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  • Red QS

Lost Another Tender?

So you lost the job you priced…

Well, it was probably the QS’s fault that you lost it, right?

Because that’s why you use a quantity surveyor right, so that you are guaranteed to win the job??


There are a million reasons as to why you may lose a tender, even if you have had a quantity surveyor price it for you. Here are a few examples…..

  1. You may have been up against a lot of other tenderers, each and every one will have approached the job differently. If they approach the job with a different method to yours then there is a significant possibility their way may have simply come in cheaper because of it. Their method may use less labour, or use materials differently as an example.

  2. If you are in a competitive situation, how do you know the others are pricing to the same level of detail as you? A guy who is happy to throw a round number on the back of a napkin is impossible to compare to a company who has been considered and detailed in their approach to coming up with their tender offer. Does the end client know the difference between the two?

  3. Taking margin into consideration, as we all know the definition of margin is offsite overheads plus profit every company’s margin may well be different ….. Offsite overheads are very unlikely to be the same from one company to another as all have different running costs. The guy who has a small home office and mostly works out the back of his ute is a totally different kettle of fish to the guy who has an office full of people to pay, despite the fact they may be tendering and completing the same types of jobs. Even 1% could make all the difference between winning and losing a job. You guys are not all the same!

  4. How bout the other guy who just missed a whole lot of stuff in his tender price? If I had a dollar for every time I heard a builder tell me he had lost a job to someone else, and also say he has no idea how the other guy could do it for that price…. I’d be rolling in it. I see builders tip over all the time, and I clean up jobs all the time where a builder has run out of cash part way through completing a project…. So this is definitely a thing.

  5. You know a client doesn’t actually have to pick the lowest tender too, right? You might have been five grand cheaper, but they picked the other guy because he was a better schmoozer than you, or he had done another job similar, or wrote a tender letter without spelling mistakes….. who knows!!!!

The real reason you use a QS

So if you are using a quantity surveyor and you think that is your money shot to win every job you price, then sorry team, but you are missing a trick.

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