Maryland Clean Energy Center

motherlamentationInternet and Web Development

Dec 7, 2013 (3 years and 8 months ago)

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Maryland Clean Energy Center

Request for Proposal: Website Development

P
ublished

August

5
,

2013

Proprietary and C
onfidential




R E Q U E S T F O R P R O P O S A L


Confidential



2

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND
................................
................................
............
3
 
PURPOSE OF THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL
................................
.............................
3
 
BACKGROUND
................................
................................
................................
.........
3
 
CHALLENGES
................................
................................
................................
..........
3
 
ADMINISTRATIVE
................................
................................
................................
.......
5
 
TECHNICAL CONTACT
................................
................................
.............................
5
 
DUE DATES
................................
................................
................................
.............
5
 
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS (subject to extensions by MCEC)
................................
............
6
 
SCOPE OF WORK
................................
................................
................................
........
7
 
REQUIREMENTS
................................
................................
................................
......
7
 
DELIVERABLES
................................
................................
................................
........
8
 
GUIDELINES FOR PROPOSAL PREPARATION
................................
................................
.
9
 
PROPOSAL SUBMISSION
................................
................................
..........................
9
 
DETAILED RESPONSE REQUIREMENTS
................................
................................
.........
10
 
1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
................................
................................
.........................
10
 
2. SCOPE, APPROACH, AND METHODOLOGY
................................
.............................
10
 
3. Project Deliverables
................................
................................
.............................
10
 
4. Project Management Approach
................................
................................
.............
10
 
5. DETAILED AND ITEMIZED PRICING
................................
................................
......
10
 
APPENDIX A: COMPANY OVERVIEW
................................
................................
.........
10
 
APP
ENDIX B: PROJECT TEAM STAFFING
................................
................................
...
11
 
APPENDIX C: REFERENCES
................................
................................
......................
11
 
EVALUATION FACTORS FOR AWARD
................................
................................
............
12
 
CRITERIA
................................
................................
................................
...............
12
 





Confidential



3

INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

PURPOSE OF THE REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL

The Maryland
Clean Energy Center
(MCEC)
was created in 2008 to encourage the transformation
of the energy economy with programs that catalyze the growth of business, increase related
“green collar” jobs, and make clean energy technologies, products and services afford
able,
accessible, and easy to implement for Maryland residents.


The Maryland Clean Energy Center is interested in consolidating its websites (mdcleanenergy.org,
mcecloans.com, powertochoose.org, and mcecsummit.org) into a fresh, current, and streamlined
s
ingle site powered by upgraded/updated technology.


Each of the aforementioned sites was developed in response to specific MCEC program growth
over time. Each asset was designed and produced by independent vendors with differing
approaches to design, bran
ding, SEO and content management. They also do not make effective
use of current technologies, search engine optimization techniques, or marketing strategies.


MCEC is seeking proposals for the design and development of a new website that consolidates
the
se various sites into one master site that addresses our challenges and meets our ongoing
needs.


BACKGROUND

The MCEC website (mdcleanenergy.org) serves three primary audiences: Government, Business
and Consumers.
A revised content architecture has been d
eveloped to better reflect and serve these end
-
users. MCEC is seeking a partner to help us translate this into a revamped website.


CHALLENGES


The MCEC website faces a number of challenges which the organization must address in a
website redesign:


Bran
ding

Current web assets lack a unified design concept that conveys MCEC to site visitors. The sites
suffer from a lack of unified and consistent characteristics across sites, including color palette,
layout, typography, navigation, and consistent design el
ements.


Design and Layout

The main site (mdcleanenergy.org) has not kept up with standards and technologies for web
deployment and content management such as:



Outdated multi
-
tiered flyout menu structure



Inefficient use of page real estate

content are
a is only 55% of total page area



Not mobile/tablet
-
friendly: fixed page width of 1024px is not navigable, and some
elements are non
-
functional, on touch
-
based mobile/tablet devices



Content presentation does not make optimal use of multimedia and graphics p
otential of
modern browsers



Site does not make use of newer design capabilities of HTML5 and CSS3
-
enabled
browsers



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4

Data Management

Since 2009, web content has been accumulating on the web server and within the Drupal CMS
without ongoing maintenance and a
rchiving to ensure that the web server and CMS can be
managed efficiently.


