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10 Go-to productivity tools for bidders

17 August 2021 • 6 minutes

Enhancing your productivity as a bidder isn't always easy, but these 10 productivity tools will help you do just that.

If there’s one thing that tenderers know, it’s that tendering can often be an arduous, complex, multi-step process that requires tenderers to be highly adaptive and agile. This is often easier said than done. With time management being crucial, and efficiency being the goal, tenderers should look for multiple ways to increase their productivity when tendering. This article will dive into 10 compelling tools that tenderers can use to benefit their tendering processes.

1. RescueTime

For those who struggle with time management when tendering, and wonder how time flies by so unproductively, RescueTime might just rescue you. This app shows you precisely where you spend your time, giving you insightful reports, and the ability to block those pesky distractions.

Features: automatic time tracking; detailed reports, trends, and insights; ability to set goals; offline time tracking; block distracting websites; ability to integrate RescueTime with other important apps (e.g. Calendar, Slack). Feature use varies depending on the pricing plan.
Available for: Mac, Windows, Google Chrome, Android, iOS.
Pricing: two plans on offer: ResueTime Lite and RescueTime Premium is ($12/month). RescueTime offers a free 14-day trial for their Premium plan.

2. Basecamp

For teams looking to collaborate remotely throughout the tendering process, Basecamp is the perfect real-time communication tool. It can be seen as a project management tool that helps teams improve the way they communicate, ultimately requiring fewer unproductive meetings. The software encompasses several tools necessary to project and compiles them into one place.

Features: assign to-do lists; access customizable message boards that can be shared with everyone or select individuals; create shareable schedules that can be merged with Google Calendar/iCal/Outlook; share documents and store files; real-time group chat; quick check-ins that help teams forgo time-consuming status meetings; client access; hill charts for progress; direct messaging; forward emails into BaseCamp for team discussions; team reports; notifications; search function.
Available for: Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android.
Pricing: $99/month for BaseCamp Business. A free 30-day trial is offered.

3. Todoist

Feel like you perform best with to-do lists? Todoist offers that and more and can be an invaluable tool for the tendering process. Todoist is an app that helps you organize tasks, set schedules, and meet deadlines. The main feature that sets Todoist apart is its ability to integrate across laptops, desktops, mobile devices, emails, and browsers.

Features: quickly add tasks; establish recurring due dates; task view; favorite tasks; create subsections for tasks and subtasks; prioritize tasks; delegate tasks; set notifications for comments, tasks completed…etc; allows task and project comments; view progress; connect Todoist with key apps; integrated temples; automated backups; add labels, filters, and themes; view activity logs. Feature use varies depending on the pricing plan.
Available for: Mac, Desktop, iOS, Android, Browser Extensions, Linux, and wearables (smartwatches).
Pricing: three plans offered by Todoist: the Free plan, the Premium ($3/month/user), and the Business plan ($5/month/user).

4. Freedom

If you get distracted easier and tend to go down the rabbit hole of social media and other such entertainment apps when tendering, Freedom can help with that. Freedom is a website blocker that stops users from getting carried away by distracting websites.

Features: block websites, block apps, block the internet, sync across devices, blocklists, advance scheduling, locked mode (where a Freedom session can’t be ended), ambient noise for focus, session history, session annotation.
Available for: Mac, Windows, Android, iOS, and Chrome.
Pricing: starts at $6.99/month. Free trial available.

5. CamScanner

We know that the tendering process can drown tenderers with paperwork and documents. If physical documents are still a part of your tendering process, CamScanner is an easy app that lets you scan, edit, and manage documents on your mobile phone.

