A key success factor at the beginning of any construction project, managing bids can be a rigorous and frustrating process, challenging even the most organized construction owner. Regardless of the scale of the project, finding the right bidders plays an important part in determining the project’s overall health and lifecycle. If there is an oversight, or incorrect information is distributed during the bidding process, the wrong bidder can be hired for the job, causing stress, and costing time and money.
With such high stakes, periodically reevaluating your bid management process and technology is vital. As complicated as bidding and RFQ management can be, the best strategy for managing your bidders more effectively can be summarized quite simply: Streamline your processes and software.
A streamlined bidding process starts with efficient and user-friendly software. As IoT is becoming a reality in almost all industries, it's essential to implement project management software that's forward-thinking.
"Software innovation, like almost every other kind of innovation, requires the ability to collaborate and share ideas with other people, and to sit down and talk with customers and get their feedback and understand their needs." – Bill Gates
Project management software is essential for various types of work, but getting off to a good start with a strong bidding process can make all of the difference in your job’s overall success. Streamlined, centralized software, like VPO, makes the bidding process more secure and trackable, and houses all of the important information regarding your construction project in one place.
To illustrate the advantages of using a centralized construction project management software, we’ve compiled a list of the top five ways that an all-in-one, streamlined solution can help you manage your bids and select the right bidder for the job, every time:
1. Really know who your bidders are
Are you tired of triple-checking your email messages to see if a potential bidder has the right credentials or holds the necessary criteria to be eligible for the job at hand? A centralized database is critical in making sure that you never move in reverse during the bidding process. With software such as VPO that acts as a central database, you can house your bidders' geographical information, credentials, and contact information under one "roof." Eliminating the need to store this critical information on your own or rely on your email provider’s dashboard can ease the stress of finding the right person or company for the job.
Additionally, being able to visually compare your project’s bidders can speed up the overall process. By getting a quick, easy-to-read summary of the companies you’ll potentially be working with, you get to keep the ball rolling and move on to the next project.
2. Single repository of contacts
When inviting companies to bid on your project, you know that if you invite ten, you might only get one response. With the ratio of invitations to responses being low, having a single repository of valid contacts can make or break the entire process.
If your contacts are in a single location, it is much easier to filter through potential bidders and sift through their credentials and experience specific to your current project. It also gives you the ability to be precise and controlled when guaranteeing that you’re following important equal opportunity clauses.
3. Email integration
When using a native email platform as your means for communication with your potential bidders, you don’t have many options for filing your correspondences. Sure, you can create labels and folders, but that tactic is completely reliant on the variable that you will be able to catch everything coming and going to and from your inbox. Creating an audit or tracking trail of your communications is nearly impossible on your own when you have dozens of outgoing invitations and a ton of incoming questions, requests, and quotes.
By using a software system that allows you to get real-time updates when a bidder accepts or declines your invitation to bid, you can get to your bottom line faster. When trying to manage email messages yourself, RFIs, questions, and important clarifications can go unanswered--creating delays in the starting date of your project.
VPO even offers a unique service of managing the bidding communication process for you, allowing you to focus on other important work. As your bidders prepare their documents, they can use your secure environment with role-based security to upload their bids prompting automatic e-mail notifications to be sent to the appropriate people.
By managing these communications electronically, you have an audit trail on any changes made to your documents and bidding contacts.
4. Important documentation is easily accessible
By moving your processes and documentation to a streamlined software, you can make the entire bidding process easier for both you and your bidders by having one secure and accessible location for important documentation.
When construction owners are sending and receiving important documentation such as project drawings, it can get confusing and tiresome. Project drawings are usually large in file size and cannot be distributed through traditional email, so owners find themselves resorting to time- and resource-consuming postal mail, and file-sharing through untraceable links.
VPO Construction Project Management Software gives you the ability to store important project documentation and drawings in a secure cloud-based environment, Office 365. This gives both the owners and bidders instant out-of-the-box access to documentation on multiple devices any
With unique folder links secured in SharePoint, your bidders can both download your documentation and upload their paperwork to you, leaving a trackable trail following any updates that are made.
5. Helpful Q&A Section
How many times have you received the same question from multiple bidders? By upgrading your project management software, you’ll have the ability to provide quick answers to bidding questions so you can get back to the task at hand instead of fielding numerous inquiries. Additionally, by providing answers to commonly asked questions, you can both narrow down your search and preemptively give bidders a better understanding of your project so they can determine if it's the right fit for them to make a bid.
While the bidding process is notoriously time-consuming and stressful, there is a real solution. By streamlining your process using smarter software, you can set up your team with a higher success rate from the start. VPO Construction Project Management Software is an all-in-one package, giving you the tools you need to be organized in your bidding process while also giving you a platform to perfect your project tasks and strategy.
To learn more about how VPO Construction Project Management Software can work for your team in making your bidding process run smoothly, schedule a demo today.