“Every day's a deadline here,” said Chief Estimator Bobby Joe Roberson. “When we’re bidding for the government, they'll release a job, and we have to imagine everything that's involved with it. We have about a week-and-a-half two weeks to get all that together and submit the proper questions by the deadline.”
Bidding is just one of many challenges. Every municipal government has multiple sectors, and each one might want their bidding information in a slightly different format. Because the buildings are occupied, AMSCO recognizes they are coming into people’s workplaces and must treat the surroundings with the greatest possible respect and care.
“The challenge is when you walk onto a marble floor or a carpeted area with all this fine wood and beautiful furniture,” said Parker. “You’re going to cut a hole the size of a small school bus through the roof, and people still need to use their office space. These are occupied buildings.”
In some ways, these jobs can be more challenging than the initial construction – the AMSCO team has to make significant changes to install the HVAC system without compromising the structural integrity of the building.
“We're not just doing mechanical pieces,” said Branch Manager Lance Gorney. “We are doing the structural portions, making sure the roof doesn't fall in, reinforcing the structure.”
The Value of Rigorous Preparation
AMSCO overcomes these challenges with intensive planning and trusted subcontractors. The planning starts with capturing video of the site. It helps the team visually understand the job’s parameters, as well as record the worksite’s condition before they start.
They also work hard to set accurate expectations. In one instance, the team was putting down a layer of plastic to protect the carpet. The downside was that heels could get caught in the plastic. The AMSCO team was careful to communicate this, and other potential issues, to the people in the building.