Reaching out to Potential Bidders: Design and Implementation of the Group Jobs Contractor Outreach Program

This paper discusses the development of a comprehensive Contractor Outreach Program to address a lack of bidders for the City of San Diego's water and sewer pipeline replacement and rehabilitation projects, called "Group Jobs." The Engineering and Capital Projects Department recognized that these projects were receiving only a limited number of bids that were above the project cost estimate; these higher bids meant that the City was paying more than anticipated to complete Group Jobs. This prompted the City to explore ways to inform contractors about Group Job bidding opportunities, and encourage them to bid on these jobs. Additionally, City representatives identified the need for similar contractor outreach among the Water Capital Improvement Projects division of the Water Department, and an opportunity arose to forge a partnership between the two departments. This partnership resulted in teamwork and cost-sharing across departments to implement the outreach program. Department representatives and consultants identified market pressures and other reasons accounting for the lack in bidders, and developed a program that applied traditional marketing techniques to a more non-traditional target audience of contractors. The resulting multi-faceted program was designed to reach the key audiences, inform contractors about Group Jobs and Water Capital Improvement Projects, show them how to bid on a job with the City of San Diego, and then encourage them to begin submitting bids. It included a variety of formats to reach contractors, including print advertising, direct mail, email, and television. It was also designed to incorporate a variety of options to make it easy for contractors to express an interest in Group Jobs: telephone hotline, mail-in cards, fax-in forms, and a Web site. The paper reviews the program from inception to implementation, including the initial analysis that prompted the creation of the program, through planning the entire program, implementing each step of the plan and evaluating the results of the program. It is an illustration of how marketing techniques and programs can be applied to the needs of public works agencies and engineering and contracting firms.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: CD-ROM
  • Features: Figures;
  • Pagination: 10p
  • Monograph Title: Pipeline Engineering and Construction: What's on the Horizon? Proceedings of the Pipelines 2004 International Conference, August 1-4, 2004, San Diego, California

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01003197
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 0784407452
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 22 2005 1:06PM