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Careers Spotlight: Hannah Godfrey, Graduate Bid Writer – National Careers Week 2021

March 5, 2021

You may have heard of Bid Writers, but what is their function in a business (hint: it’s a major one!), and what skills do you need to carry out this crucial role? Graduate Bid Writer, Hannah Godfrey, tells all below…



Describe what you do in your job.

I’m a Graduate Bid Writer – but I get a lot blank stares I get when I tell people that! In essence, a bid writer prepares (writes and designs) documents to help win work for a company.

What does a typical day look like in your role?

My day begins at 8am and typically commences with me checking my emails and making a to-do list for the day ahead. Whilst my role centres around writing bids and collating all the information needed from other areas of the business – I also check the work of the other bid writers in the team, and other colleagues also quality-check my work. We all work together to ensure that the proposals we put forward are the best possible.

What other jobs or work experience have you had?

My first ever job saw me working as a hairdressing assistant! My first job after leaving university was Office Administration across bids, marketing and HR departments; this is what got me interested in bids in the first place.

What process did you have to follow in order to get your job?

Application (CV and covering letter) followed by two-stage interview including a test to assess my writing skills.

What part of your job do you enjoy the most?

I really enjoy seeing projects through from design to finish. It’s amazing to see how much the projects we work on help people on day-to-day basis –  i.e. care homes/social housing projects.

What skills are required to do your job?

Organisation is the most important skill as we have strict deadlines to meet. Being personable and communicative is key as we are a team who works across the business and needs to be able to speak to people in different divisions and across a multitude of roles. Finally, but not the least important by any means, good written skills are a must!

What role-specific qualifications do you think are needed to do your job?

A-Levels in an English-based subject (e.g. language/literature) certainly, and a qualification in something that has transferrable skills – e.g. I did a law with business degree and that helps with writing.

What was the highest level of qualification you needed from school, college or university to do your role?

GCSE-level computer science grades

What subject options (curriculum subjects) would you recommend someone choose to do your role?

English, Business, IT/Design.

What training at work do you undertake to help you do your job?

Software training (e.g. InDesign) and we keep up to date with the latest legislations and best practices through seminars/webinars.

What personality traits compliment your role?

I am super organised which helps massively with meeting deadlines and scheduling meetings with people across the business. I’d like to think I’m friendly and personable, which helps when talking to people across the business – especially when you’re asking for something! I also very much enjoy working as part of a team, which is a huge part of working in bids.

Do you have any interests that complement your job role?

I enjoy reading, which helps you to pick up good vocabulary for writing.

How many years of experience do you need to do your job?

With this being a graduate position, I didn’t need any experience of bid writing to do my job – I am learning as I go!


What’s the next step for you in terms of your career, and how will you get there?

I’m currently working through my tailored Personal Development Plan after which I’ll have accumulated the skills and experience to become a Bid Writer. The Covid-19 pandemic means I haven’t been able to get out on site as much as I would have liked to, and that’s something I’m looking forward to doing once lockdown restrictions lift.

At the moment I tend to focus on refurb/engineering services/construction/regen bids. But the end goal is that I will be able to write for all divisions and perhaps have a specialist couple of areas e.g. equality and diversity or environmental best practice.

For more information about the career opportunities available at J Tomlinson, please visit our Careers Page at www.jtomlinson.co.uk/careers

If the role your searching for isn’t currently on our website, feel free to send a copy of your CV and covering letter to recruitment@jtomlinson.co.uk

J Tomlinson, which was founded in Nottingham the 1950s, works primarily across the Midlands, Yorkshire and Northern and Central England.

The company provides a range of sustainable building solutions including refurbishment, repairs and maintenance, engineering services, extra care construction, renewable energy, and facilities management, working across a range of key sectors including extra care, healthcare, blue light, social housing and local government.

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