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sheetz bid

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by clark lawn, Sep 3, 2010.

  1. clark lawn

    clark lawn PlowSite.com Addict
    from NE ohio
    Messages: 1,233

    i just got a bid pack for sheetz the first thing is says is the plowing is up to the store manager. they want a set price per plow but how can i do that if the manger gets to say when it get done. what if they wait until it is been driven on and packed down and then we get more snow on it. i can see it now with some young manager trying to get a bigger bonus by holding off on the plowing.

    only way i would even think about bidding it is by the hour, what would you guys do?
  2. kramer56

    kramer56 Senior Member
    Messages: 595

    bid the way you want and if you are not awarded it watch the guy breaks his stuff and loses his ass on hours. They really dont know how pride we take in our ability to get the job done right and looking good. You really need to explain to them what can happen to their lot and to the customers. Maybe find on youtube or somewhere a vid of driven on parking lots. Just a thought.
  3. MahonLawnCare

    MahonLawnCare Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 848

    someone got a sheetz bid packet from AGMG!! lol
  4. clark lawn

    clark lawn PlowSite.com Addict
    from NE ohio
    Messages: 1,233

    ya i did Adam its about a joke isnt it
  5. Rich Arlington

    Rich Arlington Member
    Messages: 76

    What are your questions concerning Sheetz...
    we have done them for over 12 years... they are the best account you can have... they will want plowed & salted just about every inch, you will make money... just ask me 814-490-4700
  6. csi.northcoast

    csi.northcoast Senior Member
    Messages: 320

    All i can say is wow, contractors get something to bid on and then they ***** about it. If you don't like the bid package don't bid on it .. I am sure Rich will get enough other people to bid on it who want to do it....
  7. Lily

    Lily Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    Not sure if that is the point Rich?


    Not sure if that was the point, or joke so to speak. I think there is a vibe that most of your packets to bid are just fishing. I know I have yet to see any work or action after doing leg work and submitting quote for numerous sites for you or Crystal. And last year we were flat out lied to about the Dollar General sites by more than one person at your firm when we were suspicous and already awarded some a week earlier by another firm. Only after being told we absolutely have ALL of the D.G.'s in area and then days later got a form letter saying oopsie, our bad, someone goofed.

    Not meaning to attack, however, it was not really fair and I am sure many people are just tired of doing all of the leg work to get not a drop of work. And to make it worse we were pressured into staying on a weekend after getting less than 24 hours to submit all of your bid info, but first we had to sign up to get on list/qualify. I would like myself and the rest of my office staff to get that weekend back, including our insurance agents, bidders, etc. We were told it would open up doors for other work, so far all it has done is pretty much given us the equivalent of spam in our inbox from your firm, as most quotes are not even remotely close to us and like many have said before, just fishing for us to do your homework to NOT get anywhere.

    There are only so many times you can put a quote in for a local Sheets to see it go nowhere and learn the same guy is working for another firm as before. And I am sorry, you should have your numbers by now anyway, just submit it yourself and then when you actually have it, email us and we can get somewhere!!! Again, not meaning to attack but I have been reading your emails and as romatic they sound, your system beats us down as well and has many of just tired of getting used.
  8. clark lawn

    clark lawn PlowSite.com Addict
    from NE ohio
    Messages: 1,233

    i have stopped at the sheetz around here in the middle of a snow storm and the lots were in HORRIBLE condition. they seem to want to wait til the snow is all done and then get it plowed out, and i dont think they have ever been salted. 2 years ago we had an ice storm, i stopped to get a coffee at one on my way back to the shop, about 10 o'clock sunday morning. i couldnt even get up the ramp into the place it was so slick.

    that seems to be the norm around here though for most commercial places. i had a thread on here about the local Pizza Hut last winter that a couple days after the snow you still had to have 4wd to get around in the parking lot.

    maybe it is just this area but when i read about how you have to be legit to get commercial anything none of that is true around here. i know a few guys that plow on the side no insurance, no taxes, get paid cash when they are done and they have alot of commercial stuff because they work for 40/hr.
  9. MahonLawnCare

