BACKGROUND: MRI International (MRI) is the world's largest search and recruitment organization with more than 900 offices, more than 4,500 search professionals in 35 countries and annual billings of over $475 million. MRI completes 34,000 placements through specialized divisions ­ Management Recruiters, Sales Consultants, CompuSearch and OfficeMates5. Through the acquisition of Humana International Group, MRI offers search and recruitment services in 35 countries around the world. They also offer a complete portfolio of services including flexible staffing, project outsourcing, videoconferencing, compatibility assessment and relocation services.

PLATFORMS: Windows 95, Windows NT 4.0 or later.

PROBLEM SOLVED: Management Recruiters' West Oakland Detroit branch (MRWOD) needed a way to quickly find the key industry players in multiple industries in a variety of regions across the country. MRWOD's business development depends on rapidly targeting key individuals in a number of industries, such as specific top accounting firms in Michigan. Prior to using iMarket's MarketPlace 6.0, MRWOD relied on gathering this information from several independent data providers, a process that was often slow and cumbersome. They needed a way to quickly drill down to prospects within their targeted markets and chose MarketPlace to do so. MarketPlace allowed MRWOD to create highly targeted lists based on detailed criteria such as SIC code, number of employees, annual sales and whether a company is public or private. It also allowed them to find contact names with job functions other than top management as well as other hard-to-find information.

PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY: Using MarketPlace, MRWOD can tap into and understand new markets with the speed, accuracy and detail that is needed to guarantee results as well as supplement existing data with additional demographic information. Projects that used to be cumbersome and time-consuming, involving hours of work checking across multiple sources of data, are now completed in half the time. For example, MRWOD was able to identify the senior tax accountants at second-tier CPA firms in Michigan, as well find all of the quality managers at manufacturing firms with $100 to $500 million in gross volume in the Indianapolis area. With previous methods, these searches would have taken inordinate amounts of time; but with MarketPlace's six million new contact names and titles, they were able to quickly locate the exact people that they were targeting and have now established relationships in these new markets and regions.

STRENGTHS: There were a variety of strengths that drew MRWOD to MarketPlace. In addition to being an affordable way to access data, MRWOD has cited MarketPlace's efficiency, quality of the data and overall ease of use. The data can be used independently or can be easily imported into existing databases. MRWOD has been pleasantly surprised by not only the accuracy of the data, but also the number of industry-specific data elements and demographics from which to choose ­ so they are targeting the right people and the right companies.

WEAKNESSES: Generally MRWOD is happy with the product, especially given the added features in MarketPlace 6.0. However, MRWOD has cited the inability to view specific job titles prior to purchasing the data as an area for potential improvement.

SELECTION CRITERIA: iMarket's MarketPlace was chosen for its ease of use and wide range of capabilities. MarketPlace allows MRWOD to find very specific and diversified data at a reasonable price.

DELIVERABLES: In using MarketPlace, MRWOD was able to increase the efficiency of their list building and research by 50 percent. Although it is difficult for them to estimate an exact dollar amount from the time saved, they have noticed a significant improvement in productivity.

VENDOR SUPPORT: Because the product is extremely user friendly and provides easy-to-understand help menus, they have not needed to use vendor support.

DOCUMENTATION: Both the manuals and the built-in documentation have been clear, easy to understand and provide answers to the key questions asked thus far.

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