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Who is making these decisions?

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by Longae29, Sep 29, 2009.

  1. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,954

    Got a call from a 5+ year customer the other day "i had to get another quote this year, we have a problem, they are a lot lower than you" this is a major player in town, he sent me the bid. Now lets do a comparison here. Keep in mind we've done this for over 5 years, the production numbers, and salt usage have all been tracked, I know where we are.........

    Plow 1-3 $215
    Salt $178
    Walks 1-3 $125

    Plow 1-3 $150
    Salt $315
    Walks 1-3 $35

    "they are a lot lower than you"
  2. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,696

    Yes they are.....let's hope their service is too.

    What a burn. :mad:
  3. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,467

  4. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Doesn't look much lower to me. Both are approx $500
  5. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    Did they loose their calculator or fail math, yours $ 518 vs. comp. $500, thats 4% difference, nothing, call them back explain & cut $ 18 from whereever as a good will gesture.
  6. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,954

    I was wondering if you guys would notice, did that get by TCLA? one lower number and one drastically lower number outweigh the bigger (more commonly occuring) number.

    Guess its a good way to get your bid a second look, and maybe slip through the cracks.

    As soon as he sent me their bid, I crunched the numbers, called him back and explained that we would be lower over the course of the season with more saltings than plowings
  7. plowtime1

    plowtime1 Senior Member
    Messages: 446

    Did you receive that lovely contract signed yet? Some people just dont think...sometimes you must lead them to the water. LOL
  8. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,468

    Plus he will salt when conditions call for plowing.
  9. big acres

    big acres Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    Yup... think that one got by TCLA. Let's forgive him since it doesn't happen often, lol.

    Managers mainly look at the "full-plow" number and the hourly rates to make decisions. You might think they are incompetent, but mainly they are as overworked as anyone. At least they gave you the scoop and a chance to explain it.

    I have lost so many bids to guys playing the game this way that I've started to play it myself... and yes, having that low plow number does get you a meeting.
  10. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,954

    My conversation with the property manager was late last week, havent seen my signed contract yet.
  11. terrapro

    terrapro PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,868

    Assuming you have an average of 15 plowable/shoveling events and say 20 saltings...

    Per season-
    You $8660
    Them $9075

    LOL :dizzy:
  12. Bruce'sEx

    Bruce'sEx Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    There are a couple company's around us that are the same, plow for nothing, but salt high. And Manager's see that and love it.

    Problem is the numbers are normally double the number of salting runs then plowing. So in the end it just cost more.

    These are also the guys that try to salt off 3 inches of snow, instead of plowing. I wonder if it cause they get so much work that to actually have to plow they just can't handle the work load.

    Hopefully, if you explained him the numbers and went over how it's similar, and or you may even be cheaper if there is alot of just salt runs. that the Property Manager comes around.

    Good luck
  13. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,468

    Didn't I say that earlier??
  14. big acres

    big acres Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    By gosh, I believe you did say something similar... most of our high-end salt customers know that rather than try to burn-off a couple of inches, we usually plow 3/4 of it at no charge.
  15. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,954

    Update: Lost this bid. They are "clearly going to save money with the other company" even though i sent them a nice spreadsheet showing how that wasnt the case. :realmad: :gunsfiring:
  16. KL&M Snow Div.

    KL&M Snow Div. PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,616

    People are so dumb. They just found a number they liked and locked on it. Sometimes I wish people wouldn't be so set on one certain thing like alot of people are.

    BRENTMAN Senior Member
    Messages: 222

    you should have just matched his numbers, but did $310 for salt, and said youve been loyal to them and they'd have chosen you....and their bill would have been higher than the previous years! haha

    ..assuming you'd salt like crazy just to be an A hole
  18. buckwheat_la

    buckwheat_la 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,254

    sorry to hear it man, that sucks, the good news for you, when you see these guys salting the hell out of 3-4inches of snow, you can go into the store, smile at the manager, and say "hey, your lot looks like sh!t" and walk back out.
  19. big acres

    big acres Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    I started a thread under commercial about having met with a big retail manager of several malls and where our bid came in and why we were not chosen, anyways...

    They have a spreadsheet and they plug in all the numbers, plow, salt, sidewalks, ice melt. The spreadsheet figures a certain number of 1-3", 3-6", saltings, etc... and spits out the ranking by estimated expense for the season under ea:Dch contractor and the percentage over/under the next guy.

    This might be a handy tool to have for ourselves to give out only when we know the prices are actually very close but the client can't see past the shell game.

    ...woudn't give it to everyone though, cause it might make US look higher priced.
  20. chitown sparky

    chitown sparky Senior Member
    Messages: 153

    I would have told them I would match it and now salt it more often than plow and you make more money and they are happy to even though it would have been cheaper your way