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Bidding of Engineering Services

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Recently I was involved with a project in which portions of the contract
(structural steel fabrication & erection and auger cast pile installation)
were bid on line via Free Markets
(http://www.freemarkets.com/en/default.asp).  The process involves the
pre-qualification of a select number of contractors who then bid live and
online during about a 1 hour period.  The owner/construction manager is
typically required to award the contract to one of the two lowest bidders.
This is an interesting process to watch live and in some cases can provide
actual cost savings to the owner.

Even more recently my company was asked to participate in a similar process
(referred to as a "reverse auction" by the owner) for the award of the
architectural/structural services for a project. All of the consultants were
pre-qualified as described above. Has anyone ever come across this type of
RFP before?

Matthew Stuart



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