Technology Platform

The main MCEC portal is based on the Blueprint theme running on Drupal version 6. Since then,
development on the Blueprint theme and many crucial Drupal 6 modul
es have ceased, resulting
in the following challenges:



The base theme on which the MCEC portal is based is deprecated, preventing reliable
upgrade from Drupal 6.



The MCEC theme was developed by a third
-
party vendor and no documentation for any
custom cod
e integrated into that theme exists.



Drupal 6 does not support current Drupal themes and modules required for effective
mobile device support.



No development support is available for existing Drupal 6 modules.



Much of the content currently residing in the
Drupal 6 database is outdated or
unnecessary, resulting in database bloat.


Search Engine Optimization

The site is not geared optimally for search engines:



Duplicate content



Lack of dynamic content



Implementation of H1 tags on MCEC portal image slider



Unexploited potential for crosslinking between web assets



Social media, analytics monitoring, and keyword tagging not implemented



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5

ADMINISTRATIVE

TECHNICAL CONTACT


Any questions concerning technical specifications, Statement of Work (SOW) requirements,
p
roposal format, or contractual questions must be directed to:


Name

Monica Dean

Title

Communications Officer

Address

1212 West Street, Suite 200 Annapolis, MD 21401

Phone

443
-
949
-
8505

Email

mdean@mdcleanene
rgy.org





DUE DATES

A written confirmation of the Vendor’s intent to respond to this RFP is required by 8/23/2013. All
proposals are due b
y
5pm on 09/13
/2013.
Any proposal received at the designated location after
the required time and date specified f
or receipt shall be considered late and non
-
responsive. Any
late proposals will not be evaluated for award.










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6

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS (subject to extensions by MCEC)




Event

Date

1.

RFP Distribution to Vendors

8/5/2013

2.

Written Confirmation of
Vendors with Bid Intention

8/23/2013

3.

Questions from Vendors about scope or approach due

8/30/2013

4.

Responses to Vendors about scope or approach due

9/6/2013

5.

Proposal Due Date

9/13/2013

6.

Target Date for Review of Proposals

9/16/2013

7.

Final Vendor Selection Discussion(s)
--
Week of

9/16/2013
-
9/20/2013

8.

Anticipated decision and selection of Vendor(s)

9/23/2013

9.

Anticipated commencement date of work

10/21/2013

10. Anticipated Date of Completion

TBD



Questions and Responses

All q
uestions and responses will be posted for public view on the MCEC website bid board:
http://www.mdcleanenergy.org/news_and_events/bid_board



Please submit all questions to:
mdean@mdcleanenergy.org


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7

SCOPE OF WORK

REQUIREMENTS

The following information should be reflected in the proposal for this project and provide pricing
for this engagement:


Branding Goals



Update and refresh the look
and feel of MCEC site to better present the MCEC identity
and mission to its multiple stakeholder audiences.



Upgrade underlying technology to address challenges, reflect current web standards and
make the site mobile/tablet
-
enabled.



Unify multiple sites
into a cohesive and streamlined new single site. There are no
organizational, technical, or political requirements that dictate a requirement for
maintaining multiple websites.



Create attractive and user
-
friendly interface to upgrade MCEC’s proprietary R
esource
Directory

an end
-
user managed database of clean energy companies, services, and
resources in Maryland.


Functional Needs

MCEC will continue to evolve its functions and processes and has identified some key functional
needs a new system will requ
ire, in addition to the challenges presented above:



Provide robust and easy
-
to
-
use content management capabilities that enable MCEC staff
to handle ongoing updates

including ongoing news/headlines, promoting events,
partners, or programs prominently, an
d adding pages to key navigation areas and
archiving outdated pages

easily.



