Once bids start to arrive for your project, you will need to manage the bids. This guide tells you how to:
- View the details of the bids you have received
- Contact a service provider for clarification
- Request a revised bid
- Accept a bid
- Send a contract to the winning bidder
- Review and/or recommend a service provider’s work
- Reopen bidding if no bids are received by the bid deadline
Viewing the details of the bids you have received
When a bid is submitted for one of your projects you will be notified within the TracFax system and by email (see separate help guide to “Managing Your Communication Settings”).
To view the details of bids as they come in, either click on the notification message relating to the arrival of the bid, or locate the relevant project in the TracFax system via the “Projects” button (for details on how to do this see our guide “Managing Your Projects”). From the list of projects, click on the red numbered icon in the “bids” column alongside the relevant project. This will take you to the bids screen for that particular project.
All bids that have currently been received will be displayed as “tabs” towards the left of the screen. The tab for each bid will summarise the bidder’s name, their current customer-rating within the TracFax system and the overall price of their bid for your project. You can view more detail for each bid by clicking on the tab for that bidder. This screen will include a summary of information about the bidding service provider. To view more information about them, click on the “View Profile” link under the service provider’s name. This will allow you to view the service provider’s full TracFax profile, including any ratings and recommendations they have received from other users of the TracFax system.
Contacting Service Providers for Clarification
Once a bid has been submitted on your project, you may contact the bidder directly using the TracFax messaging system to request clarification or further details. To do this, follow the steps described above to review the relevant bid. Locate the “company contact info” box on the right of the screen and click on the “Send Message” button. The “New Message To…..” pop-up will be displayed. Type the message you wish to send into the blank box and click “Send Message”. You can upload relevant files to be sent as attachments to the message by clicking on the “Upload files” button prior to sending your message.
Note that the “company contact info” box will also contain the email address of the service provider so that you can contact them directly. However, sending messages within the TracFax system will ensure that all communications related to a specific project are stored in one system.
Requesting a Revised Bid
You may wish to ask a Service Provider to submit a revised bid on a particular project. This may be following contact/negotiation with the Service Provider or may be as a result of a change in requirements. To do this, follow the instructions above to go to the bids screen for the relevant project. All bids that have currently been received will be displayed as “tabs” towards the left of the screen.
Click on the tab for the service provider in question and then click on the “Request Rebid” button on the right hand side of the screen. Type a message in the “Request Rebid” pop-up to explain to the service provider why you are asking them to update their bid.
Note that if the bidding deadline has already passed on this project, you will need to choose a new bidding deadline with a future date so that the service provider is able to submit a revised bid. You can do this by clicking in the “Bid Deadline” box in the “Request Rebid” pop-up and selecting a new deadline date from the pop-up calendar.
When you have finished, click on the “Send Request” button.
You will receive a notification when the service provider submits a revised bid.
Accepting a Bid
Once bidding has closed on a particular project, that project will be moved to the “Award” tab on the “Projects” screen in the TracFax system to let you know that it’s time to accept one of the bids – also known as “Awarding” the business to the winning bidder.
To do this, follow the instructions above to go to the bids screen for the relevant project. All bids that have currently been received will be displayed as “tabs” towards the left of the screen. Click on the tab for the bid you have decided to accept. Double-check that you are happy with all of the bid details and then click on the “Accept Bid” button on the right hand side of the page.
The “Accept bid from...” Pop-up will appear, asking you to confirm that you wish to accept the bid from this service provider. You can also type a message into the pop-up that will be sent to the service provider along with the confirmation that they have won the business. When you have finished, click the “accept bid” button.
In addition to sending a message to the winning bidder, a notification will be sent to all the other bidders letting them know that they have not been successful.
Note that once you have awarded the project you are committed to doing business with this service provider under the terms set out in the project and the bid.
Generating a Contract for the Winning Bidder
As soon as you have accepted a bid, the TracFax system will generate a contract for the work based on the project details, the project terms and conditions and the pricing details from the winning bid.
To view this auto-generated contract, locate the project within the TracFax system and click on the “Contracts” tab on the left of the screen.
If you wish to make changes to the contract before sending it to the bidder, click on the “edit” button beside the title “Contract for [Service Provider’s Name]” at the top of the Contracts page. Make your changes in the text editing box and click the “Save” button at the top of the screen when you have finished. You may return to the contract at a later date to make further changes before sending it to the winning bidder.
If you wish to un-do any changes you have made to the contract, click on the “Regenerate Contract” link in the “Additional Actions” box on the right of the screen but note that this will result in ALL manual changes to the contract being undone, not just the most recent change.
Sending a contract to the Winning Bidder
Once you have finished editing the contract and have saved your changes, click on the “Send Contract to Service Provider” link in the “Additional Actions” box on the right of the screen.
A pop-up will invite you to type a message for the service provider that will be sent along with the contract. When you have finished, click the “Send” button in the pop-up to send the contract.
Downloading a Copy of the Contract
To obtain a copy of the contract as a PDF file, click on the “Download Contract” link in the “Additional Actions” box on the right of the screen. You will be prompted to either open the PDF file or save it to your computer.
Reviewing/Recommending a Service Provider’s Work
When you have awarded a project to a Service Provider, TracFax will encourage you to leave feedback for that Service Provider to review the quality of their work. This will help in the matching process for future projects and will help other TracFax users to make their own selection of service providers. Note that your name will be displayed alongside your review and that you cannot leave a review of a service provider unless you have awarded them a project.
You will be reminded in the Home Screen if any of your projects are awaiting review via an on-screen message indicating: “You have xxx projects that are waiting for you to review the service provider's work”. To access a list of the relevant projects, click on the link in this on-screen message.
Click on the name of a project to begin the process of leaving feedback. You will be taken to the project Dashboard where an on-screen message will encourage you to “Please leave a review for [Service Provider]. Click on the “Leave Review” button alongside this message to be taken to the “Submit Review” screen.
In the submit review screen you will be asked to rate the Service Provider on a 1-5 star scale for the following categories:
- Overall Satisfaction
- Quality of Work
- Price (Value)
To leave a rating for a category, click on the star icons (for example, to leave a four-star rating, click on the fourth star from the left). You also have options to leave comments about the Service Provider’s work in the “comments” box before clicking on “Save Review” to save your changes.
It is not currently possible to amend a review at a later date. This feature is likely to be added to TracFax in a future release.
Reopen bidding if no bids are received by the bid deadline
In the event that none of the matched Service Providers submit a bid by the bid deadline, you can re-open the project bidding to the entire TracFax network.
First, locate the relevant project via the “Award” tab in the Projects screen and click on the project name or the “Dashboard” icon to view the project dashboard.
Click on the “Set New Auto Match Deadline” button. In the “Set New Auto Match Deadline” pop-up that appears, click in the “Set New Auto Match Deadline” field and select a new deadline date from the Calendar that appears. Click Save when you have finished.
TracFax will attempt to auto-match your project to any relevant service provider in the TracFax system. This may take a few moments. Auto-matched service providers will be invited to bid on your project.