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How to Submit and review bids

You have been asked to obtain three bids for an upcoming project. You contacted three contractors you found on Google and requested a bid. In return, you receive three bids that are at marginally different costs.

How do I award a contractor that can deliver the project per my expectations, within the timeframe, and adhere to the budget?

Lost in Translation: Why Providing a Scope of Work is Critical to Your Success

Despite having the same conversation with each contractor, the bids come back at various costs. Why? Because no matter how good of a communicator you are, you aren’t considering t the other person’s listening skills.  

A written Scope of Work will prove to be your best defense. Yes, it takes time to develop this document, but when done properly, it becomes a clear communication of the work to be performed and a document you and the contractor can refer back to if questions arise.

Factors to Keep in Mind When Evaluating Proposals

Why Choosing the Lowest Bid Might Not Be to Your Advantage

When budgets are tight, don’t be tempted to opt for the lowest bidder to save money. It is imperative to carefully evaluate whether this decision will be advantageous in the long run.

Tip: Review the bid submissions thoroughly to ensure comprehensive coverage of the scope of work. If a contractor has omitted or added a service, requesting a resubmission of the bid is imperative. Recognizing that errors can occur, allowing the contractor to revise the bid will mitigate the likelihood of receiving change orders upon submission of the final bill.

Is There a Value to Experience and Quality Assurance?

Certainly! Let's consider the pressure-washing industry as an example. After COVID-19, there was a notable increase in new pressure-washing businesses in the Charlotte area, why? Charlotte is one of the top 10 fastest growing cities in the U.S., so the demand is high. On the surface and in Google search results, it might appear all pressure-washing companies are created equally. However, the reality is that pressure washing requires training, on-the-job experience, and the expertise to safely and effectively clean any surface without causing damage. Let’s face it, there is a lot of smoke and mirrors on the web today.

Tip: Take the time to ask the contractor questions, for example:

·         How long have you and your team been pressure washing?

·         Do you have the staff and equipment to complete this job on time, and within budget?

·         What formal training do you provide for your technicians?

·         Do you follow OSHA guidelines?

A Low Bid vs. A Very Low Bid

If you are working with qualified contractors, the submitted qualified bids should be within a 5% margin of each other. Someone will always be lower, but no bid should be substantially lower.

Tip: This is a potential red flag if a bid is substantially lower. You can either contact the contractor and review the bid compared to the scope of work or eliminate them from the bid process.

Is There a Value to Building Relationships?

If you answered "No", I'm sorry if I have taken up your time. Professional relationships are similar to personal relationships in that they rely on trust, mutual respect, and the assurance of their availability when required.

In Conclusion:

Automatically selecting the lowest bid is a financial decision made solely on budget. It's important to consider the contractor's experience, previous interactions, and the assurance that they are capable and willing to address any issues that may arise.

This article is brought to you by Power Wash Charlotte.


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