I’ve been working within the industry for over 27 years and still, I witness sloppy tender presentations within the Building Services Industry. Larger MEP Companies tend to keep clear of smaller projects focussing on £100K + MEP fees. However, I’ve witnessed past employers sending a fee proposal via an email, normally a three-line reply without even considering the project risks. And let’s not forget the magic figure 2.6% of the construction value equates to the MEP design fees, it always amazed me the lack of effort past employers put into their fee proposals.
To date, RDK Consulting Engineers have an 85% successful appointed rate in relation to our fee proposals. Forget the magic figure of 2.6%, read all the associated literature associated with the project to understand the client’s requirements. Figure 1 illustrates one of our latest Asian Restaurants and a brief description of the project. Make the effort and insert photographs that are related to the project, a sloppy presentation or a three-line email shows a lack of effort and interest in the project. Figure 1 gave the client confidence in RDK Consulting engineers and the feedback in relation to our fee proposal was very welcome.
This was the client’s first restaurant and it is extremely important to meet and explain with the client the various RIBA stages to a successful MEP design. The client was very appreciative and again it boosted their confidence in RDK Consulting Engineers. Explain everything simply, rememberer 90% of the time you’re dealing with a non-technical individual. Trust is key to any relationship and a successful relationship will lead to repeat work.
Considerations and risks are the key sections within the fee proposal. Lendlease the landlord had a strict set of criteria for the retail unit. It is the responsibility of the engineer to read all the small print to determine the risks regarding the project to protect your client. After submitting our fee proposal, the client was not aware of the considerations especially in relation to the grease traps. RDK’s risks and considerations consisted of three pages and the client felt more secure and at ease now that RDK identified the employer’s requirements.
Bottom line, read all the associated material provided by the landlord to protect you and most importantly the client!
To summarise, put the effort in to your fee proposals. Spend at least 4 hours completing a power point presentation, incorporating photos and paragraphs. Use photographs that are related to the project theme and add clour. Ensure all the landlord literature is reviewed and fully understtod and highlight this within the fee proposal! This will give the landlord and client confidence in your company. And my final advice, always say thank you, it costs nothing even if you’re not successful with the tender. See figure 5.