    MahonLawnCare Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 848

    Refer to quote directly below yours chief
  10. Lily

    Lily Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    Sorry, I meant Sheetz, not Sheets!!! Ooops. My bad, and just to clarify - I don't mind doing quotes, and are excited by new opportunites to bid - that is a big part of my job. However, I just don't like being lied to or led on to get info and or pricing and then only learn it was a fishing expedition. And since I am getting quotes from 100's of miles away, I have not a clue how work is distributed fairly when so many packets are being sent out. It was certainly not presented to us that way, had we known (and trust us we questioned reps up and down) we would have not stressed and paid staff overtime to waste time. Again, not trying to attack but it took everything in my being not to go off last season after the D.G. fiasco. Not cool. Now I just laugh at it like everyone else!!!!
  11. Rich Arlington

    Rich Arlington Member
    Messages: 76

    No one lied about the DG.. we did have the contract but after a careful review of the changes to scope of work we declined to accept it. it was them that changed... the original scope had salting as extra the new scope had salting included but we would still had to do them at the price we submitted just for plowing... so we chose to walk away... that is why you got the letter after the fact... Sorry for any inconvienence but it just was not fair to the contractors....

    as for bidding and not getting anything... that is because we use your pricing and when we are not the lowest bid we dont win.... I will not just price things and then come back to you guys and say here is the price take it or leave it....
  12. merrimacmill

    merrimacmill PlowSite.com Addict
    from MA
    Messages: 1,822

    Its really no different than if these places called you up directly to place a bid. Just because you measure it out, calculate it, and then prepare it does not mean that you will get it. In fact bidding for Rich is still less work. All you have to do is write some numbers down and send an e-mail, instead of having to "sell" your services. So I don't see what the big problem here is.

    I do realize that I will be asked to bid on a lot of stuff that I won't get, but isn't that the cost of doing business? I just got a RFP from AGMG for very large parking lot in my area the other day that I have happen to have my sights on for a couple years now. I don't know what my odds are, but they're better now than previous years since I am at least being asked to bid.

    I really don't mind working for nationals, I think I just have an easier time accepting it than you guys because its the industry I came into. But I also see it as an opportunity for guys like me who are still fairly new in the industry. I do really good work on my lots, not a question about it. I take a lot of pride in building a reputation like that to follow me. But around here, its hard to get into the large lots unless you know all the right people and have been in the game more than a decade. Working with the nationals put me on an accelerated path to gaining a more serious reputation by awarding me contracts like Lowes. I performed great work on that site, and it really boosted my local reputation for when I am making local sales. When I am trying to sell our services to a local manager of an industrial facility, they always comment "Oh, you guys did the Lowes right? It looked great all winter, I want my lot to look like that". There is no better marketing than that!

    But anyways, sorry to hijack your thread.
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2010
  13. Lily

    Lily Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    Hi Rich,
    When you first came on you said:

    “Basically what makes us different is that Myself Crystal, and Mike Nelson have over 25 years experience as snow contractors ourselves. so we get it. Other items are we deliver on what we promise both to the customer and the contractor. We are here to answer questions, deal with problems, and truly understand what you are up against”

    You asked for it, here it is. I also remember you originally saying when questioned early on is that the only bid you guys ever retracted was Wachovia?! I don't understand, it sounds like someone in your firm jumped the gun in awarding D.G.’s (and I believe the memo spelled something out to that effect) and I know for a fact that was the main reason we asked over and over again as we were told yes, we absolutely have ALL of the sites in our area and its solid!!!!! Why award site if in reality your dealings were not set in stone??? When we consulted again with the sites we were awarded (with a different firm we worked for years) a week earlier and continue to plow for, they told us it was a flat out lie and to not fall for it - they knew they had the sites and to just keep on as before (which we did). What kind of contract did you have if corporate was still coming back with counter offers and terms? I am sure there is more than I care to know, and I NEVER had this happen with any other maintenance company, but, what’s done is done, all I can do is move on an learn from it - and give you input so we all don't have this happen again. I am sure there are many people on this site that feel the same or had a similar experience. I am trying my best to not just be flat our combative, please bear with me if it sounds that way - I do want you to understand our point of view if that is what one of your main goals is. I have kept quiet up to this point but I can’t just sit and not share my experience thus far anymore. Sorry, this may be a long manifesto! I held this in for a year.

    I guess what I didn't care for at the time was all of the paperwork asked of us that was given to us on a Friday afternoon and needed to be in by the next day, as we had to first go through the plethora of setup work from you - we had to have our insurance agents stay late, bidders go out and measure, etc. – if your deal was falling apart and shortly after dismissed, then I have a problem with the urgency of it all as is the case with a lot of your bids we got, but this was over the top. It would have been fine to at least give us until Monday if still in negotiations anyway. Mike went as far as to say he wanted to come and visit our site and we had a lot of optimism about the infamous Sheetz as well, yet you are the first one to admit most of your bids are too high and go nowhere and can't help feel it was to just sell us into filling a void in paperwork you needed.

