CLICK HERE AND JOIN OUR COMMUNITY TODAY, IT'S FREE!
Go Back   Electrician Talk - Professional Electrical Contractors Forum > Electrical Forum > Business, Marketing, and Sales

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-05-2010, 09:58 AM   #1
Gone.
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: here
Posts: 2,412
Default On getting jobs to bid

So you're a new contractor trying to find jobs to bid in your state/area and don't know where to look.
Do you just wait for advertising to send jobs to bid your way? Or, do you have a website, place in the newspaper, that you go to to find jobs that are already out to bid?

So far, the jobs I have been doing, are either service work or feel like side jobs. I hate feeling like a trunk slamming hack.

I am a one man shop, so the jobs I am looking for are smaller but not tiny.

JohnR is offline   Reply With Quote
Join Contractor Talk

Join the #1 Electrician Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

ElectricianTalk.com - Are you a Professional Electrical Contractor? If so we invite you to join our community and see what it has to offer. Our site is specifically designed for you and it's the leading place for electricians to meet online. No homeowners asking DIY questions. Just fellow tradesmen who enjoy talking about their business, their trade, and anything else that comes up. No matter what your specialty is you'll find that ElectricianTalk.com is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally free!

Join ElectricianTalk.com - Click Here JOIN FOR FREE


Warning: The topics covered on this site include activities in which there exists the potential for serious injury or death. ElectricianTalk.com DOES NOT guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information contained on this site. Always use proper safety precaution and reference reliable outside sources before attempting any construction or remodeling task!

Old 10-05-2010, 10:39 AM   #2
Fried Bologna um um good!
 
jwjrw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: nc
Posts: 8,092
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnR View Post
So you're a new contractor trying to find jobs to bid in your state/area and don't know where to look.
Do you just wait for advertising to send jobs to bid your way? Or, do you have a website, place in the newspaper, that you go to to find jobs that are already out to bid?

So far, the jobs I have been doing, are either service work or feel like side jobs. I hate feeling like a trunk slamming hack.

I am a one man shop, so the jobs I am looking for are smaller but not tiny.
I get a few calls a month from my web site. I get about 30% of our business from Angie's List. The rest is word of mouth, repeat customers, gc's and other advertising. Seeing as how you are just starting off look on craigslist too. I got a 10k job off there.

__________________
The more I learn the less I seem to know......
jwjrw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2010, 10:53 AM   #3
Registered Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: State of Euphoria
Posts: 14,058
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnR View Post
So you're a new contractor trying to find jobs to bid in your state/area and don't know where to look.
Do you just wait for advertising to send jobs to bid your way? Or, do you have a website, place in the newspaper, that you go to to find jobs that are already out to bid?

So far, the jobs I have been doing, are either service work or feel like side jobs. I hate feeling like a trunk slamming hack.

I am a one man shop, so the jobs I am looking for are smaller but not tiny.

How old is the company? Expect it to be pretty unstable for the first 3-4 years
mcclary's electrical is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2010, 11:43 AM   #4
Chairman of the Bored
 
BuzzKill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Atlanta, Ga.
Posts: 9,477
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by mcclary's electrical View Post
How old is the company? Expect it to be pretty unstable for the first 3-4 years
Agreed I am in my 3rd year now and unstable is THE word.
Do a search on here, 480 has a great list of cheap marketing ideas.
__________________
I'd rather be sleeping.
BuzzKill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2010, 07:33 PM   #5
Meathead
 
CTshockhazard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: CT
Posts: 498
Default

Forget it John, there is no work in this state.

OK, seriously, I've done fair, at best, with craig's list. Lotsa wasted time giving free estimates, lucky to get 1 or 2 out of 10 and right now some a-hole keeps posting this:

Don't Call an Electrician!

Call Jonathan for a Free Estimate. Friendly and Affordable.

Replacing:
Outlets
Light switches
Light fixtures
Ceiling Fans
Oven/Range Elements
Rewiring Lamps
Anything you can think of. No Job too small.

