3 Things to Note When Applying for BBC Tenders

Published6th April 2021

BBC tenders: what to expect

Winning BBC tenders can be a challenge if you’re not familiar with tendering practices. Supplying to the BBC is rife with competition and you should want your bid to stand out from the crowd.

The BBC have five top priorities when it comes to suppliers and procurement. It’s worth bearing in mind that their strategic priorities include:

  1. Supporting the supply of distinctive, British ideas to the BBC from across the UK.
  2. Strengthening production ecologies, talent and the creative pipeline outside London.
  3. Maintaining a range of supply in the UK enabling smaller producers to not only survive but grow.
  4. Strengthening progress on diversity and representation both on and off-screen.
  5. Strengthening progress towards environmentally sustainable production in the UK.

3 things to bear in mind when applying for BBC tenders

  1. Various methods of procurement

Open tendering procedure

BBC tenders may also be an open tendering procedure. This often involves an invitation to tender, known as an ITT. An ITT will usually include the following:

  • Specification of requirement
  • Service level agreement
  • Commercial, operational, corporate social responsibility
  • Pricing schedule.

Restricted procedure

A restricted tendering procedure will feature a two-stage bidding process. It will first have an initial pre-qualification questionnaire, known as a PQQ or SQ. This is a pass/fail stage and is often used when more complex goods or services are being procured. It’s to ensure potential suppliers meet a minimum eligibility criterion and have the necessary ability to fulfil the contract.  After a supplier passes the PQQ or SQ, they will then receive an ITT.

Framework agreements

BBC tenders are often procured via framework agreements. Framework agreements are multi-supplier agreements used by a buyer to procure goods, works and services. They often benefit SMEs as there are more places available to supply a good or service. Securing a place on a framework is a great way to grow your business.

Framework agreements divide work into lots. Each lot typically represents a specific good, service or location. This means a supplier can apply to the specific lot(s) they can deliver. They aren’t required to supply the whole contract.

The type of tendering procedure used will be specified in the tender documents.

  1. Value for money

The BBC are expected to achieve and deliver maximum value for money. In order to do this, they will award the bid to the most economically advantageous tender, known as the MEAT. A MEAT is assessed on multiple aspects, not just price. It’s important to note that the cheapest bid does not win. BBC tenders will be evaluated on a range of things including, but not limited to:

  • Innovation
  • Environmental considerations
  • Accessibility
  • Ability to deliver on time
  • Quality
  • Price
  • Technical merit
  • Sustainability

The award criteria will vary depending on the type of contract and will be noted in the tender documents.

  1. Diversity, representation and inclusion strategy

Diversity and inclusion are imperative for BBC tenders. The BBC has pledged to commit to hardwiring diversity into everything they do. They are committed to growing diversity across the board via the programmes they make and the people that make them. It’s important to note that there are two commitments that come into effect on 1st April 2021.

  • A commitment for the BBC to invest £100 million in diverse production and content.
  • A requirement for producers to have 20% off-screen diversity on new TV commissions.

The commitments are independent of each other, but both focus on underrepresented groups.

20% diversity in production teams

The BBC are looking for those:

  • From Black, Asian or minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds
  • With lived experience of a disability
  • From lower-income backgrounds i.e. social economic diversity (SED).

£100 million commissioning spend

Newly commissioned titles must have at least two of the following diverse characteristics:

  • Stories and portrayal on-screen
  • Production leadership
  • Company leadership

It’s worth bearing these new commitments in mind when applying for your next BBC tenders.

Need help writing your BBC tenders?

The BBC care about the quality of your written response for BBC tenders. We understand that writing isn’t everyone’s strong suit and that’s ok. Your business shouldn’t have to suffer as a result of this. Outsourcing a tender to a bid writing service can help you win your next bid and grow your business.

Our sister company, Hudson Succeed, have an 87% success rate and over 60 years of bid writing experience. They offer four bid writing support services that can help you win your next BBC tenders. Whether you’re completely new to tendering, or need your response proofread before you submit – we can help.