    All we have thus far a year later is a whole bunch of bids you ask for, no work, no visits, and no gain anywhere on horizon. I find it a bit curious that you now are sort of putting the "blame" back on us for bidding too high with your reply above. I also find it interesting of how you present the "bidding opportunities" via email until someone catches on and realizes its pure fishing and or doing the homework for you to put your bid in the majority of the time. If you want input from the field, that is my two cents. I have no problem with bidding and setup work, however, I really don't know what you ultimately are presenting to corporate and how you are coming up with your numbers, and that is your business. But since I am asked for bids IN YOUR neck of the woods, why- if you are doing the same work as me, would you not award yourself the contract? So why give me an illusion I have a shot at it or just be real I am helping you collect data? And if you really want to be on our side of things, how about not just going by numbers and having a bit of loyalty - don't ask me for numbers waaayy out of my area, that just spells out to me it’s just to add to your formula (and just give naive bidders the impression they have a shot at these sites).

    Again, I know you have to play the game; I just am having a hard time swallowing the poetic story of how you are so different. You are different, you constantly ask us for bids and don’t give us work, I can say I have never run into it before. Fool me once shame on you……. you get the picture. I am so happy for all of you who do get work and can deal with them, however, I think there are just as many that are my side of the fence. If we want to put it all out there, I have heard enough and I want to keep you in the know on my side. Please back me up contractors so Rich gets what I am trying to convey.

    Overall I can’t help but feel we were duped with a lot of slick talk and promises that have yet to reap any benefits, and the influx of bid requests is a bit excessive in my inbox (most of which are in your neck of the woods, not mine or out of state). And as for D.G, when it all fell apart, your company was silent all of the sudden and we got a form letter saying someone goofed -yet beforehand, we got call after call and it was such a big hurry to fulfill all of your paperwork and then crickets. A phone call or at least a return phone call from someone in this case would have been appreciated and ethical. I missed a vacation and paid my staff overtime to put this in place, we also turned down another opportunity because we were told we had all of these sites to cover in area & didn’t want to over commit. So, no, I am not crying because I don't like bidding, it’s my job, but I am still furious to see you trying to come in as our savior when you are just putting a different spin on things like the nationals. At least they HAVE the sites they want to beat me down on!!!! P.S. The D.G. terms/pricing you gave us were not that great either, so not sure why you keep trying to say you are so different form nationals if corporate has so much dictate of what is going on???? And from what you are saying, AFTER contracts are awarded!

    Yet we have to just sit and be a puppet and try not to be upset about it when our gut is telling us we are just being used. The face of this business is taking a really scary turn, I hope everyone out there who has a hope it will all cycle back or change in our favor is right, but in the meantime I have employees and equipment I need to keep going or I won’t be around to see it. If I had to rely on pinning my hopes on companies who bid like this, I would be looking for a job INSIDE one of these stores, not out. But, I will adapt and move on, but I must say my peace as far as my experience after seeing some things I totally did not experience after your sales pitch. And your posts trying to say otherwish and double speaking or leaving out things. I have questions before I proceed in entertaining your emails, hopefully you can understand my vantage point.

    As I said, it took everything in our power not to freak out last year, but we refrained in hopes at least some of the setup work would open all kinds of doors as Mike promised. So far all we get is fishing form sites in your backyard or far, far away from ours. So, I guess another one of my points is why keep asking for the SAME numbers from people all over the place? It gets old and I am sure fools people not in the know in thinking there is a good chance it will be awarded and at the price they gave! (which may or may not happen on occasion) And we were also told that if we worked with you, we would be sort of an "exclusive" partner in your area, so then why can I throw a bid in for an area across state? I should not even be a factor in it. As I see it, again, it’s wasting a lot of people's time for the same sites over and over again. This time of year, our time is precious, I am sure that in being in the business you are fully aware of that. We take a lot of care with our bids and IT TAKES TIME to consider it all the proper way, and many of us have staff who we have to pay to do it, it not just throwing our hat in the wind with fingers crossed so to speak!!!!

