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  1. #1
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    As the subject implies:

    Anybody using this to get work? Good/ bad stories? I looked into them last year through an ad in a trade mag. Looked really interesting, but they required a subscription fee (forget the amount now, but I couldn't justify it) Now I see that they are offering a free trial.

    Mark

  2. #2
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    G’day Mark.

    This topic comes up here often enough. If you type mfgquote into the search function, theres about 6 threads across the forum regarding it.

    Heres the most recent.

    http://www.practicalmachinist.com/ub...=007116#000000

    Heres a good one from another forum I frequent. It includes some input from the founder and director of Mfgquote.
    http://www.mmsonline.com/dp/forums/f...id=110&pub=MMS

    Regards. Phil.

  3. #3
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    Chevy,
    I have used it as a buyer once. It worked great!
    I got the parts I was subcontracting out, and they met tolerance.
    I sold them for a nice mark-up.

    Now as a shop owner, I would never give them my money to be on the bidders list.
    I have read too many complaints about it. I even spoke with the owner of MFGQUOTE once with regards to his site. He told me the best stradgedy
    for using his site was to bid LOW! That might get your foot in the door with a new customer. But what I know of it, even if you get on, they (customer) will still go out for bids on the next order/ part.
    It is a 3-4K crap shoot, where pennies can make the difference.
    My .02
    Doug.

    Ps besides all the info here, look at mmsonline.com go to the forums section, and look under general metalworking. There this topic has been discussed many many times.

  4. #4
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    Thanks Phil and Doug.

    My apologies. I keep forgetting to try "search" first. I'll learn. [img]smile.gif[/img] I was just kind of curious. I've gotten too busy myself to need the extra work, but maybe in the future. Glad to hear you had a good experience with them Doug. It was mmsonline that I first learned about it last year. I'm sure that as with everything, there are pitfalls to be wary of. Thanks for the replies!

    Mark

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    Mfgquote is a bigtime ripoff. All you get is tha same buyers over and over. And they're all looking for a deal. Most of the work is cheap **** and it goes overseas to the Chinks

  6. #6
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    Mfgquote................?
    The website should be MMO.com. MickeyMouseOutfit
    Their reps can never get anything straight.
    If you do happen to win a job (after you have given it away for free) try to get paid!!!!!!!!!
    There are nothing but scammers and home hobby shops who are buyers on there site.

  7. #7
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    MfgQuote...........?
    After you sign up and spend a small fortune and spend weeks to wait to see if your quote was good, then you get to see how cheap you have to do parts for.
    MfgQuote is BAD FOR AMERICA............!
    They should call it MfgChina.com

  8. #8
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    i surfed thier site a few times ,and my gut instinct told me not to sign up.

  9. #9
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    Stay far away from them.

  10. #10
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    I certainly respect anyone's right to post their opinion and experience regarding http://www.MFG.com or any topic for that matter. I would be remiss though if I did not make a few points on our behalf:

    1) Billions of dollars worth of manufacturing services have been successfully sourced online at MFG.com helping companies bring products to market cost effectively and suppliers grow their business by connecting with the right customers at the right moment in time. See for yourself http://www.mfgquote.com/suppliers_success_stories.cfm

    2) As you will note from our home page http://www.MFG.com or from hopefully trying our system, we operate a very transparent marketplace. We show real-time stats like the average number of quotes (typically around 5) per RFQ, market volume of each category and online awards as they happen. No other service can offer this transparency becuase they just don't have the billions of dollars of marketplace transactions to do so.

    3) Before a supplier quotes on an RFQ, they know exactly how many other quotes have been submitted by other suppliers. This feature in and of itself serves to naturally limit to number of quotes per RFQ.

    4) Our system is global. We have operations in the U.S., Europe and Asia with over 100,000 buyers and suppliers members using our service from virtually every country. We have RFQs from all over the world on the system everyday. The Internet and the manufacturing economy are both global and we must be as well.

