A bid sheet is a document that is included along with the proposal to detail the estimated price and proposed schedule of a construction project. Bid sheets are commonly provided by solicitors; however, there are instances where the companies have to prepare the contractor bid sheet themselves.
For general contractors, submitting an accurate and detailed bid sheet along with a competitive proposal is crucial to getting awarded the project, but writing proposals from scratch can be a huge drain on resources.
To save time and streamline the proposal process, a guide to completing a construction bid sheet and a template is essential. Another solution would be to leverage AI estimating software to speed up the takeoff process. This option would provide a custom export to the template of your choosing and result in a more accurate cost estimate to detail in your bid sheet.
In this article, you'll find an outline of the best practices for completing a competitive construction bid sheet. You'll also get access to a roundup of various free construction bid sheets, bid forms, and proposal templates.
Best Practices For Completing the Contractor Bid Sheet and Proposal
A contractor bid sheet determines the cost estimates for a construction project, enabling project managers, and clients to accurately budget. To create a complete construction bid sheet and competitive proposal, here are some of the best practices to follow.
1. Understand the Bid Process
Before filling out the construction bid sheet and completing the proposal, all team members must be familiar with the bidding process.
2. Qualify the Construction Project
When preparing and submitting a construction proposal, there is no guarantee that the firm will get awarded the work. Sometimes, companies might even spend time preparing proposals for projects that are not a good fit for their firm or that are outside their expertise. To ensure a firm is not spending valuable time and money, they must implement the following:
Review the project documents thoroughly.
Qualify the potential client.
Make sure that the project is a great fit for the growth of their firm.
3. Use an AI Estimating Software
Doing takeoffs and cost estimations is one of the most time-consuming and costly stages of preparing the construction bid sheet and proposal. Using an AI estimating software like Togal.AI enables you to complete takeoffs in seconds instead of weeks with up to 97% accuracy.
With its deep-learning model, the technology also gets smarter and faster with both time and usage. For example, if your estimator classifies a symbol as "toilet", the technology learns and classifies all similar symbols in the future as "toilet."
Book a free demo to learn more about how Togal.AI can help streamline the preparation of your construction bid sheet and proposal.
4. Use Standardized Terms
For large, multi-part projects, it's easy to get lost in the details and create a confusing bid proposal. This can lead to your construction firm losing a contract to competitors whose proposal is easier to understand. To avoid this, aim to use simple language and standard industry terms.
5. Use the Template Provided By the Client
Most clients include a construction bid sheet and proposal template in the project's documentation. Leverage this template to ensure you cover all of the necessary sections. Doing so not only makes it easier for the client's personnel to review several proposals but also gives the impression that you're willing to adapt your process to fit the client's needs.
6. Create a Template
If the clients didn't provide a template, we've outlined free templates below that you can use as a reference to ensure all critical sections like scope and cost estimates are included.
7. Make the Template Available
To improve communication and efficiency during the preparation process, make the contractor bid sheet template accessible to all relevant team members and subcontractors. Doing so enables them to modify it in real-time to fit the client's needs.
8. Be Specific
Communicate the exact intended scope of work within your bid sheet and proposal. This helps clients communicate their needs in advance if it differs from the scope of work that you're proposing. It also reduces the likelihood of unreasonable client expectations that may result in disputes in the future.
9. Set a Reasonable Time Estimate
Setting unrealistic time estimates can raise skepticism in the client's minds, set up the wrong expectations, and put you and your firm in a vulnerable place during unexpected situations.
Your bid sheet and proposal should include a realistic time estimate that will allow your company to adapt during unexpected events. Doing this can also position your construction firm as both reasonable and reliable.
10. Share About Your Business
Communicate your expertise and describe the projects you specialize to the solicitor. Doing so can help you and the solicitor decide if your construction firm is a fit for the project.
Different Contractor Bid Sheets and Proposal Templates
BigRentz is a California-based company that operates as an online marketplace for heavy equipment rentals.
Their construction bid template is both customizable and available in Google Docs and MS Word. The template includes basic information for both parties, project scope, existing conditions, project costs, terms of payment, relevant documentation, work schedule, and signatures.
Smartsheet is a platform that enables businesses to collaborate and manage work across multiple projects.
Their construction bid template outlines all key details of the project including basic information, the scope of work, materials, and labor. Their page also includes other relevant construction bid templates and forms such as:
Construction Bid Tabulation Template
Abstracts of Bid Template
Subcontractor Bid Proposal Template
Bid Package Template
Invitation To Bid Template
Bid Comparison Template
Depending on the template, the documents can be downloaded in either Excel, MS Word, and PDF format.
TemplateRoller is a library of up-to-date legal forms and templates. They feature an extensive inventory of forms, and templates in fields like business, military, real estate, tax, and more.
Their contractor bid sheet template includes sections like owner information, contractor information, the scope of work, materials and services that are not included, agreement terms, and acceptance of the proposal.
There is an option to download the contractor bid sheet template as a PDF or to fill the document online.
Examples offers useful tools and resources from real individuals going about their business and daily life. Their database includes fields such as business, design, and marketing.
The contractor bid forms by Examples can be used by general contractors who want to respond to a bid invitation, or by owners who want to provide a standard form for all participants. They have a bid form for public work, a general contractor bid form, and a combined contractor bid proposal form.
The contractor bid sheets by Examples include a contractor bid sheet template, commercial construction bid template, and residential construction bid template. Depending on the provided template, the documents can be accessed with the formatting of MS Word, MS Excel, Google Docs, and Google Sheets.
Because the costs involved during the preparation of the bid sheet and proposal are part of the overall business costs, it's important to streamline the process for all team members.
Streamlining the process can include using an effective and reliable template to ensure all key details are included. You can also leverage technology to speed up the time-consuming process of cost estimation.
Doing so can result in a detailed bid sheet and competitive proposal that can:
Increase the chances of your firm getting awarded the project.
Reduce the costs of extra overhead, and increase the profitability of the project.
Provide a clearer and more accurate scope that results in better communication and faster project completion.
Result in faster and more accurate takeoffs that reduce risks of cost overruns.
Make the preconstruction process faster and get awarded more work by using the bid sheets and proposal templates we’ve provided above and by trying out Togal.AI.