Identifying and approving specifications prior to requesting a bid is the key to receiving a well-suited proposal. The vendor selection process can be challenging and many Associations utilize their professional management company to handle vendor recruitment and to oversee the process, entrusting the community manager to professionally handle the project. Experienced professional managers will take Board expectations into account and make recommendations as to the qualification process. We are finding that homeowners and/or committees are becoming more involved and want to take part in the qualification and vetting processes.
All maintenance and service contracts bids require certain specifications and requirements to uphold communities standards. This is particularly true in large scale projects or services such as landscaping, painting, roofing, and asphalt (just to name a few). However it is not too uncommon to receive proposals from contending vendors that do not compare “apples to apples.” Identifying specifications is the key to executing a successful request for proposal (RFP).
The term “specification” refers to a description of the definitive requirements that are to be provided. This information may include a description of any requirements for inspecting, testing, or preparing a material, equipment, supplies, service for delivery, and insurance. If the job is extensive, hiring a project manager to prepare the bid specifications so that nothing is missed can prove to be beneficial. Communicating to a vendor the needs of the community is vital, what a vendor might believe is critical to include in a proposal is often not the same as what the Board considers important. The goal is to get comparable bids and ensure all parties are on the same page, this will make the decision process much easier for everyone involved.
Professionalism, accountability and experience should be of the utmost importance when selecting any vendor. AAM has 25 years of management experience, with season trained management professionals, that can help facilitate the vendor selection process.