Rochdale Boroughwide Housing (RBH)

Rochdale Boroughwide Housing: Portal & Channel Shift Partner

Incomplete applications

9
Incomplete applications
7 SME, 2 large

Completed applications

7
Completed applications
7 SME, 0 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Tuesday 9 July 2019
Deadline for asking questions Tuesday 16 July 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Tuesday 23 July 2019 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
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Summary of the work RBH seeks to engage with a strategic digital partner to deliver a fit for purpose, seamless, integrated customer portal that elevates our online offer to customers in functionality, quality and accessibility and facilitates channel shift through the availability of fully integrated, end to end self-serve opportunities.
Latest start date Monday 2 September 2019
Expected contract length 2 years
Location North West England
Organisation the work is for Rochdale Boroughwide Housing (RBH)
Budget range

About the work

About the work
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Why the work is being done Rochdale Boroughwide Housing (RBH) has approved a Digital Transformation Strategy to underpin its Corporate Strategy (available on the RBH website) and transform the delivery of services to customers. A key part of the Strategy is the delivery of a feature-rich customer portal, fully integrated with back office systems, that enables customers to access, transact and interact with RBH online. The key drivers for digitalisation of services and online offer are an enhanced, improved quality of service and significant reduction in transaction costs through a challenging channel shift programme. The portal (Phase 1) is expected to be launched in April 2020.
Problem to be solved RBH's current online customer offer is limited and places greater demand on traditional channels which are more expensive and restricted to 9 to 5 hours of service. The existing portal is limited in functionality and scalability with customers' limited to making payments and checking their balances. Applicants can register and bid for homes online through a separate Locata CBL portal. The RBH website has not been refreshed since 2015 and will be redeveloped alongside the portal. The portal should offer rich integration with back office systems (including Castleton products, Capita Open Housing, DRS and Total Mobile)
Who the users are and what they need to do Main users of the portal will be existing & prospective tenants to: make payments and manage direct debits, view/update accounts and contact details, report/diagnose/book/reschedule/cancel repairs, raise feedback, submit ID and documents, register/bid for a new home (via integration with Locata), digital sign-ups, report issues e.g. ASB, request a service e.g. bulky waste, make Right to Buy applications, view planned maintenance information and other services identified.
Other users will include Applicants, RBH Members, Board members, the Representative Body and members of the public.
Early market engagement Early market engagement has taken place with a number of digital agencies and suppliers to assess technology options available, indicative high level costs and project approach. Discussions have also taken place with other housing associations that have recently delivered similar channel shift programmes to understand costs, issues and lessons learned.
Any work that’s already been done RBH commissioned an external consultancy to undertake initial Discovery phase and identify priority areas for channel shift. The initial work resulted in customer personas and an indicative roadmap for channel shift based on service channel, volumes, process times and taking into account complexity/feasibility of digitalisation and likely uptake based on customer segments.
Existing team Internal team will include:
Transformation Programme Manager
Business Analyst
IT Systems Analyst
Channel Shift Product Owner
IT Infrastructure Analyst
Customer Insight Officer
(NB: None of the above roles are a dedicated project resource and will be assigned to the Portal project as required)

Close collaboration will also be required with other external partners including:
Manifest account manager
Castleton and Capita account managers
Marketing/branding agency
Website partner
Current phase Discovery

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place Rochdale (various locations)
Working arrangements It is expected that the supplier will work closely with the internal team and other external partners, mostly onsite at RBH offices. Attendance is expected at weekly project team meetings with occasional attendance at various Board meetings to report progress. Daily meetings may be required during sprints.
Security clearance No security clearance required

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions

Skills and experience

Buyers will use the essential and nice-to-have skills and experience to help them evaluate suppliers’ technical competence.

