The Pre-Bid Meeting

Henry Staggs, RRO

July 23rd, 2020

Every specification we put out instructs the bidder to make sure they have adequately inspected the site and the roof. This meeting is that opportunity, and more. We absolutely want the bidders to feel satisfied that they have had completed all the due diligence they need to write a reasonable bid. 

Why have the meeting?

Some bidders I have invited in the past ask, "Can't we just go out on our own, do we have to attend the pre-bid meeting." The answer is always, yes; you do have to attend the pre-bid meeting. Suppose you want to be part of the bidding process anyways. It's not still reasonable or possible to have contractors coming and going at any time, climbing on the roof, walking around the property, etc. Which is why we (and every other consultant and architect on the planet) will schedule and conduct a pre-bid meeting. Giving the bidders the change to look around and ask questions about the specifications, the site, the owner's intentions, and whatever other concerns the bidders have. 

Who needs to be there?

Most of the time, a company will send out there salesperson or estimator. The owners are encouraged to attend a pre-bid meeting to see the bidders face to face and start to get some idea which one they might want to award the job. This meeting is a "sales meeting," and the person the contractor sends out will be a reflection on how serious they take the project. We always advise any contractor that they send out someone with a higher ranking to attend these meetings, just in case the owner is there, and they want to make a good impression. 

When and where? 

PRC usually schedules the meeting for a time that is convenient for the owner. The place is always the site where the work will be done. After one of the reasons for this meeting is to give the bidders their chance to inspect the site and the roof. Which they are required to do, not suggested, not optional, but needed to do. I said this earlier, and I will repeat it, we WANT bidder to feel satisfied that they have done all the due diligence work they need to do. 

What does the bidder need to bring? 

The bidder only needs to bring along their copy of the "Invitation to bid" and construction documents and the right attitude. Be ready to walk around, take notes and photos and measurements if they feel the need.  This meeting is also an opportunity for bidders to demonstrate their professionalism in the owner's presence. 

Summary 

  • The meeting is mandatory and scheduled by PRC for a time that is convenient for the owner.
  • Bidders are encouraged to send their A team.
  • Bidders will use this meeting to do their due diligence work before committing to a bidding number.
  • Bidders should be ready to impress the owner with their professionalism. 

Bidders and Owners, this meeting is an important meeting that tends to be neglected. Sure, these meetings can be a bit boring, and they do take time out of the day. If we want the project to go well, we need to start well.