West Chicago, IL – This month’s Business of the Business from Tornado Industries, a manufacturer of professional cleaning equipment, provides a quick refresher on janitorial bidding strategies.
But before we begin, a disclaimer: There is no one right way to bid. The best bid is the one that wins you the account and is profitable enough to maintain it.
With that out of the way, the following are three key bidding strategies:
Price per square foot: This is most common and effective when bidding on larger facilities. However, contractors must be aware of certain issues. For instance, the bid should not be on gross square footage of the facility but on the cleanable or rentable (or rented) square footage. That will be more accurate. Also, is the bid to be a monthly charge per square foot or an annual charge per square foot? A monthly calculation is typically based on 10 to 14 cents per square foot while an annual charge would be higher, $1 or more per square foot.*
Hourly bidding: For smaller locations, experienced cleaning contractors often bid based on how long they believe it should take to clean a facility. They may use production rates for individual cleaning tasks (e.g., how long does it take to clean one toilet times the number of toilets in the building) or overall production rates, such as how many square feet one person should be able to clean in an hour. These times are then multiplied by your company’s hourly rate for cleaning.
Workloading: In some ways, workloading combines both of these methods but takes the process a step further. Used most frequently for bidding on larger locations, workloading involves determining the “scope of work:” what has to be cleaned daily, detail work (e.g., high and low dusting), and project work such as floor refinishing, etc. Annual time and frequencies are assigned to each task and labor are determined by the wage rate paid. Added to this are expenses such as employment taxes, insurance, benefits, supplies, equipment, supervision, and of course your profits.
*Square foot charges vary throughout the country
The Business of the Business Advisory is designed to help building service contractors operate their businesses more efficiently and profitably.