    We have been operating and continually perfecting the marketplace since early 2000. We are working very hard to add value and bring efficiency to the manufacturing industry that we are extremely passionate about.

    I would encourage you to register for free, give it a try for yourself and form your own opinion.

    Thanks for your support.

    Mitch Free
    Founder / CEO
    http://www.MFG.com

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    Mitch, it would help your case if your post didn't sound so much like an advertisement complete with sneaking the URL in at every opportunity. :rolleyes:

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    I'm glad you said something Don. I wanted to, but bit my tongue. Something about "2 years later"? I won't get into the discussions I've had with his "esteemed associates" just to get off the freakin mailing list (which I think I finally succeeded in doing).

    Mark

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    Don,

    I honestly wasn't trying to be promotional, sorry it came off that way. I was attempting to respond to the previous posts. I care deeply about delivering value to our customers and being a good citizen of the global manufacturing community.

    Yes, I'm passionate to a fault and like any CEO who is worth his salt, I love hearing the comments and perceptions of our members and prospective members, the good, the bad and mis-conceptions. Monitoring great forums like this is how we know what the market does and doesn't like as well as how our messaging can be improved.

    I read all the comments and weigh them as to their validity and we get some real gems from them. But I must always keep in mind the famous quote from Henry Ford "If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they'd have asked for a faster horse."

    When you are doing something as innovative and industry changing as we are at www.MFG.com there will be controversy and discussion. We are fine with that and encourage it.


    Thanks for this forum, you are providing a great service to the manufacturing community.

    Mitch

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    I subscribed to MFGQuote for 2 years. In my case, it was an unbelievable waste of money, and more importantly, time.

    The majority of the jobs I bid on were never awarded. They were never even declined. The "buyer" just vanished, never to return.

    Almost without fail, the jobs that were awarded went for less than the cost of material. I buy several tons of aluminum per month, and saw cut it in house, so I'm in a very low price bracket for raw materials. Unfortunately, not as low as China.

    I remember when I first signed up I was practically foaming at the mouth looking at all of these leads and opportunities. After spending countless hours quoting jobs and attempting to contact "buyers," the fantasy slowly degraded until it was just a $350/month thorn in my side.

    My advice for anybody who's considering using MFGQuote is:

    DO NOT sign a 12 month contract up front. Try to get a 1 or 2 month demo so you can feel it out. If you get enough work to at least pay for your subscription, perhaps it's worth it. All it did for me was give me a list of leads I do not want to do business with.

  15. #15
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    Hi Joe,

    You do bring up a few interesting points that I would like to address if I may.

    1) You stated that the majority of RFQs you quoted were never awarded. When I started the company in 2000 hardly any were awarded online and it’s been a steady climb from there. Today nearly 70% are awarded online and that increases a little every month. We are very transparent and don't hide anything so you can see for yourself how we have grown online awards over time just click the following link and look at the most recent full month vs. a month in the past. The growth in RFQs awarded online is there for the world to see. http://www.mfgquote.com/suppliers_success_stories.cfm

    How did we fix it? We added a team of engineers and sourcing specialist that manually check and release every RFQ. Part of the quality check requires that someone from my staff speak with the buyer and verify his intention to award the RFQ. We explain to them about all the effort required for suppliers to produce quotes and that they are getting to use the system for free because they are expected to award to the member suppliers. The buyer must confirm to us that they understand and do intend to award the RFQ before it ever gets released to the marketplace. We probably have a thousand or so RFQs a month that never get released because the buyer told us he was just price shopping. And after every RFQ closes if the buyer has not awarded it within a few days, we begin calling them to get resolution. It is an expensive human intensive process, but that’s what it takes to make sure our supplier members get value.

    Further, as you probably know, we have a rating system whereas buyers and suppliers rate each other. But we also show suppliers lots of stats about the buyer so you can decide if you want to invest time in preparing a quote for them. We show you their contact information, their online award percentage, the geographic award pattern (local, nationwide, overseas, etc) and we show you their award pattern graph which tells you for each RFQ they have awarded whether they awarded to the low quote, the high quote or somewhere in between. You know a lot about the buyer before you ever decide to quote.

