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Bummed lost a bid...

Discussion in 'Bidding & Estimating' started by kolkie05, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. kolkie05

    kolkie05 Senior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 114

    Did some bidding for a couple of post office locations and got my first letter saying they've awarded the bid to someone else. Seeing as I gave them a real good price it must be very competitve out there this year.

    Anyone win any contracts this year?
  2. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    The Post Office would take a bid from someone right now with out a plow if it's the lowest .I did one for years and some company is plowing it for 500.00 for the season. And they sub it out to someone besides.And I get mad because that's were my PO box and my feet get wet walking into the place.
  3. kolkie05

    kolkie05 Senior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 114


    I've posted this before but it seems this year you might as well work for free. I have 2 more bids sitting out there with them we'll see what happens with the rest.
  4. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Not me. I'm raising some of my prices and should be booked again for the season.
  5. kolkie05

    kolkie05 Senior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 114

    I must be doing something wrong can't grab a new account this year for the life of me. Every one I think I have is beaten by some guy doing it for nothing!
  6. mullis56

    mullis56 Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 824

    We've raised some of our prices and we've gotten 100% retention on existing customers and adding new ones!
  7. Wayne Volz

    Wayne Volz Senior Member
    Messages: 694

    Push the market

    I agree with Circle City. Push it until you find the top of the market. Gov't bids are not the place to try and find decent profit dollars. We got out of that circle a long time ago. Get out and find your niche.
  8. kolkie05

    kolkie05 Senior Member
    from Chicago
    Messages: 114


    I agree bud it just sucks when you put all the time and effort and come up on the losing end. The damn bid packet was enormous!
  9. BeSeenGraphics

    BeSeenGraphics Member
    Messages: 60

    When their parking lots look bad repeatedly, be sure to stop by and drop off a card. Especially when it;s like 11 AM and they aren't serviced yet. We see this often.
  10. wizardsr

    wizardsr PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,584

    Yes, it's tough this year. The economy is hurting, and guys are willing to work for cheap versus not having work. I can usually pick up a few with little to no effort just from referrals every year. This year I've pushed a little harder since I added yet another truck. I have gotten all of 1 referral, I bid it competitively, but the winning bid was less than 1/2 of mine. And this was supposedly a large company that got it, so you KNOW they're just going to sub it out to billy bob in his 70's chevy with no insurance... I just don't understand this work for free just to have the work concept, wouldn't it be easier to lose money sitting on the couch, drinking a beer in front of a nice warm fire all night? :dizzy:

    Good news is we have 100% retention from last year. payup
  11. Wayne Volz

    Wayne Volz Senior Member
    Messages: 694

    Couldn't agree more

    I will stay home and watch cartoons before I do it for Free! Too many contractors have no idea why they charge what they charge other than that's what they think the market will bear or that's what the competition is charging. As a matter of fact, from 1979 to 1987, I played that game myself. One day I woke up and found myself 89K in debt thinking I needed more work.

    I changed that day and have never looked back. When we finally started charging for the value of the service we were providing and stopped worrying what everyone else was doing we finally started doing less work and making more money. Funny how it worked out, but it wasn't funny living through it!

    As a final note, if we could count on our competition for pricing our jobs, why are the failure rates for the industry so high??????? Everyone owes it to their self and to their company to implement a cost recovery system.

    If anyone wants help, let me know.
  12. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,953

    I get upset for about 2 minutes when I find out I lost a large bid, then I get in gear, find more properties to bid on, and try and figure out why I didnt get the last one.
  13. Bajak

    Bajak Senior Member
    Messages: 999

    I lose more bids than I win by far. Sometimes I get a little upset but I always justify it by telling myself "the customer doesn't want or need my level of service." or "at least I'm not beating my head against the wall trying to make a living that cheap."

    It sucks being under bid but it is going to happen time and time again. Keep going and keep the pencil sharp. It will pay off in the long run.

    Good Luck.
  14. TonawandaNY

    TonawandaNY Senior Member
    Messages: 160

    I thank god because for my first year doing this I have already signed 12 accounts with an average cost of over 300.00 per driveway.
  15. Wayne Volz

    Wayne Volz Senior Member
    Messages: 694

    Consider some commercial work.

    A lot less stops and much more money involved. I am not downing driveways, but even a couple small commercial jobs would be better than all those driveways with less people to keep happy.
  16. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,935

    I agree with you on many levels Wayne, however, will disagree with the government contracts part of your prior post-that of course is from my own experience in the last few years.

    On another note, just got a postrcard from Hitch City-apparantly you're going to be doing some talking there later this month at their open houses. Looking forward to meeting you. :drinkup:
  17. TonawandaNY

    TonawandaNY Senior Member
    Messages: 160

    I hear ya. I bought my truck 2 years ago to tow a boat I never ended up buying. I have been unemployed from my profession since March. I had the truck before I thought about plowing. It is only a half ton, so I am limited to what type of work I can do.

    Eventualy, my hope is to get back into my profession, where I worked alot less and made alot more money! I had 3 weeks of vacation time a year, and my health benefits for my family were payed for.

    Dont get me wrong, being self employed has been GREAT:D. I just like the idea of 60,000/yr+ and not having to worry about where my next paycheck is coming from.
  18. TonawandaNY

    TonawandaNY Senior Member
    Messages: 160

    I have 3 interviews this week. If I get back to work I will be giving my contracts away.

    So pray for me that I can get back to work will ya:D
  19. Wayne Volz

    Wayne Volz Senior Member
    Messages: 694

    There's always room for one more.

    My comment may have been a bit strong on Gov.t contracts. In my experience, they always seem to have too much red-tape involved and in the end, the expected guidelines are generally not followed by the contractor getting the bid. Even though the price seems to go backwards.

    BTW - Be nice to meet you at Hitch City. Be sure to say hello.