These things can easily cost Hundreds if you call an electrician.
Call Jonathan @ (860) 000 8067

License info: Unlicensed


I'll second this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by BuzzKill View Post
Do a search on here, 480 has a great list of cheap marketing ideas.
I'd be a lot closer to calling it quits if I felt I could stand going back to work for someone else, savings are running out.
__________________
Go away!
CTshockhazard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2010, 12:44 AM   #6
Gone.
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: here
Posts: 2,412
Default

First year, and yes really unstable -good term.

What I kind of had in mind was something like a list that a GC would publish on that would allow contractors to bid on. I just hate feeling like the only reason I got a job was either pity or because someone already knew me. Although the last one isn't so bad.

And no that isn't me posting that craigslist ad.
JohnR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2010, 05:27 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: NEW YORK
Posts: 181
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnR View Post
So you're a new contractor trying to find jobs to bid in your state/area and don't know where to look.
Do you just wait for advertising to send jobs to bid your way? Or, do you have a website, place in the newspaper, that you go to to find jobs that are already out to bid?

So far, the jobs I have been doing, are either service work or feel like side jobs. I hate feeling like a trunk slamming hack.

I am a one man shop, so the jobs I am looking for are smaller but not tiny.
t
This may sound a little advanced, but here is how to do it:
1-Subscribe to Dodge, CDC or Reed Construction. Get a subscription that is in your geographical area.

2-Look at these reports and find projects you are interested in. Call up the bidding GC's or Public Agencies and obtain plans. An even better solution is to get plans and specs on line and download them. Then put your bid out to all the bidding GC's. This is a good idea, since many GC will not want to bother sending you plans if they do not know you.

Last, you can sometimes find projects in the free legal section of the newspaper.

Commercial work is a different animal. No one is going to look you up in the phone book and call you out of the blue or get you out of Craiglist. The way I just described is how the world of commercial work works.
gptechelec is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to gptechelec For This Useful Post:
JohnR (10-13-2010)
Old 10-06-2010, 07:27 AM   #8
Stand-Up Philosopher
 
George Stolz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Fort Collins, CO
Posts: 372
Send a message via AIM to George Stolz Send a message via MSN to George Stolz Send a message via Yahoo to George Stolz
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CTshockhazard View Post
I'd be a lot closer to calling it quits if I felt I could stand going back to work for someone else, savings are running out.
Well, when you hit rock bottom your perspective will change. I went back singing to the job I couldn't wait to leave. An involuntary two week break did it for me.
__________________
-George
George Stolz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2010, 07:34 AM   #9
Fried Bologna um um good!
 
jwjrw's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: nc
Posts: 8,092
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Stolz View Post
Well, when you hit rock bottom your perspective will change. I went back singing to the job I couldn't wait to leave. An involuntary two week break did it for me.
I could not imagine having to work for someone else again. I would be very unhappy. I hope our business keeps on keeping on.
__________________
The more I learn the less I seem to know......
jwjrw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2010, 08:15 AM   #10
Meathead
 
CTshockhazard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: CT
Posts: 498
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnR View Post
And no that isn't me posting that craigslist ad.
Doh, I hope that you didn't think that I thought that that was you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Stolz View Post
Well, when you hit rock bottom your perspective will change. I went back singing to the job I couldn't wait to leave. An involuntary two week break did it for me.
No argument here, but no way will I go back to the place I left.

Might try a different contractor, but I think if I get out, I'm getting out of the trade even though I do enjoy it and it has served me well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jwjrw View Post
I could not imagine having to work for someone else again. I would be very unhappy. I hope our business keeps on keeping on.
__________________
Go away!
CTshockhazard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-2010, 05:07 PM   #11
Gone.
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: here
Posts: 2,412
Default

hey CT, I have heard there is a very PROFESSIONAL place that is hiring, might be able to get into it.
JohnR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-2010, 05:21 PM   #12
Senile Member
 
macmikeman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 11,886
Default

I wouldn't mind going to work for somebody else. But after 26 years of total goofing off who in their right mind would hire me.....:la ughing:
macmikeman is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to macmikeman For This Useful Post:
jwjrw (10-13-2010), Magnettica (10-13-2010)
Old 10-13-2010, 06:03 PM   #13
Nothin' To Lose
 
Magnettica's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Rahway, NJ
Posts: 14,087
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnR View Post
So you're a new contractor trying to find jobs to bid in your state/area and don't know where to look.
Do you just wait for advertising to send jobs to bid your way? Or, do you have a website, place in the newspaper, that you go to to find jobs that are already out to bid?

