Any construction project is a big undertaking—not only are these projects financial investments, but they also require time, attention, and a lot of work. Shoring projects are no different and when you begin bidding for one, you can expect a lot of questions from the client. But as the provider, it’s important to come to the table with questions of your own. This can help you ensure you have the right equipment for the project to provide a quote, verify you have the time and resources, and create an accurate bid. You’ll want to gather high-level information like timelines as well as detailed information, down to the types of concrete formwork ties you may use. This guide covers the questions you should ask yourself and the client before making any commitments.
What is the scope of the work?
This is a pretty basic question, but also one of the most important. Not only do you want to understand the client’s expectations on scope, but you want to make sure you are correctly capturing the scope in your bid proposal. Make sure to use specific language and cover what is and isn’t included as a part of your bid.
Will the groundwater table cause trouble?
If the groundwater table is at a label that may impact your work, you will need to discuss options for de-watering or avoiding any problems in this area.
How deep is the rock?
The depth of the rock may impact your timelines, abilities, and what materials you need to use as a part of the project. It is also a good sign if clients know this information, as it means they likely have good knowledge about the site and what you can expect.
Will it be open-hole drilling or casing?
These techniques both have reasons they may be most applicable for a given product, but they require different levels of effort and materials for your team. This information could impact how you build your bid.
Is there any reason to expect drilling obstructions?
Clients may not know about certain issues that may occur, and that’s okay. You can account for these unplanned issues in your bid. However, if there are any known reasons to anticipate obstructions, clients should disclose those so they can be included as a part of your initial quote. Any undisclosed problems may mean additional charges or contracts, so account for this in your bid.
Can sloping be used to avoid utilities and/or reduce shoring quantity?
It is nice to know if you can use methods that avoid extra time, materials, and expense. Knowing this information can help you choose the right materials, like concrete shoring.
What utilities may need to be located or exposed?
Shoring projects can often impact utilities at the site. Not only do you want to know what those utilities may be, but you’ll also want to understand what can be done with them to prevent obstruction, and what will need to be in use during the project.
Will the client have permission to drill under the adjacent property?
If the shoring calls for drilling on the nearby properties, this will be an issue of property and permits. The client is responsible for getting this permission, as it could impact your work if not. You can include language that ensures the client is liable for these issues.
Are there any environmental concerns that could impact the safety or scope of work?
This may include water or rock in the nearby earth, as well as permits regarding local ecosystems that do or do not allow for construction to occur at the site.
What is the landscape of bid proposals?
It is always good to know what you are up against. If you can find out who else is bidding, what they are providing, and any other information, you can use this to differentiate yourself from the competition.
Are our assumptions reasonable?
No matter how much preparation you do, you will be making assumptions about a project in order to complete a bid. You can list these assumptions out specifically, giving the client to agree or disagree with these at the outset.
What other information may we need to get started?
Based on the specifics of the product, ask yourself what may be missing. You may simply want to understand if the client has a preference on shoring partners or if they have had bad experiences in the past you can avoid moving forward. In some cases asking common concrete questions can ease the process and save unnecessary costs.