Download this RFP here.
The Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce (Quad Cities Chamber) is seeking statements of qualifications and proposals from CONSULTANTS to assist the Quad Cities region in implementing specific activities unique to its defense industry ecosystem.
The Quad Cities Chamber reserves the right to reject any and all proposals and to negotiate changes with any proposer. The Quad Cities Chamber is not liable for any cost incurred by any proposer prior to the execution of a written contract. Nor shall the Quad Cities Chamber be liable for any costs incurred by the selected CONSULTANT that are not specified in a written and signed contract.
The Quad Cities Chamber is an equal employment opportunity employer and provider of services.
The Defense Industry Adjustment Plan received funding through the Department of Defense Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA). The University of Illinois (U of I) is the primary grant operator and fiscal agent for the entire grant. U of I personnel will provide overall project oversight and coordination of statewide communications. The Quad Cities Chamber is the grant operator and fiscal agent responsible for the sub-award listed below, while also working with U of I personnel on project coordination, reporting, and oversight. The DIA OEA initiative will work with the structure and processes of the Quad Cites Manufacturing Innovation Hub to interact with local manufacturing stakeholders, and ultimately to execute the DoD diversification strategy. The Diversification strategy will be built upon current initiatives to improve the operational excellence, the technical competence and a thorough understanding of the current capabilities of the regional supply chain.
Quad Cities Communication activities:
- Development of a communications strategy to be executed over the course of two years
- Work to tie together multiply deliverables and activities into a coherent message consistent with the mission of the OEA DIA Project with the Quad Cities Manufacturing Innovation Hub to develop and initiate a manufacturing diversification and growth strategy for the region
- Develop a timeline and communications objectives for key project milestones
- Develop themes with graphic representation of project
· Development of a bi-weekly e-newsletter to a targeted list of manufacturers. Content will be a combination of original and curated content.
· Development of up to four four-page brochures
· Development of five videos approximately 3 minutes in length which include at least 1-2 speakers filmed on location and gathering of b-roll.
· Update Website for Quad Cities Chamber DIA OEA Project with Quad Cites Manufacturing Innovation Hub to reflect messaging and mission of OEA DIA QC Hub strategy and update messaging of strategies
· Create a social media strategy and implementation plan to support the implementation phase of the project
· Create one-page line card documents up to 8 one pagers describing elements of project for introductory pieces for hand outs
C. CLIENTS' BACKGROUND
The Quad Cities is a bi-state region with a 530,000 laborshed located in eastern Iowa and western Illinois along the Mississippi River. The region includes the Davenport-Moline-Rock Island Combined Statistical Area (CSA), which includes the Davenport-Moline-Rock Island Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), Muscatine Micropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), and Clinton Micropolitan Statistical Area. The two largest counties within the CSA are Scott County, IA, and Rock Island County, IL, with 165,224 residing in Scott County, Iowa and 147,546 residing in Rock Island County, IL.
Within this region the Quad Cities Chamber works to strengthen and enhance the business environment, represent the interests of its members and foster balanced growth. The Chamber advances the Quad Cities community by focusing resources on economic, community, and workforce development.
The proposed project area will focus on the Quad Cities region described here and also include the surrounding counties of Jackson and Cedar in Iowa; and Knox and Whiteside in Illinois. Selected activities of this grant may extend beyond this area.
The consultant will work closely with Julie Forsythe, Vice President of Entrepreneurship and Innovation and Curt Burnett, Executive Director of the Quad Cites Manufacturing Innovation Hub on content and strategy. The consultant will also work closely with Vicky Miller, Director of Defense Industry Diversification Project for compliance and content accuracy specific to the grant requirements. The consultant will also work closely with Jillian McCleary, Vice President of Communications to coordinate message and delivery for consistency with ongoing Chamber Communications and branding.
Specific to this proposal, Vicky Miller will be the Project Director responsible for the full time direction and executive management of the Quad Cities activities and provide oversight to the administration and execution of the proposal to meet grant requirements.
