Bid Selection Methods


Open Competitive Bidding:

When to Use:

Open competitive bidding is typically used for routine procurement when the items needed are widely available, have common specifications, and are of low value and low risk. This method is suitable when the effort required for evaluation is low, and the cost of participation is also low.


- Transparency: Open competitive bidding ensures transparency as all interested suppliers have equal access to the procurement opportunity.
- Competition: It promotes competition among suppliers, leading to potentially lower prices and better quality goods or services.
- Wide supplier base: Open competitive bidding allows a wide range of suppliers to participate, providing opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and local businesses.


- Time-consuming: The open competitive bidding process can be time-consuming, particularly for complex procurements, as it involves advertising, bid submission, and evaluation stages.
- High evaluation effort: If there are numerous bids received, the evaluation process can be resource-intensive.
- Limited customization: Open competitive bidding may not be suitable for procurements requiring specialized or customized goods or services.

Restricted Bidding:

When to Use: Restricted bidding is used when there is a need to limit the number of potential bidders, usually due to specific project requirements, technical complexity, or unique expertise. This method is employed when open competitive bidding may not be practical or when there is a need to engage prequalified suppliers.


- Qualified suppliers: Restricted bidding allows the procurement entity to engage with suppliers who have been prequalified based on specific criteria, ensuring they possess the necessary expertise and experience.
- Flexibility: This method offers more flexibility in selecting suppliers based on their qualifications and track record.
- Efficient evaluation: Restricted bidding typically involves a smaller number of bids, which can lead to a more streamlined evaluation process.


- Limited competition: The restricted bidding process may result in a limited number of suppliers being invited to participate, reducing the level of competition and potentially affecting pricing and quality.
- Reduced transparency: As the list of potential bidders is restricted, there may be less transparency compared to open competitive bidding.

Direct Selection:

When to Use: Direct selection, also known as single-source procurement or sole-source procurement, is used when there is only one supplier capable of meeting the specific requirements. It may occur when there is a unique product, patented technology, or a single qualified supplier available.


- Efficiency: Direct selection can be a time-efficient procurement method when there is only one suitable supplier, bypassing the need for a competitive process.
- Expertise and quality: When a specific supplier is known for their expertise or superior quality, direct selection ensures access to their services.
- Urgent or emergency situations: Direct selection can be appropriate for urgent or emergency procurements, where time is critical and a competitive process may not be feasible.


- Lack of competition: Direct selection eliminates competition, potentially resulting in higher costs or lower quality if the selected supplier does not perform up to expectations.
- Limited market exploration: Direct selection may prevent exploration of other potential suppliers or alternatives, limiting opportunities for innovation or cost savings.
- Transparency concerns: The lack of a competitive process can raise transparency concerns and may require additional justification and documentation to ensure accountability.