Tendering - Glossary of Terms & Acronyms

A dictionary of terms and their definitions and the common interpretation of acronyms for the Tender developer, tech writer, manager, etc. especially useful for understanding ads for Tenders, EOIs and RFTs in the Australian government, business and industrial environments.

acceptance = the act by the issuer of accepting the offer made by the tenderer in the tender; an agreement by the issuer to contract with the tenderer under the terms as detailed by the tenderer in the tender

accredited = pre-qualified

addendum = a separate (complete) document that, when published, becomes added to the end of the named document and forms part of the document named; in the academic world an addendum is published with the main document but is "an addendum" to maintain its integrity as a separate and distinct document, easily separable from the main body of the work; in the tendering world the addendum is published afterwards and is often used by the issuer to correct mistakes in the original RFT without having to recall the document and start again; it is often used also by the issuer to answer questions related to the RFT by a prospective tenderer and is the only way such a question can be answered, thereby ensuring that all prospective tenderers get to see the question and answer, thereby ensuring equality in in the briefing process

addendum (fishing) = Q1: Would you accept multiple compliant bids with different value propositions? A1: Yes. However, Tenderers shall make this clear in their tender(s). Failure to do this will result in disqualification. And a separate bid cannot constitute a hidden price difference where the benefits delivered remain in essence the same and the price is the only thing that essentially has altered; the tenderer shall call attention to the other bid(s), the difference in the bid(s) and give a detailed explanation of the difference in actual benefits (lost or gained) that the difference in the bid represents to the issuer and why this difference is being proposed

addendum (consortium) = Q2: You require written confirmation that domestic and overseas benchmarking partners are already secured. Would a "best-of-breed" joint response of multiple entities be considered a compliant response with each party contributing their core expertise? A2: A joint response shall be considered, if any only if, the response complies with the following requirements:
a. the joint partners (members of the consortium) propose to contract with the issuer through one separate legal entity registered in Australia;
b. the legal entity already exists at the moment of lodgement of the Tender;
c. each joint partner (member of the consortium) has completed and lodged with the joint tender a separate "Tenderer?s Details";
d. the consortium has already a registered address and a single point of contact for the consortium in Australia; and
e. the consortium does not constitute a partnership or has submitted the tender on the basis that two or more organisations will be jointly and severally liable.

addenda = more than one addendum

ADO = Australian Defence Organisation

ALUM = Australian legal units of measurement

Annual Procurement Plan = it is a tradition in large companies (and the government) that prior to the start of the financial year the full plan for change, development, process modification and improvement in all departments is agreed between department heads and the board (cabinet) and the budgets are set but now, in addition to this, detail is requested from departments on what goods and services will need to be procured during the year to make these plans happen and a formal Annual Procurement Plan is agreed, prior to commencement, making it more likely that goals will be met during the year

APS = Australian Public Service

application for inclusion = a special EOI; a formal application for inclusion on pre-qualified register; See Multi-use List (CTH)

approved = pre-qualified and approved as being an acceptable supplier and only a competitive bid is required to win contract

AS 2124, 2125, 2127:1992 = General conditions of contract; See SAI Global

AS 4000:1997 = General conditions of contract; See SAI Global

AS 4120:1994 = Code of tendering; See SAI Global

AS 4122:2000 = General conditions of contract for engagement of consultants; See SAI Global

AS 4902:2000 = General conditions of contract for design and construct; See SAI Global

AS 4910:2002 = General conditions of contract for the supply of equipment with installation; See SAI Global

AS/NZS 4911:2003 = General conditions of contract for the supply of equipment without installation; See SAI Global

AS 2124, 2125, 2127:1992 = General conditions of contract; See SAI Global

AS 4000:1997 = General conditions of contract; See SAI Global

AS 4950:2006 = Form of formal instrument of agreement; See SAI Global

ASAP = "as soon as possible" (vernacular)

ATM = Approach to Market

audience = the readers of the document who need to understand all aspects of the document