D. CONTENT OF PROPOSALS
Responding parties must include the elements described below within a single, bound or stapled document of no more than 25 pages. Six (6) copies of the proposal shall be delivered to the indicated address.
I. Transmittal Letter
Provide a brief letter of transmittal stating the proposing firm’s background and interest in the project. The letter must include a DUNS number and contact information for the company’s chief executive and its proposed project manager.
II. Statement of Qualifications
This narrative must detail how the CONSULTANT and any subcontracted parties are exceptionally qualified to provide the services requested herein. At a minimum the section must contain:
· Company profile,
· Vitae of the project manager and key team members,
· Description of similar projects completed by the CONSULTANT,
· Three client references from similar projects successfully completed in the last five years,
· Name and location of subcontracting firms (if any) that will be used by the CONSULTANT, and the approximate percentage and type of work that would be performed by each subcontracted firm,
· Ability to integrate this project into the CONSULTANT’S present workload.
· Project team’s knowledge of the defense industry, manufacturing, innovation, and economic development planning,
III. Project Approach
The proposal shall include a description of the CONSULTANT’S proposed means of completing each of the following tasks. A detailed scope of services will be negotiated at the time of contract development with the selected consultant. Proposing CONSULTANTS should clearly state how they would successfully accomplish each task below within budget.
Task 1: Communications Strategy
Put together an overall communications strategy including stakeholder analysis, key themes, overall structure and timeline. Strategy should tie all the components of the DIA OEA QC Hub project into a story line that highlights the benefits that the regional manufacturing stakeholders understand and value.
Task 2: Creation of Collateral
Create brochures and videos to support the messaging. Recommend additional collateral to support the implementation phase of the project. Coordinate content with the state wide project and ongoing Chamber communications.
Task 3: Social Media and Website
Update the DIA OEA Quad Cites Manufacturing Innovation Hub Chamber website to reflect communication strategy and including a bi-weekly e-newsletter. Place together a social media strategy that can be updated by chamber that is sustainable.
IV. Project Schedule & Cost
The proposal shall reference any recommended revisions to the budget and project schedule. Once a CONSULTANT has been selected, the CLIENT will negotiate a final scope of services, schedule and cost.
The CONSULTANT will be required to sign a confidentiality statement in agreement that all information shared with any of its resources (staff, volunteers, consultants and or sub-contractors) will be held in the strictest of confidence. No information on any of the businesses in this region gathered by the CONSULTANT from this contract will be used to the commercial advantage of any staff member consultant, sub-contractor, or other resource to the benefit of any third party.
¨ Submittal Deadline: August 18, 2016 Postmarked before 12:00pm Central Time
¨ Submittal Location: Quad Cities Chamber
1601 River Drive, Suite 310
Moline, IL 61265
¨ Question Deadline: August 10, 2016 submitted no later than 12:00pm CT
¨ Question Contact: Questions must be submitted in writing or email to:
Vicky Miller, Director
Defense Industry Economic Diversification Project
Quad Cities Chamber
1601 River Drive, Suite 310
Moline, IL 61265
¨ Question Responses: Posted on www.quadcitieschamber.com
¨ Submittal Copies: Six (6) copies are required with submission in hard copies no later than 12:00pm Central time on August 18, 2016
F. EVALUATION CRITERIA
A review of qualifying proposals will identify potential CONSULTANTS that most closely meet the needs of the Quad Cities Chamber. Upon review of the proposals, the three highest ranked proposers may be contacted to make a presentation to the Quad Cities Chamber to discuss their qualifications and approach to completing the project.
The Quad Cities Chamber will evaluate all proposals. Factors to be considered by the Quad Cities Chamber will include but may not be limited to the following:
· Qualifications, reputation and experience of the proposing firm as whole,
· Qualifications and experience of the project manager,
· Qualifications and experience of the project team,
· Project team’s overall ability to complete the prescribed tasks,
· Partnerships with local contractors, consultants, or service providers,
· Ability to complete the project by November 30, 2016
· Project Schedule and cost, and
· Evaluation of references.
