In the snow removal industry, a scope of work is a document that outlines the parameters required for snow and ice management.

Most property or facility managers have some version of a scope of work, indicating the proper care and maintenance of their property. A complete scope of work is important because it creates a uniform plan that everyone involved in the snow removal process (manager, tenants/employees, vendors, etc.) can understand.

What is a scope of work? We outline some of the key components it includes below.

What to Include in your Scope of Work

At minimum, a Scope of Work should define:

  • Service Priorities – Front sidewalks, drive lanes, etc.
  • Service Triggers – Will service only begin when 2 inches of snow have accumulated?
  • Response and Service Completion Times –For hospitals and other highly used properties, you may require a response time of no more than 1 hour, for instance
  • Piling and/or hauling requirements – Are there certain areas of a lot that CANNOT have snow piled? Do you want to pay extra to have the snow hauled?
  • Equipment Requirements – Are there any restrictions or requirements for the equipment that is used to service your property?
  • Materials Specifications – Do you want to use liquid deicers as a pre-treatment? If you have a more frequently accessed property, you may want to use product with greater efficacy, like magnesium chloride rather than plain rock salt.
  • Supervision and Communication Guidelines
  • Documentation and Invoicing Guidelines – Will the company provide a breakdown of services performed in their production and billing report? What about a timeline of the weather event as your property was serviced?


As you can see, a Scope of Work is a comprehensive outline of everything regarding the treatment and maintenance of your property. As it pertains to snow removal, there are many factors to include and consider. Professional contractors will be able to ask the right questions and suggest reasonable additions to the Scope of Work if it is new to the property manager.

Why you need a Scope of Work

There are 4 major reasons you should have a scope of work for your snow removal services.

1. It provides a format for bids to be compared directly – which means you can actually bid apples to apples. Trying to calculate an hourly bid against a per occurrence bid is difficult enough, but finding out after you hire the “best bid” that the vendor is adding service costs because they didn’t know the specifics of the job beforehand is a property manager’s worst nightmare.

2. A Scope of Work plan identifies a level of expected success for all involved. Not only will your snow removal vendor know exactly what you expect, so will your employees and/or tenants. If everyone on the property is aware of the expectations, you will reduce your risk of slip and falls or accidents. For example, if everyone knows you have a 2″ trigger, and the snow has only reached 1″ in depth, you won’t receive calls from employees or tenants complaining that the plow truck hasn’t been there.

3. It provides a framework for holding the vendor accountable. The more details outlined in the scope of work, the less likely the vendor can claim they weren’t responsible for it.

4. A complete scope of work forces the property or facility manager to think through all possible issues ahead of time so that everything runs smoothly during an actual snowstorm.

Having a scope of work completed before the season starts is not only going to mean a smoother ride for you once winter weather hits, it also means you can start comparing your bids across the board. You’ll know what to expect from your service provider and they’ll know how to completely and effectively service your property. Don’t put this off another minute. Get everyone on the same page this season by completing your scope of work today.

If you have a scope of work and would like to request a bid from True North Outdoor for snow and ice management on your property, contact us here.

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