ng.
Step 5: Request Detailed Information
You can know the details of the company’s procurement process and bid requirements by asking for an information package.
Complete and submit the supplier capability forms included in the package they send. Include any supporting documentation you may need to authenticate your business history, capacity, financial viability, and products and services you provide.
Step 6: Bid for Contracts
After getting a Request For Proposal (REP), it is essential to meticulously study the different conditions to know the basic requirements of each organization before you could get disqualified.
If you have a PENCOM certificate alongside a registered business name and not company with less than a certain number of staff members, you can still apply.
Step 7: Prepare Your Proposals
Your proposal should highlight the value your business will add to their organization. Exhibit previously awarded and completed works that you successfully delivered, and make your proposal to be prominent out of many other proposals that are submitted.
To accomplish this, you could need to prepare a first-class proposal that has more visible look and drifts totally far from the model. To further distinguish your proposal, you can also look for advice from the procurement department on what is best to be included and excluded from the proposal.
Step 8: Defend Your Bid
Before you can be invited to bid for the contract, you must meet the minimum requirements. And you would have to show and defend some of your previously completed projects in front of a panel of judges.
You need to put in all you have, possibly the same exact project that you successfully executed for another client; because apart from just a verifiable proof of past performance, you also need to offer a competitive price and confirm your capacity to deliver the project within a short timeframe.
Step 9: Calculate Your Bid
You need to calculate your bid to include your overhead costs such as labor, supplies, equipment usage and your profit margin. Bidding low will not yield you any profits, but instead disqualifies you.
Try to present the most attractive bid on a business Request For Bid Proposal by presenting the best quality and turnaround at the most reasonable price.
Step 10: Execute the Contract
If you eventually got the contract, you would need to put a remarkable team together to achieve a perfect execution. If you can execute this contract successfully, the organization will refer you to other organizations, and that will make your portfolio to have more credible and reliable image.
In your struggle to win a contract, try to assess your chances of winning and deciding whether or not to bid.
You should evaluate whether the contract is winnable, deliverable, desirable or profitable. Do you know all the buyers well enough to tailor your response to them? Will you make money out of the contract? Can you deliver the contract if you win? And finally, does the contract suit your business?
These questions will help you before you think of becoming a contractor. Talk more about your bids than you. Appeal to the self interest of the employer and you will have a better chance of winning.
Getting a contract in Nigeria doesn’t come easy and contracts (especially Government) involve a lot of money. If you don’t have a stable business and requirements for the procurement of the contract, you will hardly win the contract.
Get involved in a contract that is suitable to your business, and carry out market research. You need to prove that you have everything about the contract, and make logical argument while bidding for the contract.
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