Are you certified to APMP Foundation?

With the UK job market becoming ever-more competitive, candidates need to bring their ‘A game’ to interviews and ensure their CVs are as strong as possible. Qualifications and experience help candidates to stand out, but there’s a growing requirement – especially for younger candidates – to demonstrate a commitment to their continuing professional development. “You’ve graduated, got a year or two under your belt, but now what?”

APMP Foundation Certification

One way to demonstrate a commitment to your career, and prove that you keep your knowledge up to date, is through membership of the APMP – the Association of Proposal Management Professionals. More employers are asking for candidates to be APMP certified, and APMP Foundation is a mandatory requirement for some companies.

Recent figures from the APMP show that there are now over 7,000 people worldwide that are certified to Foundation level. This is great news for our industry, but what percentage of bid and proposal professionals does this represent? If you have Foundation, it’s possible that you are part of the elite club – the ones with the advantage at interview. But if you don’t have it, then you’d better think about adding it to your CV.

Nigel Hudson is a Senior Professional Development Consultant for Strategic Proposals – one of only three APMP Approved Training Organisations (ATOs) in the UK. An APMP Professional, he’s worked his way through each level of certification and will be co-delivering the APMP Foundation training at this year’s APMP UK Conference. We asked him what he thinks about the growing need for certification. Here’s what he said:

“The trend is inevitable. Employers seek the best talent, especially people who can bring best practice into their company. Research conducted on behalf of APMP demonstrates that organisations that employ ‘appropriately competent professionals’ in proposal management roles win significantly more business than those that do not. But demand has to start with individuals realising that they own their development, that they should proactively be seeking new skills and knowledge.”

He continued:

“With APMP Foundation, we’ve run six public courses in the UK this year, and many more in-house sessions. The thing I’ve noticed most is the attendees’ proactivity, maturity, energy and desire to perform. They’re markedly more ‘switched on’ than people who shy away from proving or bettering themselves. They know that certification gives them the edge. They’ve honed their skills, topped up their knowledge, and understand how to recognise and demonstrate best practice. Which has to be appealing to their current or would-be employers. And it’s motivating for them, too. Gaining tangible proof of competency as a proposal professional attracts respect and credibility from colleagues. Which is a good thing on a great many levels.”

Nigel concluded by saying that the new APMP syllabus is encouraging the uptake of latest best practice. Places for Strategic Proposals’ September public course sold out in record time, but places are thankfully still available for their pre-conference Foundation course at Wokefield Park on 18th October. Tickets are priced at £495.00 plus VAT, and can be purchased here.

To learn more about bid training, click here.

Bid Solutions is proud to be sponsoring the 2016 APMP UK People Development Award. Nominate your organisation before 15th August.


The People Development Award recognises an organisation that has furthered the capability and/or impact of their staff in a bid/proposal function, as well as others involved in proposal development (e.g. sales, content contributors, senior execs) to the success of the business. The winners will be announced at the Annual Conference dinner in October.

How to Nominate for the People Development Award

Applications close on the 15th August. You can nominate here:

Full details of the conference can be found here:

To view our latest vacancies for bid and proposal professionals, follow this link. To help us connect you with a winner to add to your team, follow this link.

Construction, Infrastructure and Rail news

This week’s Construction, Infrastructure and Rail news:

It was reported this week that Crossrail has nearly reached its 75% completion milestone of the new Elizabeth line station at Liverpool Street. The next focus for the project is fitting out the stations and tunnels to operate the railway.

Willmott Dixon has won the £34m Plymouth City Council contract to build the new History Centre, which will include the City Museum, Art Gallery, Central Library and to transform St Luke’s Church buildings into a brand new cultural and heritage attraction. This History Centre is due to open in 2020.

Morrison Utility Services has won the £250m Yorkshire Water three-year contract extension to its water services agreement.

Also this week the New Transport Secretary Chris Grayling confirmed he will back the HS2 high-speed rail contract to link London to Birmingham by 2026 following fears he would scrap the project following Brexit.

