Tender preparation and planning (Construction Direction 3.1 and Instruction 3.1)

Explains planning and preparation requirements that will guide the procurement process for public construction.

Tender preparation and planning (Direction 3.1)

Effective date: 1 July 2018


Value for money, scalability and probity are procurement principles that are specifically relevant to tender preparation and processes.

Of particular relevance to this Direction are the following construction procurement principles:

  • appropriately planning and managing Public Construction Procurement to deliver procurement objectives
  • employing the appropriate Procurement Models and processes taking account of the complexity and value of the project and supplier market capability
  • reducing unnecessary burden of Public Construction Procurement for all parties
  • encouraging appropriate innovation and responsiveness in the supplier market
  • ensuring appropriate competition and contestability when undertaking Public Construction Procurement
  • conducting Public Construction Procurement processes in an efficient and timely manner
  • treating all tender participants fairly and equally
  • undertaking Public Construction Procurement in accordance with the relevant legislation, policy, guidance and any mandatory requirements in these Directions

3.1 Tender preparation and planning

Before starting a process to engage a supplier to perform Works or Construction Services, Agencies must ensure that appropriate preparation and planning are undertaken to guide the tender process from tender development to contract award, as well as for project delivery and contract management. Planning should be an active process that responds to changes in the delivery environment and informs decision making throughout the tender process and project delivery.

The amount of preparation undertaken should be in line with the risk and complexity of the procurement. While there is no one-size-fits all approach, the preparation should ensure the following matters are addressed at the appropriate time:

(a) clear procurement objectives

(b) market analysis, market sounding and engagement strategy

(c) tender strategy

(d) key dates and time periods during the tender process

(e) tender evaluation and the evaluation process

(f) management of probity

(g) contract management

(h) governance and resourcing

Tender preparation and planning (Instruction 3.1)

Effective date:  1 July 2018

Objective:  To define requirements for Agencies in undertaking tender planning

3.1.1 Requirements for tender planning

(a) Tender Strategy

The tender strategy must document the:

(i) project staging and structuring

(ii) scope of works being tendered

(iii) tender approach

(iv) form of invitation to tender

(b) Key dates and time periods during the tender process

Key dates and time periods that should be documented as part of the tender planning include the:

(i) time period for developing Tender Documentation, including site information, specifications, contract documents, and the tender evaluation plan

(ii) dates for releasing of notices and Tender Documentation to the market

(iii) time period for tender participants to submit a response

(iv) evaluation period

(v) time to obtain relevant approvals both internally and from other Agencies

3.1.2 Adherence to key dates and time periods

While tender planning and the timing of procurements need to respond to changing circumstances, once a Tender Notice has been issued, Agencies should endeavour to adhere to the time periods communicated to tender participants (and potential participants), in particular tender open periods and evaluation periods.

Tools and support

The Construction Toolkit includes key documents, guidance and information relating to the Ministerial Directions and Instructions.

For further information about the Ministerial Directions and Instruction for public construction procurement, please contact the Construction Policy Team.