OnForce Unveils More Dynamic SiteBy Channel Insider Staff | Print
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OnForce's refurbished site brings new visibility into the market for buyers of IT service, including new Web 2.0 capabilities.
OnForce unveiled on Aug. 8 a more dynamic Web site, giving IT service buyers a quicker, deeper view of services and running rates available in their area.
A quick search of running market prices on the home page, keyword location search capability, buyer and provider profiles, reviews, and feedback give buyers and providers greater visibility into the market and the relationships they enter, OnForce executives said.
The experience begins at the OnForce home page, where a module uses Web 2.0 to quickly show visitors the number of providers, median time to acceptance (14 minutes nationwide) and average service price for 12 different service categories in any ZIP code.
Digging deeper, buyers can search for completed work orders or providers in those ZIP codes. Keyword searches allow users to narrow results further.
The data brings a new liquidity to the market and a real price of service, said Paul Nadjarian, OnForce's senior vice president of marketing.
"By providing more than just a trend line analysis, you provide visibility into what people are paying and why," Nadjarian said. "It's one thing to see networking installation costs $80 an hour in a ZIP code, but looking at the volume of requests, time to acceptance, and reading the work summary will show you why the price is high or low. It shows you the forces driving the price."
The new site is coupled with a new branding campaign, proclaiming "The Power of On" to demonstrate the new dimension it brings to the market, said Kevin Gilroy, OnForce's president and CEO.
OnForce now boasts more than 15,000 registered providers and about 5,000 registered IT service providers.
OnForce operates as a clearinghouse for IT services, allowing users to put in a ticket for work to be done at a set price and allows service providers to bid on the ticket. OnForce charges $11 to submit a ticket.
Ninety-three percent of users classify themselves as VARs, and many have taken to working both ends of the program, said Jeffrey Leventhal, the company's chairman.
Many VARs fulfill service orders for others and bid out work to be done on their behalf in a way that extends their labor or geographical reach.
VARs benefit by leveraging each other's resources to earn incremental service revenue without investing in the necessary training, authorizations and certifications themselves, Leventhal said.
IT distributor Tech Data entered into an agreement in November with then ComputerRepair.com to provide the members of its TechSelect community of small and midsize business resellers the opportunity to leverage service partnerships among each other and additional OnForce participants.
OnForce also guarantees billing and payment, as participants must deposit money with the company before accepting bids for work. OnForce makes the payment.