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So, of course, like most reputable subs, you are inundated with bid requests! How do you filter these and pick which ones are worth your time and effort?
Here's what you should keep in mind before you hit that "submit" button:
Evaluate the General Contractor
Alright, first things first. Who's the big cheese behind the project? Have you worked with them before? Do they pay well and on time? Do they have access to a large universe of projects and systems you focus on (i.e. hospital networks or retail / hotel networks or office renos)? What is their reputation in the industry? Knowing the GC's track record can give you a very good idea of what to expect.
But – most importantly, what is your Return on Investment with this GC? Do you have a good relationship with them where you know they will award you the work? Otherwise, you can find yourself spinning your wheels and putting in a lot of time, effort and money with a GC and seeing measly, if any, win rates.
A strategic subcontractor will keep a “GC Scorecard” that measures and weighs all of these factors.
Can you handle the project type? The industry? It determines whether or not you have the skills, knowledge, and experience necessary to complete the project successfully. Are there many nuances / complications in the project that might complicate the installation or add more time? Time is money and labor is expensive (you don’t need us to tell you that)! Consider your teams’ skills and abilities, and whether you're willing to take on something new or stick to what you know.
Suitability of Project Size
Size matters, folks! Is the project too big (or sometimes even too small) for your company's capacity and resources? You don't want to take on a project that you can't handle – we’ve got numerous stories of situations like that which only end in one way – in a big whammy to your bottom line! Figure out if the project size fits your company's capacity and resources.
Resource Availability / Scheduling
You don’t need us to tell you this! Study carefully project timelines and your team availability! Of course, time lines often get pushed back in our industry but the more you can to ensure you have assigned the correct resources on the calendar, the less unexpected problems you will experience. No one wants to be caught by surprise when you have a labor shortage and 4 huge projects all starting at the same time! Being short on resources just leads to costly delays and mistakes.
Last but not least, the big kahuna - money, moolah, cha-ching! After all, your goal is to make money. Does the project offer a reasonable profit margin? Have you factored in everything such as labor delays, material delays, extra shipping costs (if relevant)? Carefully evaluate the numbers and make sure they add up to your satisfaction - and always keep some margin - before submitting your bid.
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