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Creating a Unique Client Experience

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Anyone who has ever worked in construction knows how important a presentation is to the bidding process. Not only does a proposal determine who gets the contract for a project, but it’s also used throughout the construction process as a reference tool, safety guide, contact sheet, and rule book.1

Prior to the onset of the pandemic, contractors would visit owners’ offices and give a physical presentation about why they should be chosen to be the contractor for a project. They would create a document to submit to a potential customer detailing the estimate cost, scope, and work schedule of a bidding project to win the contract against competing developers. Oftentimes, these would be presented to potential clients’ offices in-person, but due to the limitations set in place from COVID-19, this has become more of a difficult task for construction companies.

Megan Tatsch, Marketing Manager for Harvey Builders, says the company has switched to using a virtual platform for bid proposals.

“Surprisingly, we’ve had a few in-person presentations,” says Tatsch. “As soon as COVID started, we had to shift our strategy from in-person to virtual, so we played around with many different presentation techniques and virtual conferencing platforms. If we do present in person, we are still required to take a temperature check in the lobby of the building we are visiting.”

According to Tatsch, bids are being accepted virtually via email or in-person hard copies. Tatsch says that each presentation differs and depends on the number of team members and the type of platform, so Harvey Builders usually does a test run the day before a deadline to make sure everything is set up properly.

“It makes our job a little easier to do things virtually, because it gives us time to work up until the very last minute before the bid needs to be sent,” continues Tatsch. “When preparing hard copies to be delivered, we have to establish a cut-off time to print the material and drive it to its destination, which is usually a minimum of an hour prior to the bid deadline. But one disadvantage of virtual submissions is relying on technology!”

When preparing a construction bid, it’s important to create a unique client experience in order to stand out from the rest of the competition. Some best practices include using simplified terms, adding appendices, and making templates easily available.2 If you’re not sure what to include in a bid, there are templates on the Internet that contractors can download for free and utilize if they are getting ready for a presentation.

According to Dodge Data & Analytics, twenty-three percent of civil contractors have already adopted civil technology to support social distancing for bids and remote work, whereas only four percent of commercial contractors have made these investments.3 COVID-19 has certainly affected industries across the board. As construction companies continue to bid projects to potential clients, whether in-person or virtual, it’s unsure if the pandemic will affect future bid presentations. As vaccines become more available and companies continue to follow safety precautions, we’ll just have to wait to find out how these presentations will continue in the future.

References:

  1. Weaver, Brian. Big Rentz. Easy to Use Construction Bid Templates. May 24, 2019. https://www.bigrentz.com/blog/construction-bid-template
  2. Weaver, Brian. Big Rentz. Easy to Use Construction Bid Templates. May 24, 2019. https://www.bigrentz.com/blog/construction-bid-template
  3. Laquidara-Carr, Donna. Construction Business Owner. Insights from Dodge Data & Analytics on the Impact of Coronavirus Currently & What’s Expected in the Future. October 24, 2020. https://www.constructionbusinessowner.com/popular-now/covid-19-construction-ongoing-effects-pandemic-business

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