G. PROPOSED EVALUATION SCHEDULE
Solicitation for Proposals/Qualifications: July 18, 2016
Proposals/Qualifications Due: August 18, 2016
Review/Interviews: Week of August 22, 2016
CONSULTANT Selection: End of August 2016
Questions & Answers: Below are answers to questions submitted.
Q: Who is/are the target audience(s) for these communication initiatives?
A: The Quad City Region Target Defense Industries & Manufacturing Sectors along with Stakeholders.
Q: On page 2, and again under Task 3 on page 4, the RFP references updating the DIA OEA Manufacturing Innovation Hub website – is this referencing the Hub portion of the Chamber website, http://www.quadcitieschamber.com/locate-start-grow/grow/manufacturing-innovation-hub , or is there another, separate site or URL being referenced here? If separate, can you please provide?
A: Updating existing QC Hub web site
Q: “Budget” is referenced a couple times on page 4 – is there a proposed budget for this project and if so, is that number available?
A: Yes budgets established but will not be disclosed
Q: Budget - Is there a budget threshold that the proposal needs to stay within? (i.e. not to exceed)
A: Budget established but amount will not be given out.
Q: Timeline - The proposal notes that the project should be “completed by November 30th, 2016”, yet it notes that the “communications strategy is to be executed over the course of two years”. Can you clarify which elements of the scope are to be completed by November 30th?
A: November is the end of our two year project. The Grant was delayed so we have a bit of flexibility if project not finished completely on that date. But, we will be looking for someone who will complete by November 2016.
Q: Original Content - The RFP notes that the bi-weekly newsletter will use a combination of original and curated content. Does the RFP require the CONSULTANT to provide ongoing copywriting services over the course of the two-year execution or does original content need to be developed in advance (by November 30th)? Alternatively, will this original content be created by the DIA QCC team?
A: Contractor will be in charge of bi weekly newsletter-QC Hub will support with some updates for insertion to the newsletter.
Q: Audiences/Stakeholders - What audiences/stakeholders will the communication strategy and associated elements need to address?
A: QC Region-Defense Industry & Manufacturing /Sectors
Q: Success Measures - Have success metrics been defined for the project? If so, please provide the pre-defined measures of success. If not, is there a series of broader metrics (i.e. decrease in closures, increase in number of active facilities, increase in jobs, etc.) that you would like to impact/influence?
A: Completion of RFP as stated-project met to the satisfaction of the DIA Team
Q: SEO/PPC - The RFP does not discuss or address Search Engine Optimization or a Pay-Per-Click program to promote the project. Is this something you would like included as an element of the proposal or is this out of scope?
A: Not in RFP
Q: Social Media - Will this solely be maintained following November 30th by the DIA and QCC staff or does support and implementation time for this need to be included in the proposal past November 30th?
A: No not in grant/RFP
Q: Ongoing Support - Should the proposal include time/resource recommendations for ongoing support of the implementation phase of the project, following November 30th?
A: No- not in the RFP
Q: Stakeholder Analysis - Please clarify the goals/deliverables of the Stakeholder Analysis. Is the team seeking to simply define an influencer map or are there additional deliverables needed as part of the scope?
A: Scope listed on RFP
Q: Local Contractors/Consultants - Is there a preference for the CONSULTANT to utilize local, third-party contractors for elements of the project, or is there a preference to have the CONSULTANT utilize only in-house resources for complete implementation?
A: No preference
Q: Advertising - Will additional advertising (i.e. print, outdoor, etc.) recommendations need to be included in the proposal? If so, should production/design costs be included? If so, will placement costs be sourced separate from the RFP by the DIA QCC?
A: All intent -All proposals need inclusion of all types of media use and cost for each