    We had one other fiasco happen last year with a company working with you, that wasted our time and caused a lot of turmoil because this "after the fact" dealing happened. I have been reading the posts and could not keep quiet anymore. I appreciate the concept of what you are saying your goals are, however, from the contractor's side -it’s not been a pleasure. I can't help but cringe when you keep chiming in and trying to ride in on a white horse. I hate to be so blunt, but in over twenty years of being in the business, your firm will stand out as one of the biggest frustrations to date, and least fruitless. As I said earlier, all of your ideals sound very romantic, but the ACTIONS I have seen to date are less than admirable or fair in my dealings. I am glad you are at least showing your face on here to give us the opportunity to provide feedback, I see you got plenty of it positive and not. Lets learn from this and not turn this into a boxing match if you agree what happened was not fair to us, the contractors.

    So I beg you, please be up front with us, I understand you are trying to build up your firm, I can appreciate that. But please don't use this forum as a sales pitch against the nationals and how your company is so much better, please try and see it from our standpoint and really make a difference. I can say with all honesty even if I did ever get a job awarded from you, it would not differ much from the "dreaded nationals". Just a horse of a different color. We have seen big and small come and go, I wish you all the best and truly hope you can make some changes for our favor, but please don't take advantage of us in the process or sell us a dream that really isn't so!!! Sorry so long but I had to spell it all out, from your reply you clearly are not seeing what a lot of us are feeling/experiencing. I would love to work with you and you did seem like nice people, but I NEED WORK, NOT EMPTY PROMISES!!!! I would never come on and bash someone for trying; however I see some discrepancies in your posts that I had to clarify. If the dealings did not come from your end, then you need to have a chat with your reps in how they are treating many of us, it’s a lot of double talk and frankly, unfair. Best of luck to you, I would say no hard feelings but I would be lying after what we were put through and how it was handled after the fact.
  14. Mick76

    Mick76 2000 Club Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 2,157


  15. Lily

    Lily Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    Thanks Mick, I bit my tongue for a couple of weeks but could not anymore. Hopefully it did not come across as campaign to attack but constructive input/inquiries for Rich (or any other maint. company reps for that matter) or food for thought to any newbies to biz.

    But after getting another bid email request for Sheetz, which by the way was really vague in how exactly it was to be priced in excel sheet, I had to say it. I could not help in the way it was presented to us that is was just to get numbers and nothing else in seeing how unclear it was. The specs really were not helping that were attached and on the subjective side IMHO. And just to clarify, my posts refer to Mike F., not Mike N. from the firm. However we had contact last year with all parties.
  16. clark lawn

    clark lawn PlowSite.com Addict
    from NE ohio
    Messages: 1,233

    To Rich: Have you guys been awarded ANY of the bids that have been sent out in the last year? i submitted bids for many places and have never seen the contractors change one time. i really find it hard to believe that all those places were able to keep the same contractor with however many people bidding on them.

    To Lily: i know exactly what you are saying about the bids. its like i said there is NO WAY i would bid that at a per push rate when it is left up to the 20something year old manger as to when the place will get plowed. i can see people losing their a$$ big time on that.
  17. Rich Arlington

    Rich Arlington Member
    Messages: 76

    Lily, you are absolutely right. next time a client wants to give us a bad contract I will certainly take it and make sure we award it to your company so this never happens again... however dont blame us when it goes bad for you....

    It is simple to complain... if you wish to not bid anymore I will understand and please send an email to mike@agmgus.com asking to be taken off the bidders list. That will fix all your complaints.
  18. Lily

    Lily Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    Again, missing my points

    Wow Rich,

    That was an answer that once again pointed the finger back to us. Yet says NOTHING about all of our concerns and or "complaints" with your company. Had I written what I really wanted to say last year I would be thrown off the site. To me it was a blow off reply, and you were the one who came on here saying you were open and trying to HELP us all in this market and on our side/trying to be different. I really don't see how your reply assures us to continue to keep entertaining your bids that you keep saying typically go nowhere because they are too high or whatever.

    Of course we do not want to enter into a bad contract, but I am sorry, DONT AWARD SOMETHING OUT LIKE YOU DID IF ITS NOT SOLID. You were the ones who put us into that situation, I didn't call you. I think that is the biggest problem we all have on here. If you are in the business as you say, you have to appreciate the predicament we were put in and what its like to be called up and think we landed a bunch of sites and then to get a form letter a couple of days later saying, ooops, someone goofed and should not have released the info internally. When we finally did speak to Mike, he told us about the terms changing and really was at a loss but assured us more work would come our way -just keep bidding, which we did, to no avail.

