Credit: Matt Wood

The homeowner needs a siding job and sets out to collect several bids. If your bid is among them, a scope of work that describes in detail what you plan to do will add credibility and will help your company get the job — especially if other proposals are slim on specifics.

After visiting prospects to present his plans for a siding job, owner Steven Jones, of Tulsa Renew, an Oklahoma home improvement company, emails prospects a three-page PDF of his proposal. That document begins with a one-page executive summary that lays out the company's goal as concerns client experience. Subsequent information presents in bullet-point form everything that Jones and his crew will do to the property. Homeowners may scratch their heads when Jones talks about replacing soffit and fascia, but “professionals are detailed,” Jones says. “If you hired an architect, you'd expect detailed drawings of what you want and how it's done. You don't want a brief overview.”

ENDLESS OPTIONS Jason Kersch, of Major Homes, a home improvement company in Bayside, N.Y., sells vinyl jobs. Those jobs need to be “incredibly detailed” to be a convincing renovation game plan for New York consumers. “Right now, people are very detailed about what they want to see,” Kersch says. “They've been online, they know the manufacturers, they'll have six companies listed and they'll say: ‘Tell me about these.'”

To “build the job up” in the minds of his prospects, Kersch photographs homes and supplies owners with computer-generated images of what the house might look like with different colors, textures, styles, and trim. That way owners can “figure out exactly how they want it to look and not risk doing it and hating it.”

VIDEO UPLOAD Along with his PDF proposal, Jones includes a link to a video, posted on YouTube, typically five or six minutes in length. In the video, Jones walks the house and describes how the job will be installed, including resolving problem situations. If Tulsa Renews earns that business, the video is updated daily by crew leaders from their smartphones so that customers know what's been accomplished on their fiber-cement siding project.

Providing abundant job details at the proposal stage signals that contractors will communicate throughout, and was recently key to Jones landing a $20,000-plus job. “I want them to know that I care about the house,” he says, “and how they feel about it, and that if they have concerns, those will be taken care of.”