Create mechanism for user registration and data management to support MCEC’s
Resource Directory, allowing users to manage their listings.



Create mechanism for billing and payme
nt, enabling MCEC to consider charging for
listings in the resource directory and allow
ing
MCEC to accept payments for events or
resources that may be developed in the future.



Provide
r
ecommendations to support the MCEC Summit website (mcecsummit.org)
whi
ch enables event registration and payment
.



Provide recommendations to support subscriptions to and delivery of the MCEC monthly
e
-
newsletter, currently managed in Constant Contact.



Provide recommendations on how to support and manage social media through
content
management solutions, specifically MCEC Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn profiles which
have newly been created but are managed individually.


Implementation

We are seeking proposals that include the design and development of site concepts to inclu
de:



Development of creative design concepts to include home page, key first
-
tier navigation
pages, and representative 2
nd
/3
rd
level pages.



Development of technical and functional specifications to inform technology and
development requirements.



Implemen
tation of design and development into functional site, including testing and QA
.



All necessary technical coordination, including coordination with web hosting provider,
social media integration, and any required coordination with third
-
party services
,
such
as
EventRebels or Constant Contact, if any is required
.



Training for MCEC
Staff
on CMS
.


Assumptions and Expectations


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8

Content Architecture

MCEC has engaged a marketing consultant to help create a consolidated navigation structure
and content architecture
, including proposed wireframes for a home page and first
-
level hierarchy
of pages. The vendor will work in collaboration with
the
consultant and MCEC staff during the
disco
very, definition, and conception
phases to arrive at chosen design and layout for
i
mplementation. The vendor may develop their own final wireframes/content architecture based
on findings and technical considerations uncovered in their discovery process but substantial
thinking and progress ha
ve
already been made in streamlining content.


Copywriting/Page Content

MCEC will lead the content development and copywriting process for page naming, headlines,
and body content.
The v
endor should guide MCEC on process/timing for submitting page content
for implementation.


Any process by which ex
isting material can be imported to the new site should be considered and
described as an option for making the process less cumbersome.



DELIVERABLES

At the conclusion of the project, MCEC requires written documentation of the approach, results,
and reco
mmendations associated with this project. A formal presentation of the findings and
recommendations to senior management may also be required.



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9

GUIDELINES FOR PROPOSAL PREPARATION

PROPOSAL SUBMISSION

Award of the contract resulting from this RFP will be
based upon the most responsive Vendor
whose offer will be the most advantageous to Maryland Clean Energy Center in terms of cost,
functionality, and other factors as specified elsewhere in this RFP.


MCEC reserves the right to:




Reject any or all offers a
nd discontinue this RFP process without obligation or liability to
any potential Vendor,



Accept other than the lowest priced offer,



Award a contract on the basis of initial offers received, without discussio
ns or requests
for best and final offers, and



Awa
rd more than one contract.


Vendor's proposal shall be submitted in several parts as set forth below. Each Vendor will confine
its submission to those matters sufficient to define its proposal and to provide an adequate basis
for MCEC’s evaluation of the V
endor’s proposal.



In order to address the needs of this procurement, MCEC encourages Vendors to work
cooperatively in presenting integrated solutions. Vendor team arrangements may be desirable to
enable the companies involved to complement each other's u
nique capabilities, while offering the
best combination of performance, cost, and delivery for the Website Development being provided
under this RFP. MCEC will recognize the integrity and validity of Vendor team arrangements
provided that:




The arrangemen
ts are identified and relationships are fully disclosed,
and



A prime Vendor is designated that will be fully responsible for all contract performance.


Vendor’s proposal in response to this RFP will be incorporated into the final agreement between
MCEC an
d the selected Vendor(s). The submitted proposals must include each of the following
sections:


1.

Executive Summary

2.

Approach and Methodology

3.