To view our latest vacancies for bid and proposal professionals, follow this link. To help us connect you with a winner to add to your team, follow this link.

Construction, Infrastructure and Rail News

This week’s Construction, Infrastructure, and Rail news:

Rail for London started preparing a shortlist of firms to bid for the £150m contract to construct an elevated extension from an existing railway line and a new station at Barking Riverside. The project is expected to start early 2018 with a completion date of summer 2020. The approved design for this project will be provided by Rail for London to firms invited to tender.

The Glasgow City Centre Development has named Gleeds as the Project Manager and Cost Manager for the £75m project. The project has planned a 12-storey new build element, incorporating 130,000 sq. ft. of office space, remodeling and refurbishment of a second building, formerly home to the retailer BHS. Subject to approvals the work is expected to begin in 2017.

The £4.2bn Thames Tideway Tunnel (Super-Sewer) project to clean up London’s river has selected Arcadis, Turner & Townsend and Gardiner & Theobold (G&T) to provide a variety of consultancy services on the project over the next four years. Construction of the 25km sewer tunnel under London is set to start this year and be completed in 2023.

The biggest news this week, of course, was Theresa May becoming our new Prime Minister, but what effect will this have on housing and infrastructure for the UK? Please email your views to

To view our latest vacancies for bid and proposal professionals, follow this link. To help us connect you with a winner to add to your team, follow this link.

Construction, Infrastructure and Rail News

This weeks Construction, Infrastructure and Rail news:

UK parliament are inviting contractors’ views on a programme of refurbishment works to the UK parliamentary estate. Restoration of the listed buildings and renewed electrical services is expected to take 3 – 4 years to complete and cost somewhere between £150m to £650m. Parliament’s Strategic Estates department is looking for advice on procurement strategy and risks via a questionnaire to be returned by 3rd August.


The University of East London are looking for a developer to replace a temporary building with new facilities of at least 4,500 m2. The estimated contract value is between £25m – £35m. As part of the contract the University is looking for a land swap deal with a developer that can deliver the building at minimal cost in exchange for commercial use of release land.


HS2 Ltd has proposed a revised route of HS2 in a report released this week. The revision would see the route travel through Sheffield City Centre rather than Meadowhall station. It will run east towards the M18 before rejoining the original route south of the M62. HS2 Ltd has said the new plans would save them £1bn. However, a newly built housing estate in Mexborough will now have to be demolished to enable the new line to be built.


The Bam Nuttall and Mott Macdonald (BMM) joint venture will be starting work on the 2nd phase of the Exeter flood defence scheme next week. The scheme will reduce flood risk to 3,200 homes and businesses and work will continue over the next two years.

To view our latest vacancies for bid and proposal professionals, follow this link. To help us connect you with a winner to add to your team, follow this link.

HS2 Supply Chain Roadshow

Following on from last year’s success, HS2 Ltd has hosted a number of HS2 Supply Chain roadshow events across the UK over the last few months. Events took place in London and Birmingham this week and draw to a close at the final event in Aberdeen in September. One of our Senior Consultants, Lavanya Ram, attended the London show on Wednesday and shares her thoughts here:

Report from the HS2 Supply Chain Roadshow

The roadshow was a great event for companies interested in exploring the thousands of supply chain opportunities created by HS2. The event was buzzing with individuals wanting to find out more about the giant long-term project that offers a huge opportunity for British businesses to bid for billions of pounds worth of contracts.

The day was extremely well organised through presentations, face time with HS2 experts and provided a great platform for networking.

The HS2 experts were able to offer valuable advice on the scale and timing of available opportunities and also understand what they want from their supply chain. There was also information provided on what can be done now to ensure your business is ready to respond to opportunities in the future.

HS2 Representatives were available throughout the day and were happy to answer individual questions about their requirements relating to their strategic goals.

If you have attended the Roadshow we would love to hear your thoughts. Contact us on or join the discussion on our LinkedIn group.