AusTender = Commonwealth government tender website

Australian legal units of measurement (ALUM) = See National Measurement Institute

Australian Standards = SAI

AWA = Australian Workplace Agreement

BAFO = best and final offer

best and final offer (BAFO) =

best practice = formulas and procedures that have proven successful in practice, identified by general international acceptance. In the IT world, best practice often refers to software development methodologies widely accepted internationally

Bid Manager = head of the tender technical writers team (TTWT); chief liaison officer with all department heads to ensure that departments have the resources to perform and that strategic planning, resource management, timing and costing is correct, prior to tender; the Bid Manager has to sign off the Tender and take responsibility for the due diligence of the TTWT; See also Proposal Coordinator

Bid Master = see Bid Manager

BOD = board of directors

CAC = Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act (CTH) 1997

certificate of identity = a formal certificate identifying the proposer/tenderer to be completed by the proposer/tenderer and attached to the proposal/tender

CFR 48(CH1 PTS1-51):2009 = Federal Acquisitions Regulations System; See SAI Global

CFR 48(CH1 PTS52-99):2009 = Federal Acquisition Regulations System; See SAI Global

CFR 48(CH3-6):2009 = Federal Acquisition Regulations System - Dept. Of Health And Human Services - Dept. Of Agriculture - General Services Administration; See SAI Global

CFR 48(CH7-14):2009 = Federal Acquisition Regulations System - Agency For International Development - Veterans Administration - Dept. Of Energy - Dept. Of The Treasury - Dept. Of Transportation, Commerce & Interior; See SAI Global

CFR 48(CH15-28):2009 = Federal Acquisition Regulations System (national Archives And Records Administration); See SAI Global

CFR 48(CH29-END):2009 = Federal Acquisition Regulations System (national Archives And Records Administration); See SAI Global

closing date = see tender closing date

Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997 = An Act to provide reporting, accountability and other rules for Commonwealth authorities and Commonwealth companies, and for related purposes

Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines (CPGs) = Australian Government requirements

competitive bid (most) = economically most attractive; cheapest (price, cost, rate, etc.)

competitive bid process = a call for a bid from an approved tenderer who has registered a standing offer and been approved by the issuer and only the most competitive bid now needs to be registered to win contract

compliance = fulfils requirement without qualification; see also partial compliance, non=compliance, exceed-compliance

compliance (contractual condition in the RFT) = that the condition is agreed to

compliance (informative statement in the RFT) = that the statement has been read, understood and is agreed

compliance (performance requirement detailed in the RFT) = that the tenderer agrees to provide the requirement as specified

compliance (request for information detailed in the RFT) = that the information has been provided in the level of detail and in the format as specified

confidentiality agreement (issuer to sub-contractor) = deed signed by sub-contractor and issuer where the issuer is making available due diligence material to a sub-contractor nominated by a tenderer by separate Statutory Declaration

confidentiality agreement (issuer to tenderer) nomination format = deed signed by tenderer and issuer where the issuer is making available due diligence material to the officers, employees, agents and advisers nominated by the tenderer

confidentiality agreement (issuer to tenderer) individual participant format = deed signed by separate individual nominated by the tenderer and issuer where the issuer is making available due diligence material to an individual nominated by the tenderer - separate confidentiality agreement for each participant

consortium = proposer/tenderer

constative = able to be measured true or false (falsifiable)

constative statement = a falsifiable statement, claim, declaration, assertion that attempts to describe reality

CPGs = Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines

corporation = proposer/tenderer

Deed of Tender = Lodgement under seal. A legal document accompanying the Tender, often used to guarantee products, services, and/or prices on offer in the accompanying Tender. This is the only place the price of the offer is mentioned in the tender document, allowing it to be removed from the front to allow the rest of the tender to be processed by players at the lodgement office assessing the value of the tender who do not need to know the final price

deliverables = all items promised under a contract

descriptive = constative

DEST = Department (of) Education, Science (and) Training

disclosure = see rules of disclosure

disqualification = see rules of disqualification

DMO = Defence Materiel Organisation

due diligence = process prior to lodgement that places a burden on and commits the tenderer/proposer to investigate every aspect of the tender/proposal and a burden on the issuer to provide all information necessary and answer all questions raised by the tenderer/proposer openly and honestly and without fear or favour and therefore for the tenderer/proposer to be unable to seek costs, reconsideration, appeal or compensation following final decision by the issuer

due diligence material = material restricted at the time of RFP/RFT but made available to the tenderer/proposer after receipt of RFP/RFT upon request and after the signing of a confidentiality agreement or non-disclosure agreement

