Vendor tips for Agency Marketplace

Vendor Tips: Just a few quick notes from the Housing Agency Marketplace Support Center.

Vendor Marketplace

The Vendor Marketplace area, located on the Buyers side, allows the buyer to sort by Commodity or Service codes along with State, Region, and MWBE Status or any combination. Upgraded vendors are listed by commodity starting with Platinum and descending to dedicated service levels.
This permits the buyer to contact the vendors by direct email when they only require verbal, or written bids, not placing the solicitation on the marketplace.

Manage Users – Have more than one Salesperson receiving Solicitations

We advise you to have more than one salesperson within your marketplace to assure that your company does not lose its contact ability from within the marketplace. To add more salespeople, site administrators just need to login and click on “manage users” on the left-hand side menu and follow the instructions, it will take less than 2 minutes to add someone.

General Contractor / Sub Contractor / Suppler – Other

One part of this email pertains to a new feature that will benefit Agencies and Vendors in understanding potential relationships between Vendors on certain types of solicitations.

You will notice changes at the bottom of each QSP/IFB Online Solicitation – Construction Solicitations. The area of “Will Bid”, “Might Bid” has some changes. If you select either of these responses, you will be required to select one of the fields provide from a drop-down box.

The choices will be General Contractor – Sub Contractor – Supplier – Other.

Important Vendor Tips: If you plan on bidding as a General Contractor you would select General Contractor, and then hit the appropriate gray box to submit. If hoping to be a Sub Contractor, then select Sub Contractor and click on the appropriate gray box to submit. If you will just be a supplier of goods for the solicitation, select Supplier and click on the appropriate gray box. If anyone of the three fields above doesn’t fit your company, select other and click on the appropriate gray box.

Finally, if you have decided not to bid, be sure and click on the No Bid gray box so you will not receive any further communication from the buyer on this solicitation.

This information you select about your possible intentions will carry forward to the Bidders Lists which agencies may make available depending on the solicitation type. The bidders list will show up towards the bottom of the page on the original solicitation.

This enhancement will help General Contractors, Sub Contractors, and Suppliers get together more easily when responding to our agency member’s solicitations. The agency will also be able to see from their side of the software your possible intentions.

Online Response Clarification:

When responding electronically to any online solicitation, make sure you wait until you have all your pricing ready to input. If you stop and start it may not save your pricing in the correct order. You will be given the chance to review your response prior to submitting, but on solicitations with multiple lots or line items, you may get timed out. If any questions, please contact customer support for further clarification.

Review your Commodity / Service codes:

Make sure to login and review your commodity / service codes. If you do not have your codes selected, you may be losing potential business. We add additional codes on a quarterly basis. They may apply to your company.

Make sure to have one of the latest Versions of Microsoft Office:

Sometimes buyers will attach documents in the latest version of Microsoft Office. If you are not able to open, email the buyer and ask them to put out an addendum in an earlier version of Microsoft Office.

Spam Filter Notice:

Make sure that you are set up to receive email notifications from the following:
Spam filters can stop emails coming to you from the Housing Agency Marketplace. You need to make sure you accept emails from the above domain name.

Full Mailbox:

You may also not be receiving bid notifications because your mailbox is full, please make sure you have enough space to receive the emails, or you may miss an opportunity.

Vendor Courtesy Tip!!!!

After you view any bid information, do not forget to provide your intentions of bidding to the buyer. They like to get that information, i.e. No Bid, Might Bid, or Will Bid. It helps the buyer track the bid process.

Email Reminders of Upcoming Bid Closing Dates:

You are eligible to receive notification emails of “Upcoming Bid Closing Dates” issued by our Housing Agency Clients.

To enable this function, you must register in the Marketplace to download the solicitation. Go to the bottom of the page and select “Respond Will Bid”, or “Will Bid” depending upon the type of solicitation.

Failing to select the appropriate “Respond Will Bid Box”, (which notifies the agency your plans to respond) will disable notifications via email.

Bid Notification reminders are sent everyday beginning 3 days prior to “bid due date” up to the due date.

The reminder emails will cease by:
Submitting your pricing or documents, or
Changing the Will Respond / Will Bid to another Option
Utilizing this software feature provides Housing Agencies and indication of what Vendors have a strong interest in the solicitation.

Other odds and Ends to be aware of:

If you change your email, you will need to change it within the marketplace, as we are not allowed to change your company information. We can provide you with directions via phone if necessary.

The software does not always forward communications to Smart Phones, (blackberry / I phone, etc.) so be sure to check your email via computer instead of cell phones.

It is always good to login once a week, just to check and make sure that you didn’t miss any opportunities because of the above issues.

We are always looking for suggestions as to how to make the software more user friendly. If you have any suggestions, please email me at support with your suggestions and be sure to title the subject line

Why do Buyers expand bids?

This is very important vendor tips because they feel like they don’t have enough vendors emailed to get their required number of bidders. Once they feel like they have enough vendors initially emailed the solicitation, they won’t expand the outreach. Bottom line is you can’t depend on getting complimentary notices from the marketplace on every solicitation.

Why do Wholesalers / Manufacturers monitor solicitations?

Short answer, to make sure their products are bid.
When it comes to single products, manufacturers work with their local distributor, or manufacturers rep (if they don’t bid direct) to ensure their products are solicited. For multiple products such as construction solicitations, the distributor/rep contacts the General Contractor.
The solicitation needs to be reviewed to see if their products are included.

How to create your own lead list!

You can create your own lead list from the specific buyer’s email / contact information.
First, email and notify the buyer you are on the marketplace.
Next, create an email and ask the buyer to include you in any solicitations they may do off the marketplace.
Finally, most vendors may have the Agencies contact information, but not the specific buyer who does the purchasing. (Be sure not to email to often, or they will send you to their spam list)

Housing Agency Vendor Suggestions.

And finally, if you would like to make a comment or have a question, it would be greatly appreciated. We place buyer/supplier comments on our website in order to help others. If you are looking for more vendor tips, please contact us:

Client Services
International eProcurement, LLC
Dba the Housing Agency Marketplace
838 East High Street, #252, Lexington, KY 40502
Phone – 866-526-9266