Project Deliverables

4.

Project Management Approach

5.

Detailed and Itemized Pricing

6.

Appendix A: Company Overview

7.

Appendix
B: Project Team Staffing

8.

Appendix C: References


The detailed requirements for each of the above
-
mentioned sections are outlined below.




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10

DETAILED RESPONSE REQUIREMENTS

1. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This section will present a high
-
level synopsis of the Vendor’s
responses to the RFP. The
Executive Summary should be a brief overview of the engagement, and should identify the main
features and benefits of the proposed work.


2. SCOPE, APPROACH, AND METHODOLOGY

Include a detailed description of your development proce
ss and how we should be prepared to
work with you based on the scope of service we have requested. Include any assumptions, as
well as how you typically present concepts or project elements, how revisions are accounted for,
and how you handle review and si
gn
-
off for implementation. This section should also elaborate
on:



Project Stages and Milestones



Proposed Schedule


3. Project Deliverables

Please outline the deliverables that you anticipate will be generated while
completing the scope of work for this
project.

4. Project Management Approach

How will your company oversee the implementation of this RFP? Please utilize
the names and information that will be provided in Appendixes A and B.

5. DETAILED AND ITEMIZED PRICING

To be included:



Overall Fee



Fee
broken down by project phase



Payment schedule; including hourly rates by position if applicable



Other costs, such as change orders, etc.

Note: MCEC does not pay for travel, mailing, photocopying or other overhead expenses.


APPENDIX A: COMPANY OVERVIEW

P
rovide the following for your company:



Official registered name (Corporate, D.B.A., Partnership, etc.), address, main telephone
number, website, and e
-
mail address.



Key conta
ct name, title, address (if different from above address), direct telephone and
e
-
mail address.



Person authorized to contractually bind the organization for any proposal against this
RFP.



Brief history of company, including year established.

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11

APPENDIX B: PROJECT TEAM STAFFING

Include biographies and relevant experience of key staff and
management personnel. Describe
the qualifications and relevant experience of the types of staff that would be assigned to this
project by providing biographies for those staff members. Describe bonding process and
coverage levels of employees. Affirm that
no employees working on the engagement have ever
been convicted of a felony.

APPENDIX C: REFERENCES

Provide three current corporate references, for which you have performed similar work,
including: contact information and relevant URL’s






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12

EVALUATION FAC
TORS FOR AWARD

CRITERIA

Any award to be made pursuant to this RFP will be based upon the proposal with appropriate
consideration given to operational, technical, cost, and management requirements. Evaluation of
offers will be based upon the Vendor’s respon
siveness to the RFP and the total price quoted for
all items covered by the RFP.


The following elements will be the primary considerations in evaluating all submitted proposals
and in the selection of a Vendor or Vendors:


1.

Completion of all required respo
nses in the correct format.

2.

The extent to which Vendor’s proposed solution fulfills MCEC’s stated requirements as set
out in this RFP.

3.

An assessment of the Vendor’s ability to deliver the indicated service in accordance with
the specifications set out in t
his RFP.

4.

The Vendor’s stability, experiences, and record of past performance (including previous
client references and sample work) in delivering such services.

5.

Availability of sufficient high quality Vendor personnel with the required skills and
experienc
e for the specific approach proposed.

6.

Overall cost of Vendor’s proposal.

7.

Consideration, but a non
-
determining factor, will be given to Vendors with an office or
headquarters within 50 miles of Annapolis, MD

8.

Consideration, but a non
-
determining factor, will
be given to Minority Business
Enterprises and Women Business Enterprises.


MCEC may, at their discretion and without explanation to the prospective Vendors, at any time
choose to discontinue this RFP without obligation to such prospective Vendors. Any V
endor, but
not necessarily all, may be requested to meet with MCEC staff to present its proposal and
respond to any question. The winning Vendor will be required to execute a contract, prepared by
MCEC, which incorporates this RFP and the Vendor’s proposa
l.