Why Are My Cleaning Bids So Far Apart in Price?
If you have ever taken bids for janitorial cleaning and have seen a wide range of pricing, there are some common sense reasons why this happens. The Building Services Contractors Association International (BSCAI) is our national trade organization and they have statistics from many contractors around our country and around the world. No matter who is giving you a bid, approximately 70% of every dollar quoted is going to pay the wages and payroll taxes of the cleaning personnel. Only about 3% is going to profit. So if you have a wide range of pricing, then rest assured that the difference is in the labor. It could primarily be in the number of cleaning hours in each proposal or a combination of that and the wages that they plan on paying their cleaners.
So what can you do to sift through this? I think that there are basic questions to ask that you have every right to know. Not every cleaning company agrees with me on this, but if you are trying to make a comparison, then it is very important that you know the answers to the following 2 basic questions.
How many cleaning hours per evening do you have included in your proposal? What wage are you going to be paying your cleaners?
If you know the answers to these questions, then I recommend that you do some math and back into what you will be paying per hour on each bid. This is another way to check and see if you think you are getting honest answers to your questions.
Here in Colorado minimum wage is currently $8.31 per hour. The unemployment rate is approximately 3%. What this means is that if we, or anyone else, tries to hire a cleaning person at minimum wage, we will not get any response. We have noticed that hiring anyone at less than $9.50 per hour leads to a higher rate of turnover, which creates more problems for everyone involved. Also, the $9.50 wage for cleaners goes up as you get farther out from the core part of the city. In Highlands Ranch or Boulder, the going wage to keep a cleaner is in the $12.00 per hour range.
To summarize, if a cleaning company underbids the hours to clean your building to give you a lower price, then you will have constant complaints because they do not have enough time to do the work. If they are underpaying their workers, they will have more turnover which also leads to more complaints.
At Summit Service Group, we have the most open and thorough bid process so you will know the answers to these questions. Give us a call at 720-320-7787 to find out more!