David Stapleton, CEO and founder of TenderSpace, explains how you can use the online service to protect your business, generate new working relationships and target the work you want.
Smart home technology, enhanced connectivity and LED lighting for the home can offer new opportunities and new business for many electricians. It is an exciting time as more appliances can be connected, monitored and controlled and it will no doubt be the electrician who plays the pivotal role in the new era of the ‘Internet of Things’ in our homes.
For many electrical contractors however, expanding their business doesn’t just mean learning about and installing new technologies. It will also involve making the leap from working purely in the domestic sector to investing in the certification, skills and resources required to operate and thrive in the commercial and public sector. It’s a familiar path to business growth, but one that can be daunting, especially as payment terms become longer and your company’s place in the construction supply chain becomes more complex.
Tools to expand
There are tools and services to help however. Certification and trade associations can help electricians to gain trusted accreditations, which are recognised by commercial and public specifiers. The correct insurance and health and safety policies will also be a crucial factor in a business’s appeal. Once ready, it will then be a matter of finding and targeting opportunities and developing business-generating relationships. As contractors grow, they will also have to be more proactive in protecting their business too.
This is where a platform called TenderSpace (www.thetenderspace.com) can help. It is an easy-to-use online service for property and construction professionals, which has been launched to give contractors the power to target precisely the work they want, before the competition.
Unlike its competitors, which inform users about new jobs once the procurement process has started and when key decisions have possibly already been made, TenderSpace focuses on opportunities that are still ‘live’ and potentially still at the feasibility stage.
Importantly, TenderSpace also allows public and private sector procurement managers to invite contractors to join a project and tender for the work. This gives contractors the chance to develop business-generating relationships with people requiring their expertise earlier in the procurement process.
Building a profile
The first step is to register with TenderSpace and you can do this right now, for free. You can then choose to upgrade your subscription as and when you need the more advanced services.
All public sector jobs are listed and are free to view. There is a detailed, free and intuitive ‘Profile Builder’, which not only reduces the time spent on the PAS91 Pre-Qualification Questionnaire (PQQs) but also allows electricians to show the public sector procurer their skills and expertise via a single link from TenderSpace. Profile Builder provides an online web profile just like a mini-website and is the perfect solution for electricians hoping to bid for smaller public sector projects under £100,000.
To help electricians manage projects and interact across the construction supply chain, TenderSpace features a comprehensive set of tools. These include a ‘ToolBox’, which gives users the ability to source products from over 11,000 manufacturers. You can also find unique job opportunities at the earliest possible stage and send expressions of interest to potential clients and employers. The designers have worked extremely hard to make TenderSpace a really easy platform to use, both for contractors and the procurement professionals seeking to collaborate and connect with each other.
TenderSpace has teamed up with PE to bring readers an exclusive first year subscription offer of just £140, including 20 credit checks. To take advantage of this offer, simply add the code PEDec16 when subscribing for 12 months.
Protect your growing business
As a business grows, it is important electricians take the necessary steps to protect themselves from the scourge of late payment. Thanks to its ‘Finance Checker’ service, TenderSpace gives electricians the ability to check the credit rating of potential project partners, main contractors and supply companies. It will also notify you if there is any change to a credit rating, helping users to protect their businesses and make more informed decisions about who you work with.
Finding new projects, collaborating with the supply chain and protecting your business is at the heart of what TenderSpace is about. Whether you are already working with property developers, local authorities, housing associations and commercial specifiers, or you are just starting on the path to doing so, TenderSpace can help you.
Find out more
Many of the tools on TenderSpace can be used for free once registered, with low cost subscriber upgrades available for multiple users and to access the ‘Work Finder’ facility. Prices start at £280 per year for up to two users.