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How to Increase Your Margins in 2020 by Tracking Your Bids

Erick Vargas

Bid Tracking in the construction industry is challenging, especially for new contractors. However, it’s also one of the important tasks they have to do. Many of the people we talk to are still tracking bids traditionally -- using spreadsheets and multiple folders. This inefficient process doesn’t only lend itself to inaccuracies but also makes sharing and collaborating difficult.

The first step in tracking your bids is to streamline the whole process. Manually updating your spreadsheets is a sure way to forget and miss things. Today’s minimum standard in bid tracking involves putting information in cloud storage, where it’s easy to access and update.

So let’s get to how you should track your bids.

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1. Set Goals

You need to set your goals. Many contractors miss this key part. Goal-setting is one of the initial tasks for anyone who’s doing anything with a purpose. Bidders have goals. Your goal maybe to offer the lowest bid or the most reasonable bid. Maybe you want to gain the most profit. Or perhaps you want to surpass your bid volume last year. Your Goal shapes much of your bidding strategy.

2. Keep Track of All Bids

Keep track of all the bids your company has made. Both new and old contractors have unique problems when it comes to tracking all bids they have made. Newcomers usually miss on key aspects and details. Big contractors, on the other hand, have bid volumes too large for manual tracking. In any case, an efficient bid tracking system should be utilized.

3. Know What to Track

There’s a huge amount of information that comes with every bidding documentation. Even Creating a bid proposal report on a spreadsheet can be daunting, especially if you have more than fifty or even a hundred or so bids over a couple of months. Basically, you need a report that includes the project name, bid status contract type, base bid, and date. You may also need to include the names of the account manager and the estimator.

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 4. Monitor Outcomes

Whether you’re sending one or multiple bids at a time, you have to know the results or the feedback on your proposals. This way, you can identify the bids you’re winning as well as the ones you’re losing. This allows you to study your bidding process and identify the mistakes or circumstances that cost you that project. Thus, you become a better bidder in the future. Moreover, tracking outcomes also allows you to see your bid-hit ratio.

5. Identify the right people to work on specific bids.

One of the benefits of using a reliable bid tracking system is tracking contributions made by different people, such as estimators, contractors, or staff members. This way, you can assign the right people on particular bids so that you get the most out of their experience and skill.  

6. Monitor project details.

Some of the important details you need to keep track of are equipment and supplies, logistical information, and budget. Tracking these details helps you figure out what types of projects you’re mostly winning. In addition, you should also track locations where you’re winning more bids to know where to focus your resources.

Tracking your success isn’t so difficult with all the advanced bid tracking systems available. Tracking your bids doesn’t just involve monitoring the project you’re bidding on but also includes reading responses you’re receiving. Feedback helps you improve your approach in making proposals. As your bidding technique evolves, you will notice your number of clients growing. Learning begets success.

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Again, it’s worth noting that tracking multiple proposals at once is ridiculously difficult without the aid of an automated system or software. The right bid management software makes tracking all your bids efficient.

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