How to bid on tender opportunities

Once you have registered your business and found a tender opportunity that interests you, you can start the bidding process. Each tender notice will clearly indicate the delivery method you must use to submit a bid.

The CanadaBuys tendering service displays tender notices from:

  • Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC)
  • other Government of Canada departments and agencies
  • the broader Canadian public sector
  • the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)

The Organization column of the tendering service’s search results will indicate which organization has posted the tender notice.

Opportunities from Public Services and Procurement Canada

PSPC uses SAP Ariba to post tender notices on behalf of other federal departments and agencies and Crown corporations. To bid on a tender opportunity posted in SAP Ariba, check out these how-to guides to help you through the process:

Opportunities from other Canadian government departments and agencies

Other federal departments or agencies posting on their own, and not through PSPC, will post tender notices directly to CanadaBuys. A solicitation document will be displayed within the notice, which you can download. The instructions on how to bid will appear in this document.

Opportunities from the broader Canadian public sector

CanadaBuys posts tender notices from the following organizations from across the Canadian public sector:

  • Provincial and territorial governments
  • Municipalities
  • Publicly funded academic institutions
  • Schools
  • Hospitals
  • Crown corporations

A link to the organization’s website will be provided in the tender notice, where you will find detailed instructions on how to bid.

Opportunities from the NATO Support and Procurement Agency

CanadaBuys also posts tender notices from the NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA). Use the "NATO" filter in the CanadaBuys tendering service to find these opportunities.

Learn more about how to find and bid on tender opportunities from the NSPA.

Preparing your bid

All tender opportunities are different, so read their descriptions carefully and address each point completely. Their descriptions will explain exactly how to prepare your bid, when it is due and how it will be evaluated.

Before you start:

  • Review and make sure you understand the clauses, general conditions and standard instructions
  • Refer to the Standard Acquisition Clauses and Conditions Manual
  • Make note of which criteria are mandatory and confirm you meet each one so that your bid is not considered incomplete
  • Remember that the contracting officer specified, not the buying organization, is your only point of contact during the bidding process

While each tender opportunity is unique, there are some common details you will need to provide in a bid, such as delivery dates and financial information.

For more information, refer to what makes up a bid.

How bids are evaluated

Bids are evaluated according to the selection method specified in the tender opportunity, normally on relevant technical merit and overall best value. To ensure fairness, financial and technical information are assessed separately. The bid must be evaluated against the criteria as they are written, so they cannot be changed after the bid closing date.

Learn more about the methods of evaluation.

How contracts are awarded

There are many methods used to select winning bids.

Read about the methods for selecting a bid.

Ways to get more information

There are a couple ways to get help or more information before and after the bidding process is completed.

Submitting questions

Follow the process specified in the bid solicitations as soon as possible if you:

  • have questions about the tender opportunity
  • think you have found an error in the tender opportunity
  • would like to request if the closing date can be extended

The contracting officer identified in the tender notice will respond to questions in a way that ensures that all bidders have access to the same information.

If you have questions about a tender opportunity posted in SAP Ariba, use the “compose message” function for that specific opportunity.

Learn more about how to submit questions in SAP Ariba before you bid.

Request a debrief

Following the results of a competitive process, every bidder has the right to a debriefing from the contracting officer.

Find out how and why you should request a debrief.

Attend free seminars

The Procurement Assistance Canada offers free seminars to businesses interested in learning more about the procurement process.

View the full list of upcoming seminars.

Some helpful information


Download the mobile app

Access SAP Ariba from your mobile device.

Download the SAP Ariba app on the App Store
Download the SAP Ariba app on Google Play

Search for tender notices on CanadaBuys.

How businesses can access tender opportunities is changing. Learn how to search for opportunities on CanadaBuys.

Get an overview of our policies and guidelines, procurement process, and more.


Contact us directly, or find your answers using resource guides.

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