Questions about a tender? These organisations can help

If you want to supply products or services to the government, you must participate in a tender process. A tender process gives companies an equal opportunity to be considered for a contract. It takes time to submit a tender. You can read more about which parties can help you with questions about tenders here.

Some examples of tender processes include a government organisation buying office supplies or solar panels. Or services like communications consulting or market research. You can only participate in a tender if you meet the requirements for the contract and the tender procedure

Set aside enough time

It takes time to submit a tender. You will have to go through a number of steps. The government organisation will evaluate your tender based on the items listed in the tender document. They will check if the tender meets the requirements. Then they will consider the price and how you plan on implementing their preferences. The company with the best evaluation will get the contract. If the government organisation chooses your company, you can sign a contract for the assignment.

Participating in a tender process takes time, explains John Franck. His company Arbo Concern has won several tenders over the past few years. “I sometimes spend five days answering questions, reading information, writing the offer, and finding and creating the right documents.” Franck carefully chooses which calls for tenders he responds to. “I focus on assignments in my field of expertise. This will maximise the chance of success. I do not choose to participate if it takes too much time, and the chance of success is limited.”

Submit a complete offer on time

If you decide to participate in a tender process, you must submit all of the documents complete and on time. With all of the experience that Franck has gained over the past few years, he can work more efficiently when putting together a tender. “Looking for the requested documents, like statements from the Dutch tax authorities, is a time-consuming job. I have created a file with all of those documents. That saves a lot of time for the next tender.”

Enlist help

When a European call for tenders is posted on a tender platform, you can reply and submit a tender. The call for tenders explains how you can do that. Would you like more information about tenders in general, or about a specific assignment? The following organisations can help you.

Explanation of the laws and regulations: is an information platform for laws and regulations that apply to entrepreneurs. This site offers information from the government, including an explanation about working for the government via a tender procedure.

Questions about technology: TenderNed

You can find all of the European calls for tenders by the Dutch government in one place at TenderNed (in Dutch). The site offers information about how to register your company, how to ask questions during a tender process, and how to participate in a tender. Do you have technical questions about how to create an account or change a password? The Servicedesk (in Dutch) can help you when you participate in a tender via TenderNed. TenderNed also has a list of bureaus (in Dutch) that can support you in using TenderNed, looking for relevant calls for tenders, and registering for a digital tender.
Some government organisations use a different tender system (in Dutch). But the call for tenders will still be posted on TenderNed. You still need to register with the other platform first to submit a tender for these calls.

Questions about the contract: Contracting authority

You can contact the government organisation that posted the call for tenders to ask any questions about the content or conditions of an assignment or the tender procedure itself. The government organisation is also referred to as the ‘contracting authority’. You can ask them questions about criteria that you do not understand, or that can be interpreted in different ways. The contracting authority, such as a municipality or government ministry, will give an explanation. The tender documents explain how you can ask questions. The questions you ask, and the answers, will be published in an Information Notice. Always check the Information Notice to see if someone else has already asked the question. You may find the answer there.

General questions: PIANOo Dutch Public Procurement Expertise Centre

PIANOo is the Dutch Public Procurement Expertise Centre of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate (EZK). This is where you can find background information about the purchasing and tendering policy. PIANOo does not offer support, and makes no statements about things like the choice for a specific tendering procedure.

Industry association

You can also contact your industry association for advice and support with tendering procedures.


The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate (EKZ) has a list of helpdesks run by industry- and entrepreneur organisations, for all your questions about purchasing and tendering. Some organisations require you to be a member, and some helpdesks (in Dutch) will charge a fee for advice.