To view our latest vacancies for bid and proposal professionals, follow this link. To help us connect you with a winner to add to your team, follow this link.

Post Brexit Procurement Regime

Following the announcement last week that the UK will be leaving the European Union, many questions have been raised regarding the future and how the decision will affect our home and working lives.

Our Public Sector Bidding Expert, Andy Haigh was asked the following questions which many of us will have pondered in the run-up to and post-referendum,

  1. What will the impact of Brexit be for public sector procurement from now until the exit point?
  2. What sort of public contract procurement regime may follow?

Post-Brexit Procurement

Andy shares his thoughts here:

We all know that the EU tendering processes, as adopted into UK legislation, impose processes and burdens upon public sector organisations and those commercial suppliers looking to win contracts with them, alike. However, the fundamental principles underpinning the tendering processes seek to provide an unbiased, open and fair environment within which any supplier can have an equal chance of competing to win. They also seek to eradicate any possibility of corruption influencing the outcome, whilst regularly evolving the processes and options within the system to reduce the costs on and get a better result for all parties.

My belief is that this procurement approach will not be abandoned either during the preparations for Brexit or after.

I, also, think it unlikely that the public sector will abandon the majority of the specific systems and approaches to procurement that it currently operates. It may engage in some tuning. However, the current processes, albeit somewhat cumbersome have, in the main, been proven to work. We have a very sizable investment in these processes, both within and without the public sector which will not be abandoned lightly.

I would argue that no right minded person would want to go back to the possibly biased and corrupt practices of the past. Moreover, I suggest that if we ignore those cases where the underlying specification may be wrong or unwise, the current systems do get good value for money for the taxpayer.

Indeed, you can make a strong case that they always achieve the best value in terms of what is asked for at the time it is being asked. We often hear about procurement disasters. However, the core procurement system design or process is rarely the culprit. It is the people who cannot decide what they want, try to buy the wrong things or who change their minds after the procurement activity starts.

Therefore, I think in the short term there will be considerable pressure to maintain the underlying principles of public sector procurement and the simplest way of achieving that is to continue with what is already working. Once we leave, I would expect to see enabling legislation to keep the current procurement act in force, passed very early after the leave process is begun. Then, in time, the UK and EU procurement systems may slowly diverge. However, I would expect the essence of the rules to stay completely in line with the EU public sector procurement legislation development. We want a fair system and, in any case, any subsequent trade agreement with the EU will probably require the adoption of EU public sector procurement systems as a part of that agreement.


To view this Q&A or ask a question of your own please visit: 

Construction, Infrastructure and Rail News

This week’s Construction, Infrastructure, and Rail news:

Herefordshire county council are looking for a development partner for their major housing development plans. They are planning to form a joint venture company that could deliver anywhere between £10m – £1bn worth of construction work over the next 20 years. The contract notice has been published in the OJEU and the winning bidder is set to be announced in April 2017.


Highways England have revealed plans of a joint venture project with Sisk Lagan to build a triple-decker roundabout. The structure forms part of the A19 / A1058 Coast Road junction improvement works in North Tyneside. The project will involve lowering the A19 beneath the existing A1058 Coast Road and roundabout to reduce congestion. Work is due to start in August.


Morgan Sindall has been awarded a £39.5m contract to design and build a new Faculty of Health & Social Sciences building for Bournemouth University. It will be built on the Lansdowne campus and used by more than 4,000 students.


Interserve has won a £60m facilities management contract with JLL to provide cleaning, pest control, and security services at 18 UK shopping centres. This also includes the provision of standalone cleaning services for JLL office across Central London worth £9.5m per year.


The future South Western train operator must be able to significantly reduce journey times according to details of the ITT that have been published. In the document the DfT state that the successful franchisee should reduce journey times “above and beyond” the train service specification. It also states that the new franchisee is required to adopt the new Rail Industry Sustainable Development principles and should work with stakeholders to ensure disruption is kept to a minimum.

To view our latest vacancies for bid and proposal professionals, follow this link. To help us connect you with a winner to add to your team, follow this link.