EOI = Expression of Interest (Also called ROI)

essential requirement = one of the rules of disqualification, an essential action, element, content, disclosure, expected by the issuer and specifically itemised by the issuer in the RFT, which if not actioned or provided by the tenderer may lead to disqualification of the tender by the issuer; e.g. Tenders (including schedules, attachments and supporting material) shall be written in English; e.g. all measurements shall be expressed in Australian legal units of measurement

ethics dictionary = some important words for corporate ethics

exceed-compliance (contractual condition in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the tenderer agrees to the condition which in this case implies agreement to (an)other condition(s) as well

exceed-compliance (informative statement in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the statement has been read, understood and is understood to imply more agreement in this case than normally implied

exceed-compliance (performance requirement detailed in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the tenderer agrees to provide more than the requirement as specified

exceed-compliance (requested for information detailed in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the information has been provided but in a level of detail and/or in a format that exceeds the requirement as specified

exclusion = a tenderer is excluded from further participation in the RFT process for failing to comply with such requirements as: minimum content and format requirements

expression of interest = a process in which first stage documents (REOI) are issued by the issuer seeking registration by prospective tenderers (respondents) and requiring key information which will allow the issuer to evaluate who should receive the RFT

Expression of Interest (EOI) = first stage documents to be lodged by tenderer registering their interest which if satisfactory will qualify them to be on a short list for receipt of RFT. (Also called ROI)

FMA = Financial Management and Accountability Act (CTH) 1997

Financial Management and Accountability Act (CTH) 1997 = An Act to provide for the proper use and management of public money, public property and other Commonwealth resources, and for related purposes

general requirements when dealing with the Commonwealth = whether specifically stated in the RFT or not, when preparing tender in response to a Commonwealth RFT tenderers should obtain and will be deemed to have obtained their own advice on the impact of Acts referring to general requirements when dealing with the Commonwealth, such as the

which grants members of the public rights of access to official documents of the Australian Government and its agencies; Guidance on Confidentiality in Procurement Lobbying Code of Conduct

and so on; this is because these Acts are fundamental to defining the nature of the legal person with whom we are dealing in the tendering process

instrument of delegation (for RFP) = deed executed by the issuer's BOD under s.198D of the Corporations Act prior to issue of the RFP giving a key manager the power to authorise the RFP and associated documents, to sign contracts, to order supply, and authorise payments on a particular proposal-based project on behalf of the BOD. Thereafter the proposers will consider the delegated authority as the issuer, without having to worry the BOD

instrument of delegation (for RFT) = deed executed by the issuer's BOD under s.198D of the Corporations Act prior to issue of the RFT giving a key manager the power to authorise the RFT and associated documents, to sign contracts, to order supply, and authorise payments on a particular tender-based project on behalf of the BOD. Thereafter the tenderers will consider the delegated authority as the issuer, without having to worry the BOD

instrument of delegation (for tender) = deed executed by the tenderer's BOD under s.198D of the Corporations Act prior to lodgement giving a key manager the power to authorise the preparation and lodgement of the tender and associated documents, to sign contracts, to order supply, and authorise payments on a particular tender-based project on behalf of the BOD. Thereafter the issuer will consider the delegated authority as the tenderer, without having to worry the BOD

