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Common Questions


What is MarchCentral?
What are my system requirements?
Can users start discussion groups?
Can I use MarchCentral to post or solicit job opportunities in market research?
What is an RFP?
Why do I get a log in prompt to post RFPs?
Why can I not view RFPs?
What is your privacy policy?
What are MarchCentral fees and charges?
Why can I not post new discussion topics or comments as a visitor?
Why do I have to log in to book a research facility?
Can the username and password be shared within our company?
What are your advertising rates and terms for running banner or box ads on your home page?


Vendor Questions


How do we find RFPs?
How do we address questions regarding RFPs?
Can my proposal be seen by other users?
Why do you not disclose who the client or the brand is in the RFP?
How do we invoice the client for a project?
I already have relationships with clients. Why should I go through MarchCentral?
How do I get paid?
How can I ensure that the client will pay?
What if there is a disagreement over the deliverables or other terms?
How does the vendor rating system work?
How do I deliver the final report?

Client Questions


How do you ensure confidentiality of RFPs and projects?
What is the average savings per research project?
How do I cancel a job that has started?
Do you have an escrow service?
Why go through MarchCentral when I already know my vendors?
What are the advantages of posting an RFP on MarchCentral?
How do I post an RFP on MarchCentral?
Is there a fee to post an RFP on MarchCentral?
How do we communicate with a vendor?
Can we engage a vendor on a contractor basis?
How do I select a vendor?
My current vendor is not in your database. Can we still send them the RFP?
Are there any tax implications?
What are MCcredits?
Does MarchCentral guarantee the quality of work?
What is the method of payment for a project?


Facility Questions


How much are your subscription fees?
Can we add offline (e.g. phone) bookings to our calendar in MarchCentral?
We already advertise in other places. Why subscribe to MarchCentral?
How do we clarify bid requests?
We have our own booking system. Why bother with MarchCentral?
Will you provide any traffic metrics on MarchCentral?
 
 
What is MarchCentral? Top
MarchCentral is designed to help clients find and engage market research vendors at competitive prices and appropriate expertise. MarchCentral benefits vendors and facilities by expanding their business potential and helping win new clients. Other visitors can take advantage of the market research discussions, and look up events, conferences, and focus group facilities worldwide.
 
What are my system requirements? Top
Just an Internet connection and a browser like Internet Explorer 7.0, Firefox 2.0, or Safari 3.1. You can also view, manage and post RFPs via a web-enabled phone like the iPhone or Blackberry by navigating to MarchCentral.com
 
Can users start discussion groups? Top
Users need to be registered to start new discussions, or to post comments to existing discussions.
 
Can I use MarchCentral to post or solicit job opportunities in market research? Top
Yes, you may, in a discussion in Forum.
 
What is an RFP? Top
Request For Proposal
 
Why do I get a log in prompt to post RFPs? Top
You need to be a registered client to be able to post RFPs.
 
Why can I not view RFPs? Top
Only registered vendors can view open RFPs. In some cases, clients may post private RFPs that are not open to all vendors.
 
What is your privacy policy? Top
We take privacy and confidentiality very seriously at Marchcentral. Please go through our detailed privacy policy on our home page.
 
What are MarchCentral fees and charges? Top
There are no registration fees for any user on a basic account. Plus accounts have an annual licensing fee of $2499, and Enterprise accounts have an annual fee of $4900.
 
Why can I not post new discussion topics or comments as a visitor? Top
We require visitors to be registered before they can post comments or discussion topics on our Forum.
 
Why do I have to log in to book a research facility? Top
Only registered vendors and clients can request booking via our Facilities Booker.
 
Can the username and password be shared within our company? Top
No, individual logins are required to protect confidentiality. If an employee leaves the company, please advise us immediately, so we may restrict that person’s access to prior projects at your company.
 
What are your advertising rates and terms for running banner or box ads on your home page? Top
Please contact our Sales department at sales@marchcentral.com
 
 

Client Questions

 
How do you ensure confidentiality of RFPs and projects? Top
1. The RFP generator tool will ensure that your brand or company name are not put into the RFP. You will always have the option to review the rfp and make further edits before posting. 2. All RFPs are reviewed by MarchCentral administration before posting to ensure that terms like "market leader" or "only dual-agent" that compromise your identity are not included. 3. A private message board is provided to facilitate communication with each vendor where your identity will be just client (not your username or other identification). 4. Clients can only view their own RFPs and Projects. 5. Finally, for very sensitive projects, you may choose to request proposals only from MyVendors or post an RFP private to those vendors with whom you have a current signed NDA. MarchCentral also uses SSL encryption for login and other important pages.
 
What is the average savings per research project? Top
This will vary by each project but in general, savings of 10-40% is not uncommon both on costs and the time involved. More importantly, you will encourage healthy competition among vendors and be able to choose the right vendor for each particular study.
 
