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how to sell to city managers

Discussion in 'Sports Field Management' started by kyfireman2004, Jul 9, 2007.

  1. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    cost effective... by time they have employees.. pay them... pay benifits... struggle to keep them on schedual and then on top of that buy trucks... equipment.. training.

    You can usually save the city money by doing contract work but

    You best be well insured.. You best do good work and your price better be on target.

    Recent experience here.. Guy has been doing 2 cemetarys... rail road crossing... city hall and cop shop along with a few water towers for 23k per year. Price was very low... he didnt need the money really was more for something to do...finally decided he wasnt making money and upped his bid to 36k...

    2 others bid on it... 1 guys... has alot of county contracts and about 100 accts bid 34k.... another guy who does half azz work bids 32k... city gave it to 32k... guy does real bad job... city forfiets contract and gives it to guy with 34k. He is doing good but I wouldnt touch it for less than 40k.

    I think bottom line whoever has lowest price and does reasonably good ork will get it in MOST places. High end areas with higher budgets will usually pay what it takes to get it done right or keep it in house.

    I have tried to coperation sell like your trying with the city... They would actually about break even letting us do it with 17 properties but the caliber of work and less headaches for managment would of made it worth it. Unfortunatly getting the bean counters to realize ALL the costs it takes them to have thier own team do it is hard and they have probably been pitched it before in a number of different ways.

    Maybe someone has a different experience and will chime in.
  2. Accu-cut Lawn Care

    Accu-cut Lawn Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,206

    Bribe them?
  3. N.H.BOY

    N.H.BOY LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,604

    how do you find out when and who to talk to about bids??? City hall?? Sorry for the ?? never bid on these, but sounds fun to try.
  4. BlakeReeder

    BlakeReeder LawnSite Member
    Posts: 14

    I have 4 city contracts. Honestly they probably dont make the money they are worth, but it is an income. once you have one of the contracts and do a great job with it, the others will come with time. The best way of landing these jobs is to figure them as cheap as possible without compromissing quality. Everybody wants a good deal. Watch the newspaper in the city announcement section or check regularly at city hall. Meet the people you need to know and it all comes together.
  5. 1cooltreeguy

    1cooltreeguy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 630

    We have a county contract for 30 different sites. It took 3 years to land it and lowering our price about 20% from what we are accustomed to. No matter what they say THEY are gonna take the lowest Bid. When the lowest bid does a crappy ob then they will rebid it and hope it is even lower. All this in the hopes that a company with a Conscienc will bid low and do a great JOB for them. What a mess. All this to say that we are gonna try to negotiate a 3 year contract with a automatic percentage step up each January. Good Luck
  6. DuraCutter

    DuraCutter LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 806

    For some lco's it's a trap of "look, I have govt work". It's not worth it unless your have absolutely nothing else to do and you want to keep busy and don't need good profits.

  7. JTHutch

    JTHutch LawnSite Member
    Posts: 115

    I'm the horticulture and forestry supervisor for our city. We have a person that when we have bids that need to be taken she sends a letter to a list of contractors and you just have to get on her list. Call city hall and see if there is a list of contractors. But low bid always gets that bid here anyway. That kills me because I came from the contractor side and know many of the other contractors in town and low bidders are almost the worst choice.
  8. JTHutch

    JTHutch LawnSite Member
    Posts: 115

    Oh and we are actualy taking back many of our contracted mowing jobs to save money. Don't know if this is a good idea but going to try it this year.
  9. sildoc

    sildoc LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,925

    I thought I would try this also. So I talked to the parks and rec board, school district board adn a few others. Found out that it was not worth the hasle of putting down a bid and needing 5 times the insurance. That and a lot of them require you to put down a bond on the amount of the bid.
    I find that every one that has these jobs whether they are quality companies do a crappy job because the money is just not there.

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