A reader writes: “What do you consider to be the main factors to consider in bidding a contract. I just go with a dollar per square foot rate regardless of size or type. Does this approach make sense?”

Let me stress that there is no one size fits all approach to bidding accounts since there are a myriad number of different accounts to be bid with varying needs and expectations. You certainly would not bid a day care center (with aseptic level cleaning) the same as an auto dealership garage area with heavy degreasing required. Following are some key factors to consider in bidding any account:

  1. The type of the building/account and its overall use. Of course, you may have an account with a mix of office space, storage, meeting rooms, day care, garage parking, fitness center and other areas so you may have to break out the opportunity by type to be more accurate.
  2. Cleaning frequency is very important in that less than five day per week service can result in slower per visit times due to the increased amount of trash, soiling, etc.
  3. The size of the account/area is important in that the rule of thumb is that the larger the account (with other factors the same), the more efficiently it can be cleaned. A graphic example is that a 200,000 square foot account on a bus line is much more efficient that twenty different sites spread over several square miles even though the total may be the same.
  4. Floor surface (carpet, hard floor requiring finish/buffing, other surfaces) can have a radical impact on productivity. The rule of thumb is that in most cases carpet is faster and easier to maintain than VCT (requiring scrubbing, recoating, buffing, etc.) since it tends to hide visible soils in the fibers. An exception may be high traffic, food courts or other areas that must be serviced often due to spills and stains.

We will continue this discussion in a future article.

Remember that the only thing worse than not getting a bid is getting one for the wrong price and ultimately failing.

Your comments and feedback are always appreciated. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.