How do I cancel a job that has started? Top
This depends on the terms and conditions agreed to between you and the vendor. We recommend that you communicate this decision immediately to your vendor, and discuss all outstanding issues including expenses already incurred and refunds.
 
Do you have an escrow service? Top
Yes, you may find this useful to manage payments to vendors as well as to insulate your budgets from any corporate budget cuts. We do not charge anything for this service.
 
Why go through MarchCentral when I already know my vendors? Top
MarchCentral offers the following advantages: 1. Vendor proposals on MarchCentral are more competitive and result in more reasonable costs. 2. Vendors on MarchCentral are under pressure to deliver top quality work to ensure good feedback ratings on the system. 3. MarchCentral offers an escrow system to safeguard your project funds until the project is completed to your satisfaction, a useful safeguard when hiring new vendors. 4. MarchCentral provides users with Cost Per Interview (CPI) norms and feedback ratings, based on each project. 5. A rewards program in which 1% of your spend through MarchCentral over $1MM, is credited to you towards future projects, irrespective of which vendors are engaged.
 
What are the advantages of posting an RFP on MarchCentral? Top
Increased cost and time efficiencies by enabling easy comparison of proposals, ability to solicit current, new or specialized vendors, evaluate and read reviews of vendors, and project management tools.
 
How do I post an RFP on MarchCentral? Top
1. Click on Post New RFP from your MyCentral page. 2. Answer a short set of questions on the RFP generator page or copy and paste your own RFP on this page 3. MarchCentral’s RFP generator will generate a confidential RFP that you can further edit and save. 4. You can then choose to submit the RPF to all vendors (public), or only a few vendors (private), or to your preferred vendors (MyVendors). 5. Your RFP will be posted within hours, after a MarchCentral review for confidentiality and appropriateness. You should expect messages and proposals from vendors within hours of posting.
 
Is there a fee to post an RFP on MarchCentral? Top
No, there are no fees to post an RFP on MarchCentral.com
 
How do we communicate with a vendor? Top
We have set up Private Message Boards to enable correspondence with vendors, both at the prebid RFP stage, and also through the live project phase.
 
Can we engage a vendor on a contractor basis? Top
Yes, you can engage a consultant or Project Manager through MarchCentral on a contract basis. Post an RFP for a person rather than a project.
 
How do I select a vendor? Top
We recommend reviewing feedback on each vendor, and reviewing their profile. Furthermore, you can also interview vendors via the Private Message Board, look at their proposal and pricing, and select accordingly.
 
My current vendor is not in your database. Can we still send them the RFP? Top
Request your current vendor to register at MarchCentral and then add the vendor to your MyVendors list to make it easy to send them future RFPs.
 
Are there any tax implications? Top
Per IRS rules, if you reside in the US, and pay more than $600 in a single tax year to an independent US vendor (not incorporated company or business), you need to issue them a 1099. IRS penalties for not submitting a 1099 tax form include penalties and additional withholding. MarchCentral provides links to the forms upon request as a service but does not assume any liability whatsoever. You are advised to consult your legal tax professional for details and questions.
 
What are MCcredits? Top
MCCredits is a client rewards program in which 1% of your spend over $1MM through MarchCentral, is returned to clients, on all projects awarded through MarchCentral, irrespective of which vendors are used on projects. The credits are not redeemable for cash but can be applied towards new projects.
 
Does MarchCentral guarantee the quality of work? Top
MarchCentral enables access to a global talent pool of vendors and a feedback and rating system designed to reward good quality work. In addition, you are encouraged to use the private message boards and other tools to ensure quality deliverables. However, MarchCentral does not supervise any of the actual projects that are contracted through its portal, and cannot guarantee the quality of work from a vendor.
 
What is the method of payment for a project? Top
MarchCentral offers clients two methods of paying for a project: Escrow method 1. The client selects the Escrow option in Project Funding and Setup. 2. The vendor is notified automatically and asked to submit the initial invoice electronically through MarchCentral based on the terms agreed upon with the client. 3. The client sends the project funds to MarchCentral by check or electronically to MarchCentral’s bank for deposit into an escrow account specifically opened for the project at MarchCentral’s bank. 4. The deposit of funds is acknowledged by MarchCentral to both client and vendor and the amount of funds is displayed on the project page. 5. When the client approves the vendor invoice for payment and gives MarchCentral authorization to release funds for the invoice amount, MarchCentral will send the funds to the vendor after deducting the applicable fees and commissions. 6. Any funds left in the escrow account at the conclusion of the project, will be sent back to the the client via check, and the escrow account for this project is then closed out. Direct Invoicing method 1. The client selects the Direct Invoicing option in Project Funding and Setup, opens a Purchase Order (PO) at their (client’s) end, and communicates the PO number to the vendor. 2. The vendor then invoices the client electronically on MarchCentral based on the terms agreed upon with the client.. 3. Both client and vendor are able to view pending, approved/paid invoices from the Invoices tab in My Account in MarchCentral. 4. Based on invoice terms, client pays MarchCentral, the amount of the invoice via check or ACH. 5. MarchCentral receives payment from the client, and in turn, pays the vendor after deducting its fees and commissions, from the monies. 6. If funds are in excess, MarchCentral will apply the balance to the remainder of the project if still open, or return the excess funds back to the client via check and close out the project.
 