Invitation to Tender (ITT) = RFT (small - usually at the level of local government or NGO)

invited RFT = only those directly invited to tender from a pre-qualified register of approved tenderers may obtain an RFT

invited RFP = only those directly invited to propose from a pre-qualified register of approved suppliers may obtain an RFP

issue = the process of issuing the ROI/RFP/RFT to the registrant/proposer/tenderer

issuer = the company that issued the ROI/RFP/RFT

ITT = Invitation to Tender

key performance indicators (KPI) = an agreed list of performance indicators that apply in this case

KPI = key performance indicator

late lodgement = the failure by the tenderer/proposer to deliver the tender/proposal to the issuer in time to meet lodgement requirements as stated in the RFP, RFT

late lodgement policy = the policy of the issuer, as stated in the RFP/RFT, regarding what will happen if the prospective tenderer/proposer fails to deliver the tender/proposal to the issuer in time to meet lodgement requirements as stated in the RFP, RFT

legal units of measurement = See Australian legal units of measurement

lodgement = the process of delivery of the tender/proposal by the tenderer/proposer and receipt by the issuer

lodgement = see late lodgement

lodgement = see rules of lodgement

lodgement under seal = see Deed of Tender

minimum content = one of the rules of disqualification, content expected by the issuer, which, if not provided by the tenderer, may lead to disqualification of the tender by the issuer

minimum content and format requirements = one of the rules of disqualification, content expected by the issuer, which, if not provided by the tenderer or not provided in the correct format as requirement and specified in the RFT, may lead to disqualification of the tender by the issuer

minimum form and format = one of the rules of disqualification, form and format of tender expected by the issuer, which if not provided by the tenderer may lead to disqualification of the tender by the issuer

minimum requirements = see essential requirements

minimum requirements = see minimum content

minimum requirements = see minimum form and format

Multi-use list (CTH) = a pre-qualified register, a list of likely participants maintained by the CTH who have satisfied the conditions for inclusion and who are therefore intended for use in more than one CTH procurement process

National Measurement Guidelines = National Measurement Guidelines, 1999; See Australian Legal Units of Measurement and download the guidelines

National Measurement Regulations = National Measurement Regulations, 1999; See Australian Legal Units of Measurement and download the regulations

NGO = non-government organisation

non-compliance (contractual condition in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the condition cannot be agreed to and no alternative condition can be suggested by the tenderer to be more appropriate

non-compliance (informative statement in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the statement has been read by the tenderer and cannot be agreed to or understood due to its absurdity or ambiguity or falsehood

non-compliance (performance requirement detailed in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the tenderer cannot agree to provide the requirement as specified and cannot offer an alternate solution

non-compliance (request for information detailed in the RFT) = that (for the reasons stated) the information cannot and will not be provided by the tenderer

non-disclosure agreement = confidentiality agreement that describes clearly what is not to be disclosed

normative standard = statement agreed nationally or internationally on how things ought to be; correct; right

normative statement = how things ought to be; correct; right

open tender = an invitation to tender by public advertisement with no restriction placed on who may tender. Tenderers will normally be required to demonstrate in their tender that they have the necessary skills, resources, experience, financial capacity, and in some cases licences, accreditations, etc., to fulfil the tender requirements

panel arrangements = successful tenderers become part of a panel of tenderers chosen by the issuer to deliver goods and services under a standing offer arrangement and may be selected for specific capability requirements according to their skills and expertise, the extent to which their services represent value for money, and/or the individual requirements of a particular project

panel contract = contract between issuer and successful tenderers who have become part of a panel, governing panel arrangements

partial compliance (contractual condition in the RFT) = that the condition is not agreed to but an alternative condition is suggested by the tenderer to be more appropriate

partial compliance (informative statement in the RFT) = that the statement has been read by the tenderer and has not been understood or is deemed to be ambiguous or cannot be understood by the tenderer without further clarification

partial compliance (performance requirement detailed in the RFT) = that the tenderer does not agree to provide the requirement as specified but can offer an alternate solution

partial compliance (request for information detailed in the RFT) = that the information has been provided by the tenderer but not in the level of detail and in the format as specified

partnership = proposer/tenderer

performance indicator = an agreed (agreed by national or international standard) method for measuring (quantitative) performance; see KPI

performance standards = standards of performance

planned procurement = planning in advance the needs and timing for procurement ATM under tender; key elements of company's or governmental agency's Annual Procurement Plan

