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SharpeSoft IPM Fast Trax 2/8: Easy Steps for Entering Bids and Awarding Contracts

Scroll down for 3 helpful videos!

There are two bid results windows. The Bid Opening window is used to quickly enter the overall

bid results for each bidding vendor, and the Project Bid Results window is a full bid tabulation.

Information entered in one window is automatically copied to any corresponding columns in the other.

Complete the Bid Opening

Go to: Projects menu > Bid Opening

In the Bid Opening window, enter all vendors who have submitted bids. Click Insert in the lower left corner and the Select a Vendor window will open. To enter a single vendor, double click on the one you want. To select multiple vendors, hold down the Ctrl key and click on each vendor. This highlights and marks your selections. Once you have marked all of the vendors you want, click Select, or press Enter. All of the marked vendors will now be entered in the Bid Opening window.

  • If the bidder you are looking for is not in the list, click Insert and the Insert Vendor window will open. Enter the bidder’s details in that window and then click OK. The new vendor will be added to the select window. You can then double click (or mark) the new vendor to add them to the Bid Opening as described.

Once you have added all of your vendors, click in the Total Bid column for the first vendor, type

in their total bid amount, and press Enter. Next, double-click in the Bidder Checklist Status

column for that same vendor. The Bidder Checklist Status window will open. This window

lists all of the criteria that a bidder must meet to be considered for the project.

Initially, all requirements will be marked as Failed. However, simply mark any compliant items as ‘Passed’, or click the Pass all Checks button if the bidder has met all requirements. When finished, click OK.

‘Responsive' bidders are those who have satisfactorily completed all mandatory items in the Bidder Checklist window. The Low Responsive bidder is the vendor with the lowest overall bid price and who has completed all of the mandatory checklist items.

Continue to enter the Total Bid price and complete the Bidder Checklist for all vendors following the same procedures discussed above.

As you add your vendors, they are automatically sorted with the lowest responsive bid at the top and the highest bid at the bottom. The lowest bidder will have a check next to their name in the Vendor Name column.

Note that the Difference from Low Price is automatically calculated for each vendor.

Review the Bid Results Window

The Bid Results window lists details of the project bid items in the first four columns from the left, while the right side of the window lists each of the bidders that you entered in the Bid Opening window, with the Unit Price and Total Price for each vendor. The bidder with

the lowest overall total will be listed first. The summary panel at the bottom of the window shows the price breakdown for each vendor.

Enter the Vendor Unit Prices

Double click on a vendor row in the Bid Opening window (or double click in a vendor price column in the Bid Results window) and the Edit Bidder Prices window for that vendor will open.

In the window, all of the project bid items will be listed in blue highlighting, indicating that no pricing has yet been entered. Once you enter the unit price for an item, the blue highlighting will disappear.

Begin by clicking in the Unit Price cell for the first bid item and enter the bidder's price from their proposal. Press Enter. The blue highlighting will disappear and you will be taken to the next bid item in the list. Continue entering unit pricing until all items have the bidder's proposed prices.

After entering the vendors’ unit prices, click OK and you will be returned to the Bid Opening or

Bid Results window. If the calculated total bid amount differs from the submitted total bid

amount, that difference will be highlighted in red (in-line in the bidders list in Bid Opening or in

the summary panel at the bottom of the Bid Results window).

  • If you want to save these unit prices to the Standard Items table, go to the Actions menu and click, Save/Update Standard Item Prices.

  • The Insert/Change Bidder Prices window can be accessed from both the Bid Opening and the Bid Results windows. However, unit prices for all of the bidders can only be viewed side-by-side in the Bid Results window

Enter Listed Subcontractors

If your agency requires bidders to submit their subcontractor names, click on the Listed Subcontractors tab in the Edit Bidder Prices window and continue. Otherwise, skip to STEP 5.

Enter a Subcontractor

In the Listed Subcontractors tab, click Insert. The Select Sub Vendor window will open. Double click on the vendor you want. The window will close and you will be returned to the Edit Bidder Prices window and the vendor you selected will be displayed in the Subcontractor column.

