The RFP process for a service contract at a large site can be complicated. Consider the following 4 steps to get a vendor who can provide a customized solution at the best possible price.
- Share your current staffing plan and statement of work with all possible vendors. Review employee sign-in sheets to verify how many workers actually work each shift. Many incumbents will attempt to inflate the size of the labor force. It is the responsibility of the client to verify and share this info with the bidders.
- Share current challenges and successes with bidders to provide more context as they work on their proposals. Some clients may want to get a fresh perspective from bidders, but this can be a source of misinformation as well. Similarly, it is easy for bidders to get arrogant, assuming their in-house expertise is enough for a strong proposal with minimal effort. However, you and your current vendor are the only ones who truly know the complexity of your facility. Sharing this data will allow the bidders to think through the issues and provide solutions that are unique to your facility.
- Find out if your potential vendors have any diversity designations. Working with certified minority-owned or women-owned janitorial contractors provides an opportunity to meet your 1st tier diversity goals and promotes flexibility and innovation.
- Make sure that the vendors who bid on your facility are CIMS-certified. In order to receive this certification, service providers must undergo a comprehensive assessment that validates they are able to deliver consistent, quality services designed to meet the customer's needs and expectations. In other words, it helps you to weed out the fraudulent companies that do not actually have the infrastructure to support your facility.
- Let the final bidders present their proposals. This will be a great learning experience AND you will get an opportunity to probe bidders based on key points in their proposals.
Remember that the goal is to find the best partner, not just the lowest bid. Many vendors can give you a low price without understanding the entire commitment. This may result in using less staff than necessary to keep the facility looking great. A smart vendor will be confident to have an honest conversation and offer a tailored solution for your consideration.
For more info on Servicon Systems, check out our services page.