You’re bidding for a job at a new educational facility. Here’s how to estimate cleaning services times and fees.
Across the country, many educational facilities are notoriously outdated or overcrowded. The result in some locations is that new facilities are sprouting up. These new locations represent excellent business opportunities. But with a brand new building, how do you estimate cleaning services times or how many people you’ll need to staff these facilities?
That’s a big question, especially since these new buildings (or renovated older buildings) may be vastly different. A new elementary school might double as a community center in the summer, or it might remain closed and empty until students return in the fall. A college building may house summer classes, college prep programs for high school students, research conferences, or, like the elementary school, may remain largely empty until the fall semester begins.
Likewise, since everything is new, you may not yet have to deal with stains, torn carpets, cracked tiles, or other wear and tear issues that slow your team down. Of course, the flip side of that is that it will be pretty obvious if you miss something when you clean! Still, what does it look like to estimate cleaning services costs in this type of facility?
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5 Tips to estimate cleaning services times and costs for new and renovated school facilities
1. Determine what you’re responsible for. Either as part of your walkthrough or in the RFP (request for proposal), be sure to get the details about what your responsibilities are. Looking again at some of the possible uses of a new building, your proposal might be for anything from weekday cleaning during the school year to working six or seven days each week throughout the entire year. Similarly, you may be expected to work night or early mornings. In addition to these factors, find out if you will need to use your own equipment and supplies, or if that is provided. This is all vital information you’ll need to provide an accurate estimate.
2. Find out about special requests or conditions. With new facilities, you may find that there are special requests that alter the way you estimate cleaning services. Unique flooring materials, antimicrobial surface coatings, specialty air filtration systems, coated glass, and other modern building and design choices could have a big impact on the equipment and supplies you use.
3. Remember the basics. Of course, some of the primary factors in any job estimate are the size of the space, the type of space, and the frequency of the cleaning. Educational facilities generally require more detailed work than, say, an office building. College students go to classes when they are sick. Younger students tend to pass colds and flu around like they are prizes to be shared. And high school students, well, they can be pretty darn messy. This means more time cleaning those high-touch surfaces, more time changing waste basket liners, more time refilling paper products, and so on.
4. Take advantage of technology. Whenever you estimate cleaning services costs, it’s always helpful to use the technology available to you, especially when you’re bidding on work at a new facility. Software like Janitorial Manager offers built-in bidding calculators, with ISSA time and task standards or customized templates. It also allows you to easily explore details like work loading and how a job might fit into your schedule.
5. Don’t undercut yourself. This isn’t so much a tip on estimating as it is on bidding. Once you have your estimate, which includes your expenses for supplies, labor, overhead, and any other costs, you have a good idea of how much it will cost you to do the job. It’s tempting to bid low just to get a job sometimes. That’s understandable when you’re trying to build your business or you just lost a big client or two. The problem is that when you undercut yourself and bid low, you’re taking a huge risk. A few unexpected expenses could easily put you in the position of losing money on a job if you aren’t careful. As disappointing as it may be to lose a bid, it’s even worse to win a bid that you don’t make any money on.
Like any bidding process, when you estimate cleaning services costs for a new educational facility, take your time. Get the information you need and develop a comprehensive and accurate bid. If you don’t win the contract, that just means there’s something better coming down the road for you.
Take advantage of the value Janitorial Manager can bring to your cleaning operation to streamline your processes like never before. Learn more today with a discovery call and make your cleaning operation more efficient and cost effective!