    All the above is what we had to learn and invest lots of money in over the years to make the marketplace work. So Joe, depending on when you were a member, we may deserve some of your wrath. I’d love the opportunity to let you try the system again today, at no charge of course and report your experience back here on the forum.

    2) You said that you thought jobs go for less than the material. I certainly don’t think that is true. I can’t imagine why anyone would quote a job below cost unless it was just a customer acquisition strategy. It wouldn’t be a very sustainable strategy, because if it were the cheap price that got someone a customer, the minute you tried to raise prices the customer would most likely move onto the next guy trying to buy his business. You don’t want customers like that anyway. Again, we make the “award pattern” very transparent on each buyer, so if you see that a buyer consistently goes for the lowest quote, just move on. The good thing is at least on MFG.com you know it, in the offline world you have no clue as to what a buyer’s award pattern and habits are.

    I would like to point out that we don’t, can’t and will not attempt to control pricing. Market pricing for precision machining is determined by what you and your peers quote and do the work for. If everyone quoted based on a $200 per hour shop rate that is what buyers would have to pay. Again, we facilitate the market the shops establish market pricing when they quote. I’m not sure why some are more competitive than others. And it’s not because they are in China…. A tiny fraction of our members are from China and they are primarily suppliers for processes that are hard for buyers to source in the U.S. We are transparent on that as well, clicking the link above will show you exactly how many and which RFQs were awarded to suppliers in China or elsewhere for that matter. It’s also important to note that we have buyer members in Europe, throughout Asia and intra-China who use www.MFG.com as well. So the small percentage of supplier members in China using our system are not just there for U.S. buyers.

    We also own www.sourcingparts.com in Europe which feeds billions of dollars worth of European RFQs into the marketplace.

    3. You said you would not recommend anyone signing a one year agreement. We have made a very conscious decision related to our annual membership policy. We would rather have a smaller number of members in for a year than thousands coming and going for a month or two at a time. It makes for a better quality marketplace, it ensures that only more successful shops that can afford the fee and make the commitment become members. Because we have a stable base of high quality suppliers, buyers keep coming back time and time again. Buyers constantly tell us the thing they love most about MFG.com is the quality of the shops that are in the marketplace responding to their RFQs, they know they can count on them.

    We did try a “by the month” model a few years ago and the quality of suppliers in the marketplace deteriorated rapidly. As such our buyer retention suffered significantly. It was a little too easy for most any shop to join. Heck, with the “by the month” model we had people joining that didn’t even have a shop. They were trying to land a customer and then go start a shop. Those aren’t suppliers our buyer members want. It was a valuable lesson for us. So we decided to go back to the annual membership model.

    If you think about it, our fee for a full year is less that the cost of doing a Job Shop show where you only get leads for two days vs. qualified RFQs for a full year with us. Our members are typically the shops who have and continue to invest in marketing. The exhibit at shows, they advertise in directories and participate in the online marketplace. They are shops run by owners who are good businessmen and women. Unfortunately for me, you are not going to see them here in the forum bragging about all the work they are winning.

    By the way, I highly recommend Job Shop Shows and Amcon Shows as a compliment to any shop’s marketing plan. So buyers like to go to shows, some buyers like to source online. You need to be in both places. Position your shop in the paths a potential customer make take when they are looking for you. In the old days if you placed and ad in the Thomas Register and the Yellow Pages you were good. Today a buyer has many more options and it is a little more complicated and expensive to market machine shop services.

    We do have a free test drive that anyone can signup for online. You can do everything except submit quotes. It just wouldn’t be fair to our paying members to allow people to try the system out for free and quote against those who paid the membership fee.

    Joe obviously had an unpleasant experience with us and as I said above we may well deserve some of his wrath, but I would like to offer Joe the opportunity to try the marketplace again and report back to everyone here about his experience.