Tender Writing

Once you’ve found the perfect BBC tender for your business, send it our way. Our Bid Writers can take care of it all for you and they’ll even submit it on your behalf. They’ll let you know what they need from you, providing you with a full Tender Writing breakdown.

Tender Ready

Our Tender Ready 4-week programme is perfect for those who have never tendered before. A Bid Writer will work with you to make sure you have everything you need in place to tender successfully. The Tender Ready programme offers your business:

  • A 12-month subscription to Creative Tenders
  • Access to Global Bid Directors and Senior Bidding professionals
  • An organisation-wide Bid Library, including 3 case studies, 5 CV’s and 8 policies
  • Additional flexible benefit options.

Tender Improvement

Tender Improvement can help if you aren’t seeing the desired results from your tendering efforts. The Bid Team will assess your previous responses and tender documents, working with you to improve for future submissions. This package includes a 12-month subscription to Creative Tenders and additional tendering development services.

Tender Mentor

If you’ve written your own BBC tender response and need someone to double-check it for errors, Tender Mentor can help. Our Bid Team will proofread your work for any inconsistencies, grammar or spelling mistakes. They’ll also ensure that it’s in line with the specification before you submit.

Where can I find BBC tenders?

BBC tenders are published on the BBC website, but why limit and stop yourself there? There are hundreds of creative tendering opportunities going live every day with a variety of buyers. By limiting yourself to just the BBC you could be missing out on the perfect creative contracts in the UK for your business.

You may think that searching for creative tenders can take up a lot of your time, and you would be right. Wouldn’t it be great if you could use a time-saving tool that alerted you when new tendering opportunities are published?

Creative Tenders is one, easy-to-navigate centralised portal that hosts all live creative tendering opportunities from across the Creative Industry. There’s no reliance on inaccurate CPV codes!

Our Opportunity Trackers manually search and upload unique, private and public sector opportunities. You’re able to filter and search the results by keyword, budget, location and more. This streamlines the process, allowing you to find the perfect BBC tenders for your business.

Previous BBC tenders sourced on our portal:

BBC Audiences – Social Media Listening Services

BBC- London- Budget: £350,000

BBC Bitesize Scotland – 2nd Level Curriculum for Excellence

BBC Bitesize- Scotland- Budget: Undisclosed

Factual Commissioning Opportunity for Welsh Suppliers

BBC Wales- Wales- Budget: Undisclosed

BBC Wales New Documentary Directors’ Initiative

BBC Cymru Wales- Wales- Budget: Undisclosed

Culture in Quarantine Commissioning Strand – Disabled Artists Commissioning Opportunity

BBC Arts- Northern Ireland- Budget: Undisclosed

We also source opportunities for sectors including;

Book a free live demo with Creative Tenders to see how we can help your business grow.

A subscription to Creative Tenders offers your business: 

  • Access to all unique, private and public sector opportunities across the Creative Industry.
  • An on-hand Account Manager to answer any questions you may have about finding BBC tenders.
  • A daily email bulletin sent straight to your inbox when new creative tenders are uploaded that day.
  • Discounted support from Hudson Succeed, our bid writing division.
  • 20-minutes of free consultancy with one of our Bid Consultants.

Want to save even more time?

Upgrading to Discover Elite allows you identify tendering opportunities even when you’re busy. Our two upgraded packages can improve your competitor awareness and bidding success rate. Each can help save you even more time when searching for BBC tenders for your business.

The Ultimate Time Saver package offers your business:

  • A maximum of five tender breakdowns per month.
  • An annual subscription to a maximum of two Hudson Discover sector-specific portals. This option can help businesses that overlap two industries such as Creative and Technology, for example.
  • Pre-market and award engagement notices monitored on your behalf.
  • Buyer portal management, including registration, password management, downloading documents and assessing viability based on your bid or no-bid
  • Weekly phone calls with your dedicated Account Manager to discuss viable creative tendering opportunities.

The Become a Pre-Bid Master package also includes:

  • All of the above.
  • Up to seven tender breakdowns per month.
  • A Bid Strategy delivered by a Senior Bid Manager with a minimum of 5 years of experience. It will also be managed by our Global Bid Director.

Contact us to find out how we can help your business grow.

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