Frequently Asked Questions About the NIST MEP Survey

 What is the MEP Program?  

The Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), a program of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology, is a national network of manufacturing extension centers that provide services to small manufacturers to increase their competitiveness.  

Started in 1989, this partnership among the federal government, state and local governments, and industry consists of more than 400 manufacturing extension offices and centers providing services to small manufacturers located in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Each center works directly with area manufacturers to provide expertise and services tailored to their most critical needs, ranging from process improvements and worker training to business practices and the application of information technology in their companies.  

What is the Survey? 

Since 1996, NIST MEP has sponsored a national survey of manufacturing center clients. The survey asks clients to comment on the business impact of the services provided by their local center (in this case, OMEP). The survey is conducted by a third party organization called Fors Marsch. 

Why does NIST / OMEP survey clients? 

 NIST MEP surveys manufacturing extension center clients for two primary purposes:  

  1. To collect national aggregate information on program performance and impact for national stakeholders. The survey provides information about the quantifiable impact on client firms of the services provided by MEP centers.

  2. To provide center-specific impact information. Centers use this information to communicate results to their stakeholders, both at the state and federal level. Center managers and NIST MEP use results to evaluate center performance and effectiveness. The MEP Center Review Criteria and review process place a strong emphasis on a center’s ability to demonstrate impacts and uses the survey results in its program reviews. The survey results also provide MEP centers with a tool to measure their center’s performance and effectiveness and benchmark their performance against other centers and performance standards. In addition, the data allow NIST MEP to gauge the impact of the national MEP network on America’s manufacturers.


Who takes the survey? 

 Every manufacturer who works with OMEP on a custom project or who attends a cohort is surveyed 6 months after the completion of the cohort or project. It is critical to respond to the survey so that OMEP can continue to serve Oregon manufacturers.  

How will I be notified of the survey?  

You will receive an email that will come from support [at] mepclientsurvey and the subject line will read “MEP Client Questionnaire”.

What should I say on the survey?  

Your consultant at OMEP will discuss the survey with you. Before responding, please check with your consultant with any questions or concerns. Cohort attendees only answer applicable questions.

Will my information be shared? 

No. your individual information is not shared outside of OMEP or NIST MEP. Reports are rolled up into aggregate data.