Features: scan your documents on mobile, edit your images, OCR recognition (image to text) of 40 languages, syn on multiple devices at any time, and edit PDF files freely. Feature use varies depending on the pricing plan.
Available for: iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, and as a browser extension.
Pricing: Three plans offered: the Basic account, the Premium ($4.99/month/account), and the Business account ($6.99/month/account)

6. Spike

Easily overwhelmed by emails and don’t know which ones to tackle and how to do so? Spike is an email application that helps you break down emails in a conversational way (think WhatsApp or iMessage), thus stripping away the formal way they’re often presented in. This makes the emails easier, and more enjoyable, to respond to. Spike can be beneficial across all touchpoints of the tendering process, as it integrates notes, tasks, and real-time collaboration right inside your email inbox, making switching apps less of a hassle.

Features: send and receive conversational emails, collaborative note-taking, collaborative tasks, group chat, calendar syncing, advanced search, in-line RSVP, video and audio calls, cloud integration, schedule emails to be sent later, text-to-speech, send and receive voice notes, real-time collaboration, set reminders, drag and drop interface. Feature use varies depending on the pricing plan.
Available for: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android. A web version is also accessible.
Pricing: Four pricing plans available: Free, Pro ($4/month/account), Business ($6/month/account), and Enterprise ($40/month/account).

7. LiquidText

Tender documents can be quite complicated, convoluted, and long. Breaking these documents down to understand what the contracting authority really wants from a tenderer can often be difficult. For those who love dissecting documents into simpler terms, LiquidText can make highlighting, annotating, and searching through PDF documents a breeze.

Features: gather and organize documents, annotate, copy and outline documents, collaborate with colleagues in multiple ways, view maps of note connections, search through text, and export (PDF, DOCx) documents to be shared with others.
Available for: Mac, iOS, Windows
Pricing: Free to download with basic features. Upgrading to LiquidText Pro requires a one-time purchase of $30, though discounts apply.

8. Pomodor

If you’re fond of the Pomodoro technique for time management, Pomodor can be a tool to help you do that more efficiently. Pomodor also allows you to edit your timings to fit your needs. It’s a wonderful tool for those that want to increase the efficiency of their tendering process. Best of all? You don’t have to download any software to use Pomodor, as it’s completely web-based.

Haven’t heard of the Pomodoro technique? It’s simple. You work for 25 minutes, and then take a break for 5 minutes. Every 4–5 pomodoros, a longer break of 20–30 minutes is warranted.

Features: Set your durations for work, short break, long break; set the number of rounds; dark mode/light mode; notifications; work statistics available; label timer.
Available for: Web.
Pricing: Free.

9. DeskTime

Similar to RescueTime, DeskTime focuses more on the professional (team) setting, clearly distinguishing productive apps (and time spent) from unproductive apps (and time wasted). This helps teams understand each other’s performance and workflows.

Features: automatic time tracking, document title tracking, cost calculation (when employees are paid based on time invested into a project), absence calendar, offline time tracking, auto screenshots taken intermittently (highlighting everyone's productivity), Pomodoro timer, third party integrations, URL & app tracking, project tracking, private time option, invoicing, generate custom reports, shift scheduling. Feature use varies depending on the pricing plan.
Available for: Mac, Windows, Linux, iOS, Android
Pricing: Four pricing plans available: Lite (free), Pro, Premium, Enterprise. Pricing for each plan depends on the number of people on the team. This can be calculated on their website.

10. Otter.ai

If you’re the type of person who can’t remember key points in meetings, Otter.ai can help you refresh your memory without you having to manually jot down notes. Otter.ai automates meeting notes, highlighting keywords and providing users with full audio transcripts.

Features: real-time transcriptions; record and playback audio, generate keywords; search audios by keywords; add media to transcript, collaborate with groups; organize documents in folders; export audio and text; sync Zoom recordings; import audio; edit audio to skip silence; speaker voiceprints; time codes; usage statistics. Feature use varies depending on the pricing plan.
Available for: iOS and Android.
Pricing: Three pricing plans offered: Basic, Pro ($8.33/month/user), and Business ($20/month/user).

Now that you’re equipped with 10 handy productivity tools for work, we hope your tendering experience becomes smoother and more pleasant.