Planned Procurement Policy = formal policy initiative by AusTender to provide easy access to planned procurements

pre-qualification = the process of pre-qualifying and approving tenderers to enable them to obtain an RFT

pre-qualified register = the building of a list of approved tenderers/proposers from EOI/ROI or from knowledge of a limited number of service providers in the industry known to carry out or possess the technology to carry out the work or service referred to in the RFT

pre-qualified register (CTH) = called the Multi-use List

preferred tenderer(s) = (a) tenderer(s) preferred by the issuer and made clear as preferred to other tenderers, together with the reason(s) for this preference, as a due diligence requirement on the issuer because it may affect other tenderers' willingness to undertake the expense of due diligence, meeting minimum requirements and lodgement

project management = specialist terms & acronyms

proposal = a response to a Request for Proposal (RFP); usually for a smaller amount and the response is often less formal and more creative

Proposal Coordinator = a junior liaison officer in the TTWT assigned the job of understanding the resource requirements, strategic planning, resource management, timing and costing of a particular tender or proposal and following that tender/proposal through until tender is lodged, assisting where necessary the timely achievement of requirements to tender; See also Bid Manager

proposer = sole trader/partnership/corporation/consortium requesting RFP

QA = quality assurance

QC = quality control

quality = compliant with ISO 9000, ISO 9001, ISO 14000, etc.

registrant = sole trader/partnership/corporation/consortium responding to the ROI, also known as the tenderer

registration of interest = a process in which first stage documents (ROI) are issued by the issuer seeking registration by prospective tenderers and requiring key information which will allow the issuer to evaluate who should receive the RFT

Registration of Interest (ROI) = first stage documents to be lodged by tenderer registering their interest which if satisfactory will qualify them to be on a short list for receipt of RFT

REOI = Request (for) Expression of Interest

Request For EOI = tender RFT process broken into two stages, where the interested parties are asked to register their interest in an EOI and the RFT is only issued to a short list (also called Request for EOI)

Request For ROI = tender RFT process broken into two stages, where the interested parties are asked to register their interest in an ROI and the RFT is only issued to a short list

Request For Information (RFI) = a formal request sent to a number of chosen vendors (prospective tenderers/proposers) at the time of preparing the strategic plan asking for specific information about product and/or service. The RFI usually happens before there is any commitment to a particular strategy. The RFI therefore commits the requester to nothing. Its main objectives are to state clearly the information needed and to give clear deadlines for the information. It also needs to protect important information that needs to be given to the vendor in order to get required information back from the vendor. The RFI is usually the first step in a process that will finish up with a RFT/RFP.

Request For Proposal (RFP) = a publicly or privately advertised request for proposals from suppliers. The RFP may be very formal and legalistic like the RFT (in government RFPs, for example) where the only difference is the value of the contract, it may be more limited in advertising (more private) where it is issued to suppliers already registered or it may be more informal encouraging interested parties to provide additional information and methodology in their proposal

Request For Tender (RFT) = a publicly advertised request for written offers from suppliers based on a written statement or specification of requirements. The RFT and related documents have been developed in Australia for large and costly projects and are legalistic and formal. Usually the advertisement outlining the nature of the RFT is responded to by the interested parties and the relevant documents are issued to all those who enquire

requester = the company/government department that issued the RFI (the same company that will become the issuer following issue of the ROI/RFP/RFT)

respondent = prospective tenderer in first stage reply to RFROI/REOI (also sometimes called tenderer by the issuer)

RFI = Request For Information

RFP = Request For Proposal

RFR = Request For Registration (of Interest) (also called REOI)

RFROI = Request For Registration of Interest (also called REOI)

