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09/30/2019 9:33 AM | CAI Rocky Mountain Chapter (Administrator)

By Tony Diaz III, CMCA, AMS, Worth Ross Management Co., Inc. AAMC

As onsite managers we are sometimes asked to help prepare an RFP and in selecting a contractor. While there are many approaches to doing this, I have found the following works best for me.  Using this method, allowed our building to complete 3 different yet major projects totaling almost $2.8 million in just 18 months. 


  • Step One – Build an RFP:  Depending on the type and size of the project, we managers might not be the best person to build the RFP. In all three of our recent projects, I suggested to the BOD to hire a third party who is better qualified to build the RFP. They agreed and the RFP was developed after several onsite visits and with significant input from the property manager. 


  • Step Two – Identify Potential Contractors:  Once the RFP meets the recommendations of the third-party expert and those of the onsite manger, you can work to put together a list of potential contractors. The RFP should be sent to them at the same time by the RPF provider.   


  • Step Three – Plan a Contractor Meeting:  While not required, I strongly recommend a mandatory meeting be called for all contractors who have an interest in providing a bid. This meeting should be 7 to 10 days after the RFP was sent out. This allows time for the contractors to review the RFP and identify any concerns or questions they may have.  


  • Step Four – Contractor Meeting:  Every contractor that wishes to provide a bit must attend this meeting. After all the contractors have arrived and introductions have concluded, the RFP provider should review the entire RFP with questions allowed at the conclusion of the presentation. This ensures the RFP is covered as presented prior to making possible changes.  


  • Step Five – Contractor Meeting Walk Through:  After the Q&A, all potential contractors should walk the property to review the items which need to be addressed according to the RFP. If subsequent visits are needed, they should work directly with the onsite manager to gain access to the building. 


  • Step Six – Contractor Meeting Conclusion:  To conclude the meeting, it is important the certain items are covered one last time. Those could include the due date for the bid. Where the bid should be sent. Explain that any questions which may arise after they depart the site should be sent to the RFP provider so they can respond and copy all other vendors. This ensures everyone gets the same information. 


  • Step Seven – Review of Bids:  The provider of the RFP should receive and review all the bids. They should give the onsite manager a comparison of the various bids. They should also provide a recommendation with their justification on the selected contractor. 


  • Step Eight – Selection of a Contractor:  The manager can now review the information provided. Compare it to the original RFP and the provider’s recommendation.  Once the manager feels comfortable with 1 to 3 potential contractors, they can present the information to the BOD for a final decision.  

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