Finding open bids for cleaning contracts doesn’t need to be complicated. You just need to know where to look.
A critical part of running a cleaning business is finding open bids for cleaning contracts. You can’t very well run a business if you don’t have customers. It’s always nice when these come to you from references or word-of-mouth, but unless you have a large, influential network, you’ll still need to do a bit of searching on your own.
Even if you don’t currently need to find open bids for cleaning contracts now, it’s good to know where to look. You may decide you want to expand your business, or you may just want to see what’s out there. You never know when that lucrative, long-term contract will appear in your future.
However, you also don’t want to spend countless hours searching through websites and listings without some guarantee of a reward. While we can’t promise any rewards, we do have a few ways to make the process easier and less time-consuming.
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How to successfully search for open bids for cleaning contracts
Search Engines: Let’s start with an easy place to look for open bids for cleaning contracts: Google. When we were putting this list together, we did a few Google searches. “Commercial cleaning bids Baltimore” gave us seven viable results, ranging from Baltimore City Public Schools to the University of Maryland in Baltimore County to the nearby city of Rockville. “Open cleaning contracts Sacramento” only resulted in two possibilities.
Clearly, results will vary, but it only takes a couple of minutes. Type in your search term plus your city or location. Just don’t spend a lot of time looking beyond the first few pages. It gets a bit messy at that point.
Your local government site: Cities and counties everywhere will often list open bids for cleaning contracts and other services. For example, the town of Natick, Massachusetts, has a page on their website where you can search for bids and RFPs by category. Alameda County, California, has a very similar page.
Some locations, such as the city of Sacramento, California, require you to register as a vendor before you can submit a proposal. Still, they have an easily searchable third-party site that lists bid opportunities. For instance, when we wrote this, they had open bids for floor cleaning services at the public library and citywide janitorial services.
Other locations, like Tampa, Florida, take a slightly different approach. They invite potential vendors to sign up for automatic notification emails whenever there are upcoming bids that meet your business specifications. The point here is that all of these were easy to find. Go to the website of your local town, city, or county, and look for their purchasing department. From there, it should be relatively simple to find open bids for cleaning contracts.
Higher education facilities: Many universities will operate similarly to local governments. The University of Minnesota has its own purchasing department where you can register as a supplier and look through open bids. The University of Rhode Island offers a similar process, but you need to go through the State of Rhode Island’s Division of Purchases to view and make bids.
Government contracts: U.S. government contracts do require you to jump through quite a few hoops. However, these contracts can be long-term and lucrative. And because there is a lengthy process to winning open bids for cleaning contracts with government agencies, you may have less competition to contend with. You can read more about obtaining your credentials in Government Cleaning Contracts: The Best Way to Win the Bid.
Once you’re set up, you can search for open bids for cleaning contracts. A few sites have these listed: GovernmentBids.com, GovGB.com, and SAM.gov are all great resources for federal contracts. You can also look through the U.S. General Servies Administration for a wealth of information on bidding on government contracts.
Other resources for finding bids
You don’t need to stick to online sources to find open bids for cleaning contracts. One of the best things you can do is get out there and meet people. Build referral relationships with commercial real estate agents. When someone you contract with is looking to expand or move locations, refer them to your real estate contact. And when they work with a new client, they can refer your services.
Don’t overlook cold calling, either. You don’t need to spend a lot of time on this, but dedicate 30 minutes once each week to making calls. Reach out to property managers and local business owners. You never know what kind of success you might find.
Prepare to win bids
Whether you find open bids for cleaning contracts online or through your personal networks, be sure you’re ready not just to place a bid, but to win. How? It’s really just a matter of a few simple steps.
- Only bid on contracts when you’re sure you can do an excellent job. You don’t want to get in over your head.
- Be sure you know exactly what the bid is for. Again, you don’t want to put a lot of time and energy into creating a bid for work that is outside your scope of capabilities.
- Be prepared to offer a bid quickly. Most open bids will include plenty of lead time so you can research and create a bid, but that may not always be the case. That’s especially true with less formal bids. You can use templates for these or janitorial software to make it easy to adjust numbers and hand over a proposal on the spot.
There are any number of places to look for open bids. This list may be a good start, but you don’t need to limit yourself. The more sources you have for finding bids, the more chances you have to win.
Store your company goals and track against them regularly with Janitorial Manager. Contact us for a free demo to find out more about how we can help you restore your business to where it was and grow it even further from there!