    To review, what you just did was ignore all of my points I took time to write out of what made me angry/frustrated, and after reading your posts on here, confused. I wont go back and caption that it was YOU who said when questioned- that the ONLY bid retraction was Wachovia. Two bids that came close that I thought I actually had were retracted after awarded, totalling about 10 sites that really put a wrench in my bidding. I wont even make it worse and pull out all of my notes I always take when a maintenance company CALLS US! Your rep was the one that called us on a Friday afternoon, and YOU set a crazy pace for submitting all of your prequalification requirements, etc. - I think we got the letter & it fell apart only a day or two later. So, what was all of the urgency if the contract was not solid, as when questioned we were told over and over it was a done deal??? I would have hoped you could have at least took this info to Mike F. and explained to him to not put firms into this kind of predicament. It just sounds like much of its to fill a void off the cuff. Whatever the case, it was one fiasco I will not forget anytime soon. Sorry, two, the second that I won't get into almost cost us our bidder walking out on us. At least I learned something about these cold calls and to be wary of promises that our gut tell us is fishy. And I also question if you are not just awarding bids our to just anyone, how were we approved so quick? Again, the timeframe thing raises a lot of questions on my end. It has been mentioned before, not sure it got anywhere. You have deadlines and a business to run, however, if I treated my subs like you have us, I would have none. Take it for whats its worth, if you want input, there it is. If you want to give me a "well, if you don't like it just don't deal with us" reply, then don't proclaim you are so open to our side of the business!!!!

    And all of us are just wondering about just how "exclusive" the bids are when such an influx is open over and over again for same sites. And bottom line, people are just wondering WHEN some kind of work will ever come their way if ever after doing so much homework for you guys. If you don't understand that frustration, that seems to be falling on deaf ears with you. And again, the putting the blame back on us is a bit insulting. When submitting a bid, it's your responsiblity in the end to represent us and try and get your subs the job, so this passing the blame onto us after something goes wrong to explain is kind of insulting to us on here who have been in the game, no matter how you spin it, a lot of empty promises are being sold. And when I can bid on a site all down the Eastern coast, how am I going to feel my numbers are not just to plug into a formula???You should know what is going to pass and what is not, so, I think people are wondering what exactly is going on when filling these numbers out in such a vague form over and over. And I think there are just as many who don't understand this and think they are going to get the job at what they are filling in. I honestly don't even know how you can compare apples to apples with the subjectiveness of it and volume of bids you seem to be sending out. Again, all very legit questions we have, I think after submitting numerous bids to you and then hearing nothing, I have a right to bring it to the table.

    You are quick to jump on and post when you can say you are so different, all things considered in our company's case, your reply is not that professional. If you can read what my experiences were that I took the time to convey and or get answers to and give me this kind of shrug off, it adds insult to injury. If you wanted to take my points and are so "open" to being on our side, you would have asked me my email so you can discuss how you can avoid and learn from it in the future, NOT SHUT ME OUT OF BIDDING! I guess that was my apology, a door shut in my face. Oh well, to me it was a door that led nowhere anyway. Good luck Rich, you are going to need it if this is how you conduct your business. :nono:
  19. Scottscape

    Scottscape Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    I have no problem working for nationals as long as they pay.. that is the main thing right guys?

    doing a bunch of leg work is better than doing the work and not getting paid..
  20. Lily

    Lily Junior Member
    Messages: 18

    I agree

    I have to agree, yet in my case in this instance, I would have to actually get a job first. My biggest problem is that I was awarded jobs and then had it yanked back soon after and the way the reps handled it all. And I just tried to point out some things I saw being said that I had to beg to differ with.

    So, point taken. And I must add that much of the problems people may be having with nationals is on the clerical end of things. I suspect much of it may have to do with something not in line, as most of us know, the clerical end of things has become just as important as the actual work in field! Please factor this in when quoting guys! Something does not jive and it throws a bill out or leaves it open for a stuggle. And I won't even mention weather reports not backing up whats on ground! We live in a elevation nightmare for that. Of course I am sure there are exceptions to that rule, but in most cases, when not paid, it was over some sort of paper issue, never in field. And yes, there are some fly by night companies that just didn't want to pay, but in the bigger national's defense, we have not had that much bad luck overall. If your rep does not want to help you out, by all means try and find someone in company who can work with you! It may take months, but don't give up if confident all of your ducks are in a row. If you goofed on paperwork or billed out line with terms, you might not get paid :(

    And if you have a good relationship with store, does not hurt to have manager call in as well, they do have to perform on their end so it matters most of the time!