When Bad Things Happen to Bids: Strategies for Ensuring a Successful Public Construction Contract

Jul 8, 2015, 17:28 PM
These educational activities meet UPPCC’s criteria for 'Continuing Education – Non-Accredited'

When Bad Things Happen to Bids: Strategies for Ensuring a Successful Public Construction Project

Duration: 1-Day Course

**Check the Course Catalog for required attendee minimums

Contact hours: 8 hours

Instructor: Mike Purdy

Search the Course Schedule for a course near you.

1 day courses:

Standard pricing:

Institute Members - $305

Non-Members - $405

** Receive a $25 early registration discount by registering 60 or more days in advance of the course.  A late fee of $50 will be assessed for those registrations received within 30 days of the course.


General Description

Despite the best efforts of public agencies, things often go awry during the bidding process, leading to disputes, delays, and litigation. Sometimes, these bumps along the road of bidding and award may be caused by honest mistakes or at times malicious methods of a bidder. At other times, the issues arise because the public agency isn’t well informed and hasn’t developed clear and protest-resistant bidding documents. With knowledge, careful strategies, well-crafted language in bidding documents, and an understanding of how contractors approach the bidding process, public agencies can reduce their risks and help ensure a successful rather than contentious and costly construction project. This practical and interactive course reviews common bidding issues, outlines best practices, and provides tools and strategies for public agencies to manage appropriately when bad things happen to bids. If you enjoy this course, we recommend these two complementary courses: Best Practices in Developing Public Construction Bid Documents and Tools for Ensuring Contractor Performance on Public Construction Projects.


Intended Audience

General Audience





Course Objective and Intended Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course participants will be able to:
  • Recognize why bidders make mistakes in last minute bid preparation
  • Distinguish the difference between responsiveness and responsibility
  • Identify tools available to address bid price errors
  • Assess agency bid documents to reduce risks
  • Recognize when a bid guaranty should be forfeited
  • Evaluate whether a bid is materially unbalanced to the agency’s potential detriment
  • Identify bid protection strategies for preventing bids in excess of the available budget


Course Outline

Why Aren’t Bidders More Careful?

  • Why Do Bidders Make Mistakes?
  • Missing Bid Prices
  • Conflict Between Numbers and Words
  • Bid Calculation Errors
  • Claims of Error

Is Your Bidder Playing Games?

  • Bid is Too Low
  • Unbalanced Bids
  • Conditioned or Qualified Bids

Will the Real Low Bidder Please Stand Up?

  • Additive and Alternate Bids
  • Tie Bids
  • Responsive Bids
  • Responsible Bidders
  • Local Bid Preferences
  • Bid Protests and Appeals
  • Conflicts of Interest

What Can You Do to Manage Bidding?

  • What Should Be on the Bid Form?
  • Why Should You Limit Submissions with the Bid?
  • On What Days Should You Not Receive Bids?
  • When is a Bid Late?
  • When Should You Take a Bid Guaranty?


NIGP Course Cancellation Policy

Registration and payment must be received 30 days prior to the seminar start date. After this time, registrations will be based on space availability.  A full refund, less a $75 administrative fee will be given for cancellations made in writing 31+ days prior to the seminar date by emailing RegistrationInfo@nigp.org. No refunds are given for cancellations received within 30 days of the seminar start date. There are no refunds for no-shows. If the seminar is cancelled for any reason, NIGP's liability is limited to the registration fee only.

Attendee substitutions within the same agency may be done at any time with email notification to NIGP. If attending via scholarship, please provide documentation verifying the scholarship issuer’s name and contact information in lieu of payment information.

  • Construction
  • Bids, RFPs, and Proposals
  • Courses
Back to Top