As you're building a budget, you may have unknown costs or there may be certain costs where you need more clarity. Bid requests are a great way to collect this information from vendors, suppliers, or subcontractors.
Create Bid Request
To create a new bid request, select a job, click “+ New Document” in the top right of the page, and select the Bid Request template you would like to use.
Note: If you prefer a different term than "Bid Request," you can make this change within your organization settings.
Choose Vendor and Select Items
Select the vendor for your bid request. Choosing a vendor will auto-copy the primary contact's details into the Bid Request but this can be modified later if needed. Once the vendor is selected, you will see a list of items from your budget.
Note: If you do not see the vendor, make sure they've been added to your vendor directory. Select which budget items you'd like to include on the bid request. If you do not select a budget item, it will be hidden from the vendor. This allows you to ask vendors for bids on a subsection of your project, if not the whole. Click Create at the bottom of the page to generate a draft of your bid request.
If you would like to edit this document, click on the “Edit Items” tab at the top of the screen. The changes you make are specific to the document and will not be applied elsewhere. For example, if you click on a line item and adjust the description, this will only impact the document that you're editing - it will not be copied back to the budget. This allows you to tailor your documents to specific vendors.
If you'd like to write out a longer explanation about the scope of work, or maybe clarify the details of individual line items, simply click on those sections and make your desired changes. Note: prices are blank on bid requests because it's assumed the vendor will provide this information to you. We leave you the ability to enter the amounts as well in case you want to log bids that have been made offline or bids you've been provided in the past.
If you need to add or remove items to your bid request, you can click the “+ Add or remove items” button and the full list of items from your budget will pop up. From there you can check or uncheck any items you need.
If you have any photos, videos, or files you would like to add to your bid request, you can click to add them from your device of choice or drag and drop them directly into the uploader.
Sending and Receiving Bid Request
You will now see a preview of your bid request. From here you have a variety of options.
Send to Vendor
When you are ready to send the bid request to your vendor, click the “Send to Vendor” link on the right side of the screen (Note, you also have the option to “Require Vendor Signature” to sign off on their pricing). This will move your bid request to “Pending” status and email your vendor a link they can use to input all their costs and send back to you. When the vendor fills out the information and clicks “Submit Bid”, it will automatically populate back into the Bid Requests field of your budget and change the status to “Received”
Mark as Pending
If you do not have an email address or you’d prefer to just hand it off to your vendor to review and get back to you at a later point, you have the option to select “Mark as Pending”. This is a quick way to notate in the system that you have sent out a bid request to a specific vendor for specific work.
Mark as Submitted
Many times your vendor will just want to talk through some of the prices while you’re at the jobsite with them or they might find it easier to just call and talk through the prices. If this is the case, you can go into the bid request and manually enter all their prices yourself. When you have finished updating the costs from your vendor, click “Mark as Submitted” to finalize the bid request and mark it as “Received”. Note, you'll be asked to provide a reason - this can be a short comment about how the bid was received - i.e. approved via email)
If you want to generate a PDF of your bid request, that you can print off or save to your files you can select the “Generate PDF” link.
Clone Bid Request
The “Clone Bid Request” option is helpful for quickly soliciting multiple bids for the same scope of work. This will be an exact clone, except any files previously attached will need to be re-added.
Bid Request Statuses
There are three different statuses to help you quickly see where you stand with each request.
When a bid request is created, it will start in Draft status. While in “Draft” status, you can make all the edits you need to the document to customize it for your recipient.
Pending status indicates your scope of work has been sent out for bid but has not been received. Your bid request will be marked as Pending when you “Send to Vendor” or manually “Mark as Pending”. From here, you will no longer be able to edit the bid request, aside from updating the costs if you receive them from the vendor outside of JobTread.
When a bid request is received, it doesn't necessarily award work to this contractor, as you may receive several bids. Collecting bids is information gathering. When you have the necessary information and decide which bid to go with, update the cost of the line items they will be working on to accurately reflect the agreed upon price.
The settings button at the top right of the screen allows you to set the due date for the bid request and customize the display options to choose what the vendor sees when reviewing the document.
Viewing Bid Requests in the Budget
From the budget tab, you have a standard view called “Bid Requests” that will allow you to review all your bid requests and the status of each. You will now have a better idea of the actual costs for your project that you can use to select your vendors and finalize the pricing of the estimate / proposal for your customer..
Note: you may also create custom saved views to see your bid requests and choose the other data you want to see with them. to help finalize the estimate for your customer.