RFT = Request For Tender

risk management = specialist terms & acronyms

ROI = Registration of Interest (also called EOI)

rules of disclosure = rules stipulated by the issuer and made clear in the RFT governing requirements placed on the issuer by the legal environment governing disclosure of information provided by the tenderer to the issuer in confidence

rules of disqualification = rules stipulated by the issuer and made clear in the RFT governing actions by the tenderer in registration, request, enquiry, due diligence, confidentiality, minimum content, minimum form and format, providing essential requirement, lodgement, collusive tendering, unsuccessful tenderers' kick-backs, conflicts of interest, unlawful inducements, etc., which if not followed precisely by the tenderer could lead to disqualification of the tender

rules of lodgement = rules stipulated by the issuer and made clear in the RFT governing actions required by the tenderer in lodgement of the tender, including method of lodgement, tender closing date, place of lodgement, which if not followed precisely by the tenderer could lead to disqualification of the tender

selected = pre-qualified and approved

Service Level Agreement (SLA) = a proposed agreement between the issuer and the tenderer that seeks to formalise instructions to the successful service provider to deliver agreed services at specific levels and at an agreed cost to the client. In order to do that, the agreement (which often is an additional contract that accompanies the basic service contract) must describe clearly the service (inclusions and exclusions), the expected levels of service provision, including time frames (where applicable), how performance is to be measured (such as KPI) and evaluated, target performance levels, and what will happen if performance is inadequate or targets are not met, including penalties where appropriate. The agreement must also state clearly what will happen due to changes for contracts extended over time, which may call for additional addenda during the course of the service contract

short list = see ROI

SLA = Service Level Agreement

SLA with KPI = Service Level Agreement with KPI

SME = small and medium enterprise

SME (CPGs definition) = an Australian or New Zealand firm with fewer than 200 full time equivalent employees

sole trader = proposer/tenderer

SOR = statement of requirements

standards of performance = standards widely recognised (nationally or internationally) for identifying, describing, measuring, recording, and reporting performance

standing offer = the making of an offer by the tenderer for delivery of product or service and the acceptance by the issuer as acceptable but not entering into contract; the successful tenderer sits on the panel of successful tenderers; the issuer may then choose the tenderer in the future for particular requirements and enter into contract without having to go to tender; there may be a contract between the successful tenderer governing panel arrangements and separate contract(s) governing supply

statement of requirements (SOR) = section of the RFP/RFT stating clearly the full requirements of the issuer that if properly analysed will result in a full set of deliverables from the successful tenderer

statement of requirements (contents) = a list of goods and/or services to be provided, required outcomes, performance indicators, standards of performance, conditions/constraints that apply to the delivery of each of the goods and/or services

statement of requirements (dealing with) = the issuer will expect the tenderer to address each item in the statement of requirements in the order in which it appears. Each requirement is usually not of equal weight but should be addressed completely or risk disqualification as not meeting requirements

summation = addition; evaluation; leading to final result or conclusion

summative = dominated by the process of summation

tender = a written offer to contract goods or services at a specified cost or rate; a bid; a very formal response to the RFT, legalistic and complete, that seeks to understand the requirements of the Issuer who issued the RFT, as well as the statement of requirements of the project being tendered for

tender closing date = a date and time usually stated by the issuer on the front page of the RFT by which tenders must be lodged or be subject to the issuer's rules of disqualification as stated in the RFT

tender validity period = a period from the Tender Closing Date stated by the Issuer in which tenders shall remain open for acceptance by the Issuer

tenderer = sole trader/partnership/corporation/consortium responding to (lodging) Request for ROI or requesting and receiving RFT

tenderer profile = key information required to identify the tenderer and submitted with the tender under (statutory) declaration by the tenderer that the information supplied in the profile is true; information supplied in the profile usually needs to be sufficient to allow the preparation of contract by the issuer upon choice of successful tenderer (and therefore sufficient to complete payment for work under contract upon receipt of invoice which under most regulations is required to be the same)

ROI => tender

TTWT = tender technical writers team

units of measurement = See Australian legal units of measurement

validity period = see tender validity period