How is an Expression of Interest different to a Request for Tender and why?An Expression of Interest (EOI) is to gauge interest in tendering. It's a form of request to organisations or individuals to express an interest in providing particular goods or services, entering a lease agreement or other commercial arrangement.
The request typically seeks information from the respondents that demonstrate their capacity to perform a contract and can result in the respondent entering a negotiation for a contact or being shortlisted for a subsequent tender.
At Australian Tenders we publish information Australia-wide not only on tenders but also Expressions of Interest (EOIs). Expressions of Interest are widely used in Australia for a variety of purposes which include the following:
Expressions of Interest are often the first step in a multi-stage tender process whereby more detailed Requests for Proposals or Requests For Tenders are issued to organisations that are shortlisted or pre-registered through the EOI process. These tenders are sometimes referred to as Invited or Selected Tenders.
Expressions of Interest have very similar characteristics to a tender:
The principal difference between an EOI and a RFT, with the exception of lease agreements, is that there is typically no requirement for you to submit a price for the scope works. The general intent in issuing an Expression of Interest is not to immediately enter in to a contract with the successful respondent/s but rather enter some form of negotiation or process which may lead to a contract.
In the case of a tender your tender can be accepted and you can then be legally bound to enter into a contract for the scope of work defined. This is typically not the case for an EOI. You are usually not bound to undertake the work if successful.
EOIs are very similar to tenders, and like tenders the devil is in the detail. Be sure to read the EOI documents carefully, in particular the conditions of the EOI, to understand your legal obligations when submitting a response.