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How to Bid for Jobs in Your Area

Growth Trends for Related Jobs

The bidding process for jobs first involves finding suitable work that pertains to your skill set or professional specialization. Work typically performed by specialized contractors usually involves a system where companies and individuals review work orders, and then submit documentation including a pricing structure including the total cost of labor and materials. The project owner or developer reviews the bids received by multiple providers and then makes a decision based upon price and contractor qualifications, as well as other factors. Bidding can occur at all levels of the work process, from managers, general contractors to subcontractors.

Find work that aligns with your particular specialty in the local area. Check want ads in city and neighborhood newspapers for possible work. Consider placing ads in the local phone book and newspapers for your services, since people often look in these places for service providers. Use online job bidding sites to find work opportunities. Determine a strategy that provides the most relevant ongoing bid leads for your services or business.

Learn about bidding process methods. For example, some bids for work can be made based upon the square footage of a project, as well as on a time and materials basis. In construction based bidding, published construction data is made readily available to the general public and interested parties, such as contractors and construction managers. Several project owner entities may allow for the release of project details in order to obtain contractor bids. Some services may be subscription based or charge flat rates for project data.

Consult the Associated General Contractors of America for resources and information about general and specialty contractors, service providers and suppliers. Consider joining the AGC national trade association for construction business resources and networking opportunities.

Prepare the bid by outlining the specific tasks required and by estimating how long each item will take to complete. Use the hourly rate you are charging or paying employees to multiply the number of hours needed to complete the work. Include a line for the cost of materials and equipment, vehicles, general overhead and insurance costs. The amount should also include a certain percentage which provides a profit margin for the work performed.

Submit the bid to the project owner either on paper or electronically. Ensure that you retain a copy and file it in a follow-up folder for future reference. Include all relevant information about specific tasks to be performed. Outline any relevant or specific exclusions. Use a template that includes your contact information so that potential customers may contact you quickly with any requests for clarification or to award the job to you or your company.


Check the McGraw Hill Construction Costs Data book for information on current material and labor pricing.

Review the Checklist for Prescreening Contractors at the Contractors State License Board for tips on how to appeal to consumers.


Ensure that you and your company adhere to any state and local laws concerning your services.

Monitor your licensing information to ensure that it remains current at all times.