Enter the Subcontractor’s Work Type

Next, you will enter the work type for the subcontractor that you selected. In the Edit Bidder Prices window, double click in the Type of Work column for the subcontractor you just added and then click the drop arrow button that appears. The Subcontractor Work Types window will open.

Double click on the vendor’s work type (paving, electrical, hauling, etc.).The window will close and you will be returned to the Edit Bidder Prices window,where your selected work type will be displayed in the Type of Work column.

Insert the Subcontractor’s Bid Items

In the Listed Items column, you can simply enter the item codes for the items that the subcontractor will be completing or you may choose to select them from the list of bid items. To select them, double click in the Listed Items column on the row for that vendor and the Subcontractor’s Listed Items window will open. In here, you will insert the bid items for this subcontractor (right-click and Insert to select the vendor’s work items) and enter the price or percentage for each item.

Double click on the vendor’s work type (paving, electrical, hauling, etc.). The window will close and you will be returned to the Edit Bidder Prices window,where your selected work type will be

displayed in the Type of Work column.

After entering the details for each bid item, you will be returned to the Edit Bidder Prices

window and the system will automatically compute the Calculated Total and Actual % of Job

based on those prices entered. If the Listed %and the Actual %values differ, the listed

percentage will be highlighted in red).

DBE utilization for listed subcontractors will also be shown. The values displayed in those columns come from the information entered in the Defaults menu >Vendors> DBE tab.

To enter the next subcontractor, click Insert again. When finished entering all of the listed

subcontractors, return to the Project Bid Results window.

Use an Alternate Package

By default, all bid items will be included in the project award. However, you can create any number Alternate Bid Packages with different bid item combinations that reflect alternative award scenarios, which can later be selected for use in the project.

To set up your alternate packages, go to the Project Bid Results window and in the Options menu, click Alternate Packages Toolbox.

To create a new package, click Insert to open a new line in the table. Enter a Description that clearly indicates what will be included or excluded for that package, and then press Enter. Next, double click on the Description. This will open a selection window that lists all project bid items, including both grouped and ungrouped items.

Use the checkboxes to the left of each item to select the ones to be included in the package. Checking a box at the group level will select all of the items in that group. Once you have selected all of the items to be included, click OK and you will be returned to the Alternate Packages window.

You will now see the new package and the total bid price for each bidder, based on the bid items you selected. You can create additional packages as needed to compare bidder prices for each of the packages.

After reviewing the bid results for the alternate packages you have created, you will select your

preferred package by right clicking on the one you want and clicking Set as preferred package.

In the window, a check will appear next to the package you selected.

To include the preferred package in the final contract, go to the Options menu, and click Use

Alternate Package (once you select the package, its name will appear in the menu enclosed in

brackets (as an example:"Use [Base + Alternate #1] Alternate Package"). This package will be

used for the basis of calculations prior to award.

Awarding the Project

Go to: Project menu > Bid Results

To select the project’s Awarded Vendor, click in the column for the vendor that you want and then go to the Actions menu and click Set as Awarded Vendor. (This menu selection will not be available if you do not first click in a vendor column.)

  • You will not be allowed to select a vendor who has a bid status of 'Non-Responsive'. (Non-Responsive bid status means the bidder did not complete all of the mandatory criteria in the Bidder Checklist Status window.)

The awarded vendor is displayed in a panel at the top of the Bid Results window, in the bottom panel of the Bid Opening window, and in the Edit Project window > Contract Administration tab.

  • If you change the awarded vendor in any one of these windows, it will automatically be changed in the other two.


Getting started with SharpeSoft is a breeze. Whether you are looking to create a new job or add one, SharpeSoft has got your back. We have the tools and expertise necessary to help you make it happen without breaking a sweat.

You can continue on to other helpful Fast Trax articles below. To learn more about this particular subject, consult your system Help manual, or just give us a call and we’ll be glad to walk you through it.

IPM Bid Award Contract Alternate Groups Results Vendor Subcontractor Package


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