So far, the jobs I have been doing, are either service work or feel like side jobs. I hate feeling like a trunk slamming hack.

I am a one man shop, so the jobs I am looking for are smaller but not tiny.
Then you're doing fine. Definitely get a website and use some money for SEO. Those small jobs usually lead to repeat customers. Show up on time, do the job the way a professional would, and believe me things will take off. You'll see. I was where you were a year ago and for me things are starting to take off. I make myself available to potential customers - even on Sunday -- because it's all about NOW. Try giving your customers stuff for free, like educating them on what it is that you do. Customers love to know that you care about them. Good luck brother.
__________________
Be persistent, transparent, and more importantly, on time.

Last edited by Magnettica; 10-13-2010 at 06:05 PM.
Magnettica is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-2010, 07:12 PM   #14
Those who can do, period!
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: CONNECTICUT
Posts: 37
Default Angies

Quote:
Originally Posted by jwjrw View Post
I get a few calls a month from my web site. I get about 30% of our business from Angie's List. The rest is word of mouth, repeat customers, gc's and other advertising. Seeing as how you are just starting off look on craigslist too. I got a 10k job off there.
Are you paying them/ We are listed on there and get some work but I have not paid, although they are persistantly asking.
wirenuter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2010, 10:06 PM   #15
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: mn
Posts: 118
Default

I started my biz last June. Here is what has woked for me. Your going to have to do the Craigslist thing and often. Get 3-4 different adds and post them daily (different add each day). Turn down the wierd speaking ones that want $30/hr (or less) service. Have a minimum for even reseting a gfi, I do 2hr@ my hourly rate. And this seems to be taboo on here but Service Magic does work... But only if you are a 1 man shop. Sign up and when you get a text message from them, answer ASAP!!! Dont put that last breaker or wire nut on, grab your phone and call. I dont get them all, and it frustrating when you cant get ahold of the customer, but all in all it has worked out for me. Dollars spent compared to dollars out..

I'm not a SM guy either, just trying to help a guy.. look my license up ca06103, minnesota.

BTW.. Im ditching SM as soon as I dont need them anymore, But it seems to help when you are starting out..!
redseal is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to redseal For This Useful Post:
LERelec (06-05-2011)
Old 10-17-2010, 11:40 PM   #16
Heavily Armed Member
 
HARRY304E's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Reporting from the east coast of Moonbatchusetts..
Posts: 39,497
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by redseal View Post
I started my biz last June. Here is what has woked for me. Your going to have to do the Craigslist thing and often. Get 3-4 different adds and post them daily (different add each day). Turn down the wierd speaking ones that want $30/hr (or less) service. Have a minimum for even reseting a gfi, I do 2hr@ my hourly rate. And this seems to be taboo on here but Service Magic does work... But only if you are a 1 man shop. Sign up and when you get a text message from them, answer ASAP!!! Dont put that last breaker or wire nut on, grab your phone and call. I dont get them all, and it frustrating when you cant get ahold of the customer, but all in all it has worked out for me. Dollars spent compared to dollars out..

I'm not a SM guy either, just trying to help a guy.. look my license up ca06103, minnesota.

BTW.. Im ditching SM as soon as I dont need them anymore, But it seems to help when you are starting out..!

Yes craigs list works post as many a day as you can

HARRY304E is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Jobs? JBIRD Off Topic 5 09-17-2010 12:45 PM
Thank you President Obama. JOBS, JOBS, JOBS marmanson96 General Electrical Discussion 39 02-17-2010 11:02 AM
Where the jobs are.. B4T General Electrical Discussion 45 12-06-2009 05:06 PM
Jobs BryanMD Business, Marketing, and Sales 2 11-14-2009 07:32 PM
Jobs jbfan Off Topic 0 08-24-2009 09:06 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 04:07 PM.


Copyright 2006-2014 Escalate Media LP. All Rights Reserved
Our Pro Sites Network
ContractorTalk.com | DrywallTalk.com | HVACSite.com | PaintTalk.com | PlumbingZone.com | RoofingTalk.com