Over the years we have bid a lot of projects both privately and publicly. We have also documented our process to avoid 'reinventing the wheel'. The following describes the steps in our process. Several of the documents or forms that we use are downloadable by clicking their name. Perhaps this will be helpful to you. Questions? Use the Comments to ask...
See PREPARING TO BID A PROJECT for preliminary tasks.
You have your project 'on the street'. Now what do you need to do?
It is extremely rare to go through a bidding period without at least one addendum. It isn't unheard of to issue some of the documents by addendum. That isn't recommended because coordination and completeness of the documents can become awkward. Your goal is to give the bidders a clear idea of what is required of them. Addenda invariably get ignored and that causes other problems for everyone.
The last addendum must be received at least 2-3 days before bid due date or you should postpone the due date in the addendum. The timing and method of delivery of any addendum is often covered in the (Owner provided!) Bidding Documents, so make sure you comply.
PREPARATION FOR THE BID OPENING (PUBLIC)
BID OPENING PROCEDURES (PUBLIC)
PREPARATION FOR THE BID OPENING (PRIVATE)
See the description of the preparation for a public bid opening above. A private opening would take place in the architect's or the client's office and is informal. The same process is followed without an audience of bidders.
BID OPENING PROCEDURES (PRIVATE)
See the description of the Bid Opening Procedures for a public bid opening above. A private opening is as informal as you want to make it, but most of the steps still apply. Since the bidders are not present, you can expect a flurry of inquiries within an hour or so of the bids being due. Decide with your client what results and when the results will be disclosed. Even if it isn't the actual results, I suggest that you make the plan for disclosure available if you haven't done so yet.
POST BID ACTIVITIES
Once the Owner/Contractor agreement is signed or a Notice To Proceed is issued, you are ready to start the Construction Administration phase of the project.