    I apologize for the length of this posting and I tried not to make it commercial or an advertisement by sticking to points and facts, but I did want to address to points that Joe raised. I owed that to him for taking the time post earlier and for the investment he made with us previously.

    In case you can’t tell, I obsess over making sure our members get a tremendous return on their investment. We’re not perfect, but we are working very hard to improve everyday and we care deeply about our members and the manufacturing industry.

    Is there an award for the longest posting? [img]smile.gif[/img]

    All the best,
    Mitch

  16. #16
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    Hi Mitch,
    Thank you for the response, and the generous offer. Regretably I'll have to decline your offer for another trial of MFG.com, as we're pretty well backlogged with our current customers. I'm sure there are many other shop owners here who would leap at the chance to take a test drive and report back on their experience.

    I've got a few more questions if you've got the time:

    #1-Was this list http://www.mfgquote.com/profiles/Awa...mber-2006.html a complete list of allRFQs awarded for November?

    #2- How many suppliers currently subscribe to MFG.com?

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    Hi Joe,

    Yes, that is the list of RFQs awarded online as of the 5th of November that can be publicly displayed. About 50 percent of the total RFQs are protected by NDA (non-disclosure agreement) and can’t be displayed publicly. So that list you see today is for 3 business days. To see what a typical full month looks like, just click on the prior month (http://www.mfgquote.com/profiles/Awa...ober-2006.html) . For comparison, go back a few years and look at the list and you’ll get an appreciation for the growth of the market.

    Also to get a true picture you have to include the online awards from our marketplace in Europe (those also flow to our MFG.com members) http://www.sourcingparts.com/corpora...er/tab=2#table you will notice that many shops in America are winning business from Europe. The Euro and British Pound are so strong, some buyers in Europe consider America a pseudo low cost country that can produce high quality. There is a benefit to our weak dollar [img]smile.gif[/img] . Just watch out when you travel to Europe (ouch).

    In March we’ll have our European and North American marketplace properly merged and it will be easier to decipher all this. Supporting 10 languages and as many currencies in times zones that span the 24 hour clock is a complicated and expensive business….but that’s my challenge to deal with.

    As for the number of supplier members, we have 2,312 today (Nov. 5th 2006) on 4 continents covering approximately 300 manufacturing processes ranging from machining to molding to circuit boards to wire harness fabrication etc. etc.

    All the best,
    Mitch

  18. #18
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    It's possible the problem here is the size of the shop using the service. Pretty though for the 1-2 man shop to afford the fee, and also to respond to enough of the quotes to make it pay for itself.

    I know of a local shop that's been using First Index (Mitch's competition I guess) for about 6-7 years, and they are reportedly doing very well with it. It's about a 25 man shop with 3 full time sales people handling the quoting.

    I wish there was some way this type of service could be made more affordable to the small shop, who can only deal with a limited number of quotes
    and orders per week.....

    dan k

  19. #19
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    You bring up an excellent point and I think you are right on target. Shops that have gotten to a decent size did so because they were good at sales, marketing, relationship building, finance, etc. Those shops do really well on our service because they are run by owners who are good business people.

    We do have 1-2 man shops that do well also, but they are typically run by someone who is not just good at making parts, but also good at marketing their shop.

    Unfortunately, some people start a shop just because they can make beautiful parts fast. The challenge is that they have little business or sales experience and growing a successful shop is about more than making parts.

    These guys are further enabled by the "no money down, no payments for six months" machine promotions. It allows a a good machinist to get a machine and become a shop owner way too easy. It allows people to open a shop that had no business doing so and about 9 months later they are filing for bankruptcy.

    I actually wrote an article on the subject about a year ago.
    http://www.productionmachining.com/c.../1005free.html

    And we also built a free business plan template for anyone thinking about starting a shop or who has one and wants to build a business plan.
    It is available for download at http://www.mfg.com/bizplan/

  20. #20
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    I do NOT disagree with ANYthing you said.
    Although.....some here will I'm sure... [img]tongue.gif[/img]

    dk


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