Skills and experience
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Essential skills and experience
  • Extensive experience of developing and delivering innovative and well integrated digital platforms to support end to end transactional channel shift within the Social Housing Sector
  • Extensive experience of working with partners within the Social Housing Sector to continually enhance and develop solutions to ensure adoption of new feature-rich online functionality
  • Portal functionality to include Self Appointed Repairs, Rents & Payments (Multiple Accounts); Complaints, Service Charges, ASB, Service Requests, solution must be scalable to easily shift other services online
  • Experience of successfully integrating back office systems such as Capita and Castleton products, Kirona DRS, Total Mobile and document management systems.
  • Skills to develop the integration platform in such a way that it is easy to switch between different back office systems if and when the need arises
  • Web services and API's provided for integration as required
  • Product must be mobile responsive (HTML5 and CSS3) and able to render information and documents
  • Product must be scalable and adaptable as requirements change such as Decision Tree/Diagnostics solution, Form Builder, wysiwyg editor
  • Experience of designing services for users with low digital literacy and awareness of Initiatives and solutions to tackle digital exclusion and barriers to adoption of digital platforms
  • Experience of collaboration with 3rd party website designers / vendors as part of a review of UI and UX designs to ensure a seamless experience for customers across platforms
  • Evidence of content design skills
  • Experience of carrying out user research and delivering successful discovery outcomes
  • Payment Integration ideally with current payment vendor Capita Payments
  • Product must support information integrity through validation across key data items including manual and dynamic data sets queried from back office systems
  • Easy to manage content delivered through a secure, intuitive, customisable and powerful CMS
  • Compliance with minimum WCAG2.0 and integration with Browsealoud
  • Platform must comply with industry best practice for security and GDPR and provide feature rich registration and authentication options for users / tenants
  • Experience of developing brands and digital guidelines to maximise reach and adoption of the portal
  • Evidence of providing a portal for managing tenant and customer engagement / consultation (eg Surveys, Feedback, expressions of interest for events etc)
  • All pages / sites should be mobile responsive, delivering the same experience across all types of devices and platforms including desktop, mobile, tablets, android / apple etc.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Demonstrate delivery of portal products that achieve minimum 60% channel shift within the Housing Sector
  • Single sign-on between the portal and Locata Choice Based Lettings and other Systems
  • Push Notifications to customers with tailored information delivered to the home page or device.
  • Chat Bot technology with integration to FAQs and back office Contact Centre Management / telephony platforms (Mitel) for intelligent queuing.
  • Experience of implementing Digital Signups / Tenancies
  • Delivering a solution for Commencing Tenancy Terminations
  • Delivering a portal for managing customer consent, Subject Access requests and FOI. (GDPR)
  • Page Feedback
  • Submitting / Managing Right to Buy Applications, Bulky Item Collections and Report FlyTipping etc
  • Support Anonymous Reporting when required
  • View Compliance Information eg. Bioler Service Dates
  • Reporting / MI / Audit Trail to support management of portal
  • Customizable FAQ and Knowledgebase that is integrated with the service request and search facility
  • Experience of providing easy and adaptable Integration (utilising own solutions or 3rd party platforms such as Manifest which RBH currently use) with back office systems to include:
  • Integration with: Capita Open Housing, Kiron DRS, Castleton EDRM, Castleton Agile / EDRM, Total Mobile, DataStox (Gas), ECMK, BHI (Asbestos), SharePoint

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 3
Proposal criteria
  • Technical Solution
  • Approach , methodology and resources
  • How the solution meets user needs
  • How the solution meets RBH's vision and ambition
  • Ability to meet RBH timeframes
  • Identification of risks and dependencies and approach to managing them
  • Company size, makeup and team structure
  • Value for Money
  • Product Roadmap
  • Post Implmentation Support - SLAs and Upgrade and Release Policy
  • Product Pre-requisites and Backup and DR policy (Hosted)
Cultural fit criteria
  • Extensive experience of collaboration with both digital partners/agencies and clients within the Housing Sector
  • Experience of working with an internal project team with an open and transparent approach
  • Willingness to share knowledge and experience with other team members
  • Willingness to work according to the values of RBH
  • Experience of working with clients with low technical expertise
  • Experience of working with users as part of UI and UX design and development
  • Demonstrate Social Value for Suppliers as outlined in our Social Value Policy: https://rbh.org.uk/socialvalueguide
Payment approach Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Reference
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

