Janitorial Services Bids: How To Compare Apples-To-Apples

Posted by Ananth Rao on Feb 15, 2016 3:20:21 PM

 

So, you’ve bid out janitorial services at your building. You’ve done the hard work; assembled specs, prepared bidder packages, conducted walkthroughs, answered numerous questions from contractors, and now you are finally ready to see who’s giving you the best deal.

 

Where do you begin?

 

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Consider this scenario: you have three contractors bidding on a 100,000 square foot office building, and your summarized numbers look like this: 

CONTRACTOR NAME

TOTAL MONTHLY COST INCLUDING SALES TAX

Contractor A

$ 15,000 per month

Contractor B

$ 18,000 per month

Contractor C

$ 21,000 per month

 

Who’s giving you the best deal?

It is evident that Contractor A has the best price, and, therefore, must be offering the best value, assuming you are comparing apples-to-apples. However, are you making an apples-to-apples comparison? So you dig a little deeper to find the answer to the question - what am I getting for what I am paying?

 

"What am I getting for what I'm paying?"

Since the level of janitorial service at your building is mostly determined by how many hours your building is cleaned each day, you start comparing the number of hours that each contractor is proposing. Let’s assume that proposed staffing looks something like this: 

CONTRACTOR NAME

TOTAL PROPOSED CLEANING HOURS PER DAY

Contractor A

20 hours per day

Contractor B

24 hours per day

Contractor C

28 hours per day

 

It now looks like Contractor A is the least expensive because they are proposing the least number of cleaning hours each day. That explains it. However, what is the cost per cleaning hour for each contractor, you wonder. I mean, we are trying to compare apples-to-apples here!

 

 "We are trying to compare apples-to-apples here!"

 

So we dig a little deeper and come up with this: 

CONTRACTOR NAME

TOTAL CLEANING HOURS PER MONTH (=HOURS PER DAY X DAYS PER WEEK X WEEKS PER MONTH)

COST PER HOUR (=TOTAL MONTHLY COST/HOURS PER MONTH)

Contractor A

400 hours per month

$37.5 per hour

Contractor B

500 hours per month

$37.5 per hour

Contractor C

560 hours per month

$37.5 per hour

(I assumed that the building is cleaned five days a week and that there are four weeks in a month.)

 

Miraculously, the cost per hour for each contractor is precisely the same!

So, it looks like Contractor A is still your number one pick. However, is one hour of cleaning from Contractor A the same as one hour of cleaning from Contractors B & C? This comparison is where it gets tricky.

Let’s assume that Contractor B’s idea of janitorial service is to offer:

  • Green Seal (GS-42) Certified service
  • trained, experienced staff, management, and supervisors
  • a sound quality control and inspection program
  • a LEED-AP to assist with your LEED/green cleaning project
  • a great safety record
  • E-verify to screen for undocumented workers
  • great references
  • Things that you love!

Also, let’s assume that Contractor A’s idea of hiring, screening and service delivery is to find the first person who is willing to work, hand them a mop and broom and say “go forth and clean!”; Contractor A is a bit iffy on service. Moreover, since we are making subjective comparisons, let’s assume Contractor C’s idea of janitorial service is about average, vanilla (does the minimum required, and gets by).

 

 "Is one hour of cleaning from one contractor the same as one hour of cleaning from another contractor?"

 

Now, is an hour of cleaning from Contractor A the same as an hour of cleaning from Contractor B? Obviously not! You would think that an hour from Contractor B is better than an hour from Contractor A or Contractor C.

However, how much better?

If you assume that an hour of cleaning from Contractor B is 5% better than average and that an hour from Contractor A is 5% less than average (remember, Contractor C is average!), you will come up with this: 

CONTRACTOR NAME

FACTOR BY WHICH CONTRACTOR IS BETTER OR WORSE THAN AVERAGE (100% is average)

ADJUSTED COST PER HOUR (=ACTUAL COST PER HOUR X PERCENT BETTER OR WORSE THAN AVERAGE)

Contractor A

Worse than average, 95%

$ 39.47 per hour

Contractor B

Better than average, 105%

$ 35.71 per hour

Contractor C

Average, 100%

$ 37.50 per hour

 

The clear winner in this scenario is Contractor B. 

 


So, there you have it!


How do you compare janitorial bids? Share your thoughts and ideas.



 

Topics: janitorial bidding, janitorial quote, janitorial pricing

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