Factory Seminar – Procurement tenders

Venue details
Additional information

Online via Zoom (Link will be provided after registration) 

To pitch or not to pitch: Responding to procurement tenders and how this could be an opportunity.


What is the session about?

Join us for a Factory seminar for artists and creative businesses who want to find out who tenders and why. CTConsults Director Andrew Palmer will share how procurement tenders are important to a range of creative disciplines from a solo artist to major architectural practice, where you can find them and how you can build a tender. 

Informed by his 30 years of cultural and tourism industry experience, Andrew will share the knowledge he has developed throughout his career as well as the tips and tricks he looks to when responding to tenders today. This is a lively and informal online session so bring your questions and your note pad.


What will this session cover?

Andrew will take you through the tendering process and how, in time, you can make it work for you. There’ll also be opportunities for questions and discussion. 

  • Definitions – buzzwords, jargon and procurement processes 
  • Why bother? 
  • The attributes of a good bidder 
  • Who can and should tender, and why – from sole trader to mature business  
  • How to find and access tenders 
  • The big questions to ask when looking at a new tender 
  • How to prepare a tender – step-by-step-by-step 
  • Top tips #1: how to be bad 
  • What happens after you hit ‘submit’ 
  • What happens if you don’t win – and what happens when you do 
  • Top tips #2: how to be good 
  • All shapes and sizes – real case study examples 
  • Q&A / discussion  


Who is the session for?

  • People who feel unsure if procurement tenders are for them and their creative business 
  • People who have submitted procurement tenders but haven’t been successful yet and need some advice to improve 
  • People who find bidding/pitching difficult 
  • Students or people who are early in their career and want to start building a tool kit to help manage a sustainable career 


Who is delivering?

Andrew Palmer

Andrew has worked with the culture, heritage, tourism, design, marketing and place-making sectors for 30 years. He led the marketing and audience teams at two national museums and worked in creative brand and design agencies with clients as diverse as Suzuki MotoGP and the London School of Music & Media. In 2005 he set up an arts, culture & heritage consultancy and worked with over 100 clients in the following 17 years. These ranged from tiny volunteer-run theatre groups to the biggest festival in the UK. He was a founder-director of British Ceramics Biennial for a decade. One client was Manchester’s Creative Tourist, which grew into an agency – CTConsults. This consultancy practice works to place culture and communities at the heart of place-making and regeneration.

So he works with organisations, towns, cities, regions, countries, and consortia in the UK and Europe (and they all tender), delivering programmes and strategies through engagement and insight. Working with ‘places’ provides huge variety. With the CTC team, he’s produced a cultural tourism vision for London, worked with the National Forest to communicate their mission better through a new festival, helped Northern Ireland plan how it uses its rich cultural heritage to attract international visitors, given a conference keynote in Yekaterinburg on how post-industrial towns can be energised by creative industry talent, and created a new place brand for the city of York. To do this, CTC works with artists & makers, designers & copywriters, masterplanners & architects, economists & politicians, data analysts & researchers, entrepreneurs & investors, marketers & media, programmers & curators, fundraisers & government agencies, historians & academics, educators & students – anyone who can help.  

He’s currently working in Cumbria to ensure culture and tourism are at the heart of a brand new local authority, and is helping to launch a major new industrial heritage attraction in the North East.


How to book?

All Factory events are free and tickets are booked through the event pages on the BCB website.


What is Factory?

This workshop is proudly run as part of the creative business support programme Factory. Factory is a partnership between Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce, Staffordshire University, British Ceramics Biennial and ACAVA. The programme is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund. Visit our main Factory page for more information about other opportunities and workshops run through Factory. 


Online Access:

  • In advance of each event, we aim to share an overview of the event including tasks that may be given to participants so you can prepare
  • We will enable captions for anyone to access during the event and download after
  • We will record each online event so you can re-watch it
  • We will share a resource pack after the event including summary notes, relevant links shared during the event, the event transcript and the event recording

If there is anything we can do to support your participation in the event, please email rhiannon@britishceramicsbiennial.com to discuss what we can put in place for you.