40%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

40%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Can you confirm your budget for the project (implementation and annual ongoing)? We have made the decision not to disclose the budget at this stage as we are open to suggestions for modifications to our requirements based on bidders’ experience that may impact upon cost
2. The ‘Who the users are’ section of the listing references: Applicants, RBH Members, Board members, the Representative Body and members of the public. Will these users be required to access and use the portal in phase 1? If so, can you provide more information on what they would desirably be able to do? The development phases for the portal are based upon initial Discovery work and prioritisation of services based on volume of transactions via face-to-face and telephony. Phase 1 includes self-appointed repairs and ‘My Account’ services and therefore primary user group is existing tenants. Phase 2 incorporates prospective tenants/applicants as part of the Choice Based Lettings offer and all other users for the consultation platform and ‘report it’ functions.
3. Are you able to share the outputs of the initial Discovery phase?
It would be helpful if you can share the customer personas and an indicative roadmap for channel shift.
The initial Discovery phase identified four customer personas to inform service design and communications to ensure that we are not excluding anyone. They can be summarised as follows: a) Challenged – lives life in difficulty, often feels frustrated, needs help and time b) Problematic – blames everyone else, only sees own needs, talking often helps c) Everyday – living life normally, needs clear signposts, change always happens d) Vulnerable – often emergency need, may feel uncertain, needs broader help. There is an indicative roadmap that prioritises self-appointed repairs and 'My Account' services.
4. Have you got a budget in mind for this phase of the project? As Q1 - We have made the decision not to disclose the budget at this stage as we are open to suggestions for modifications to our requirements based on bidders’ experience that may impact upon cost.
5. As we and Manifest are business partners, we have integrated with all of the customer's internal system via the Manifest Universal Adaptor, is the intention that we are to connect to each system listed's individual systems or via Manifest? The vision is that we will use Manifest, but each integration will be reviewed on a case by case basis to understand the benefits and best approach for RBH.
6. Please could you confirm, or otherwise, that you are using Microsoft Dynamics 365 CRM We use Castleton CRM
7. re. Single sign-on between the portal and Locata Choice Based Lettings and other Systems – we have implemented similar solutions from self-service to choice base lettings system, we need to understand at a technical level what is possible, is there any technical documentation as to the Locata systems integration capabilities? At this stage we are interested in your past experience of integration with other pre-existing portal solutions including different approaches taken, extent of integration achieved and the challenges faced. In addition we are keen to assess your understanding of CBL and associated system requirements.
We envisage that at the project initiation stage we would jointly assess the technical options and agree an approach that would offer the best possible solution. In preparation we have engaged with our suppliers and are confident that a suitable solution can be achieved. Potential partners are welcome to contact Locata direct for any further information.
8. re. Integration with: Capita Open Housing, Kiron DRS, etc. – Our integration engine can integrate to any system that has public API/Web services and has integrated with Capita Open Housing, Kirona DRS, Castleton EDRM – is there any technical integration details for Total Mobile, DataSox, ECMK, BHI and which version of SharePoint are RBH running? We are keen to assess your experience of integrating with solutions that are in use within housing organisations. That includes the approaches used, challenges faced and extent of integrations achieved. We currently do not have SharePoint but have plans to migrate our intranet to SharePoint online for 2020
9. Single sign-on between the portal and Locata Choice Based Lettings and other Systems
Question: VerseOne have implemented similar solutions from self-service to choice base lettings system, we need to understand at a technical level what is possible, is there any technical documentation as to the Locata systems integration capabilities
At this stage we are interested in your past experience of integration with other pre-existing portal solutions including different approaches taken, extent of integration achieved and the challenges faced. In addition we are keen to assess your understanding of CBL and associated system requirements.
We envisage that at the project initiation stage we would jointly assess the technical options and agree an approach that would offer the best possible solution. In preparation we have engaged with our suppliers and are confident that a suitable solution can be achieved. Potential partners are welcome to contact Locata direct for any further information.
10. 10. Integration with: Capita Open Housing, Kiron DRS, Castleton EDRM, Castleton Agile / EDRM, Total Mobile, DataStox (Gas), ECMK, BHI (Asbestos), SharePoint
Question: VerseOne Autevo integration engine can integrate to any system that has public API/Web services and has integrated with Capita Open Housing, Kirona DRS, Castleton EDRM – is there any technical integration details for Total Mobile, DataSox, ECMK, BHI and which version of SharePoint are RBH running.
We are keen to assess your experience of integrating with solutions that are in use within housing organisations. That includes the approaches used, challenges faced and extent of integrations achieved. We currently do not have SharePoint but have plans to migrate our intranet to SharePoint online for 2020