 

Vendor Questions

 
How do we find RFPs? Top
After you log in, click on View Open RFPs. All RFPs can be searched by industry sector, and research specialty. In certain cases, a client may have only invited a few companies to bid and those rfps may not be open for bid to all.
 
How do we address questions regarding RFPs? Top
Click on the Questions button in the RFP view page, and it will open a Private Message Board for you to post your question there. The clients are notified when they have questions on their RFP posting, and can address these questions via this board.
 
Can my proposal be seen by other users? Top
No, all proposals for an RFP can only be viewed by the client who posted the RFP.
 
Why do you not disclose who the client or the brand is in the RFP? Top
To protect confidentiality of both the client and their brands/products/services.
 
How do we invoice the client for a project? Top
Payments should be managed via Marchcentral's billing system. Please invoice your client based on the payment terms for your project, as agreed between you and the client.
 
I already have relationships with clients. Why should I go through MarchCentral? Top
Your reach may be limited to your rolodex of contacts, your geographic reach, and just being there at the right time. MarchCentral removes these limitations for you by expanding your business potential. Besides, MarchCentral also offers online tools to make bidding an easier but focused task, and enables you to devote more time to your clients' needs and projects. Finally, some clients are requiring that all their RFPs go through MarchCentral.
 
How do I get paid? Top
Invoice the client electronically through MarchCentral according to the project terms agreed with the client by clicking on the Generate Invoice button on the Project Detail page. The client will then send those payments to MarchCentral per the invoice. Once MarchCentral receives the funds for payment from the client, we will send those funds to you less our commissions and fees (and any bank charges that may apply), according to the payment preference (check, ACH transfer etc) indicated by you. This process may take 2-7 business days depending on the client's method of sending funds to us. You can select and update your payment preference from your MyCentral page at any time.
 
How can I ensure that the client will pay? Top
Ask clarifying questions both at the pre-bid stage and after the proposal is awarded to you, and set your payment terms for the project, including any advance payments. You can also request that the project be funded with an escrow, so you know the funds are there.
 
What if there is a disagreement over the deliverables or other terms? Top
From our experience, and based on other statistics in business services area, disputes are rare. However, if the client and vendors are unable to resolve the issue in a mutually acceptable manner, they will have to seek legal guidance and process. MarchCentral may provide a mediation process in the future, however at the present time, this service is not offered.
 
How does the vendor rating system work? Top
At the conclusion of each project, the client is requested to respond to a very short survey. Client ratings are recorded and averaged to produce the rating score for each vendor. Detailed verbatim comments are also separately provided for greater understanding.
 
How do I deliver the final report? Top
You may choose to attach the report in the Private Message Board for the client, or alternatively email, or mail the final report to the client based on their preference.
 
 

Facility Questions

 
How much are your subscription fees? Top
For facilities, we charge $29.95 per month per location on an annual contract basis. For facilities that have six or more locations, this subscription is discounted to $24.95 per month per location.
 
Can we add offline (e.g. phone) bookings to our calendar in MarchCentral? Top
Absolutely, just click on Add New Booking button in the calendar and follow the instructions.
 
We already advertise in other places. Why subscribe to MarchCentral? Top
MarchCentral is unique in enabling you to have a presence at the center of action where vendors and clients will be meeting virtually on a daily basis, along with tools to bag business right on the portal itself. Plus, you have access to booking tools, bidding, private message board for communication, and generally, a new and critical platform to solicit new business. All this for a subscription fee that is less than a cup of coffee a day!
 
How do we clarify bid requests? Top
You will be able to ask questions and seek clarifications easily with the requester via the Private Message Board that opens up when you click on the Questions button in your Bid.
 
We have our own booking system. Why bother with MarchCentral? Top
You are welcome to use your own booking system, software, calendar, or scheduling book. However, the booking calendar also auto-updates the calendar for the client and vendor, provides you with communication tools, enables online bid requests, and offers many other tools. This reduces your own project management work.
 
Will you provide any traffic metrics on MarchCentral? Top
Yes, we can provide traffic metrics on MarchCentral’s home page, as well as the Facility Booker page at no charge to our subscribed facilities.
 

Tutorials

 
Posting an RFP
Managing projects
Project funding and payment
Submitting Proposals
Getting paid (for vendors)