Highways England

ITPD0349 Highways England Information Vision and Strategy implementation – Data Architecture

Incomplete applications

27
Incomplete applications
20 SME, 7 large

Completed applications

22
Completed applications
8 SME, 14 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Thursday 12 September 2019
Deadline for asking questions Thursday 19 September 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Thursday 26 September 2019 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work The Supplier will work within Highways England's corporate IT estate to:
a) deploy data architecture software,
b) develop holistic data architecture models and artefacts describing the organisation's data at rest and in flow,
c) deploy cloud-based data ingestion, conformance, integration, analysis, and master data management infrastructure by March 2020.
Latest start date Friday 1 November 2019
Expected contract length Delivery of funded works by end of March 2020 with extension of up to 2 years
Location No specific location, eg they can work remotely
Organisation the work is for Highways England
Budget range £2,050,000 (funded)
Maximum contract limit until end 2021/22 £8,000,000.

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done Our vision is to realise the full value of information by empowering our people, connecting ourselves and building trust with our suppliers, stakeholders and customers.
By providing information that can be trusted and valued by all, we can fulfill our purpose of connecting the country through better journeys.
Our primary objectives:
1.Harness the passion of our people to innovate and realise value from information
2.Treat information as an asset, and a means of achieving our strategic objectives
3.Build advocacy with our suppliers, stakeholders and customers by sharing trusted information
4.Use information to shape our future role as a great company
Problem to be solved Our Information Visions & Strategy states that, “it is critical to have a business information model, which gives us a single view of all the types of information that exist; and a logical information model, which describes how they relate to each other.”

At present we lack a holistic view of how data flows through our organisation. Data architecture is defined only at a system level, and so we risk using inconsistent data definitions. We have neither the modelling artefacts- nor the cloud-based infrastructure- required to arrive at a 'single source of truth' or to implement master data management.
Who the users are and what they need to do As a Data Architect I need to be able to open, create, update, present and share ontologies, canonical, conceptual, logical, and physical data models and flow maps using graph, network, snowflake, and ERD schema in a visually-appealing format that allows me to explain my models to stakeholders across the business.

As a Data Engineer or Analyst I need to be able to ingest, manipulate, profile, conform, master, analyse, and present data from multiple legacy sources on a single scalable cloud-based platform in order to facilitate the analysis of information across multiple datasets to employ master data management.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done The Highways England Chief Data Officer (CDO) team have prepared an Information Vision and Strategy document that will inform the execution of this contract.
Existing team The Supplier will be responsible for providing technical support to the existing Information Technology Directorate reporting into the Head of Data Architecture and Engineering (HoDA) and the Chief Data Officer.

The Supplier will be expected to work closely with the wider CDO team including the Head of Data Governance and Assurance, the Head of Information Rights and Security, and the Head of Data Science and Performance.

The Supplier will work with the HoDA to ensure that designs are produce which meet the requirements of HE's Enterprise Architecture Group under the CTO, and to engage with representatives across HE's Directorates.
Current phase Not applicable

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place We expect the supplier to work from their own offices. They should be able to provide one desk space in the same location to accommodate the Highways England project lead (HoDA).
Visits will be required to Highways England's offices across the country, particularly (but not limited to) The Cube, Birmingham.
Working arrangements The Supplier should work collaboratively with the Head of Data Architecture and Engineering (HoDA) in accordance with Agile Scrum methodology. The expectation is that the Supplier should be in daily contact with the HoDA, involving them in the project backlog, sprint planning, and sprint reviews. The Supplier should be able to accommodate the HoDA at their offices as required. In addition, the Supplier should expect to meet with Highways England stakeholders across their Corporate Offices. The Supplier should be ready to work collaboratively with other member's of Highways Engalnd's supply chain. Expenses limited to travel, accommodation, and software (by exception).
Security clearance Government Baseline Personnel Security Standard clearance.

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
  • Experience of design and population of enterprise data architecture using network, graph, entity/relationship, or star/snowflake models.
  • Experience of design and population of data dictionaries.
  • Experience of deployment and enterprise-level use of cloud-based data storage solutions (e.g. data lakes, data warehouses).
  • Experience of deployment and enterprise-level use of cloud-based master data management software.
  • Experience of deployment and enterprise-level use of cloud-based data manipulation software (e.g. data bricks, python, kafka or similar).
  • Cyber security standards that complies with Cyber Security Essentials.
  • Experience of communicating data architecture and principles to non-technical audiences.
  • Experience of Cloud service design and management.
  • Experience of agile scrum project management.
  • Experience of definition and management of business requirements and use cases.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Experience of design and population of ontologies.
  • Experience of deployment and enterprise-level use of cloud-based data integration software (e.g. data factory or similar).
  • Experience of deployment and enterprise-level use of cloud-based data profiling software.
  • Experience of deployment and enterprise-level use of cloud-based data analytics software.
  • Experience of design, deployment, verification and validation of data migration exercises.
  • Experience of Highways Domain expertise (not exclusively Highways England).
  • BIM data standards and software.
  • CRM and/or Microsoft Dynamics.
  • GIS data standards and software.
  • Experience of enterprise business change, stakeholder engagement, and communication.

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 5
Proposal criteria
  • Your response should include a description of your approach to the overall management of the services, including: Mobilisation
  • Management of your project team
  • Reporting, governance, and security
  • An organogram with identification of key staff and the roles they fulfil, including clear identification of the ‘points of contact’ and the escalation procedures
  • Stakeholder engagement and communications
  • How you propose to incrementally develop a holistic data architecture for the organisation.
  • Your criteria for selecting the right data architecture toolset and modelling approach.
  • How you propose to design and right-size the cloud services required under this contract
Cultural fit criteria
  • Your response should include a description of your approach to working collaboratively with Highways England and our suppliers including your approach to: Stakeholder engagement and communications;
  • Quality management
  • Business continuity
  • Knowledge transfer
  • Making effective decisions
  • Seeing the big picture
  • Collaborating and partnering
  • Delivering at pace
  • Delivering value for money
Payment approach Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

70%

Cultural fit

10%

Price

20%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Is there a specific Data Management solution that will be used by the resource for both Data Modeling and Data Lineage? No, we hope to agree the appropriate solution(s)/software stack with the winning supplier.
That said, we have a preference for a solution that is not solely focused on relational databases and can accommodate graph data models.
2. Can you let us know if this requirements includes software / platform provision is just for implementation? We expect that this contract will include licensing of the relevant software, as per the previous query (and/or use of open-source software).
Our preference is for the relevant software to be deployed on Highways England's Azure cloud, however there may be the requirement to use a supplier cloud whilst access to the Highways England cloud is designed and agreed.
3. Can you confirm that, for this engagement, the funded £2M budget covers the period from 1 Nov 2019 to 31 March 2020 only; and the additional £8M covers the period April 2020 to March 2022? £2.05mil. Funded for financial year 2019/20.
Contractual ceiling of £8mil., so up to £5.95mil. uncommitted spend April 2020 - March 2022.
4. Is the primary requirement to assist with the Information Vision and Strategy implementation from a Data Architecture perspective, per the title of the opportunity, or to procure and deploy data architecture software and the related broader data management infrastructure? Those two things are not mutually exclusive.
The scope of works, as per the tender, is to work with Highways England to develop data architecture for the organisation, and to put in place scalable data management infrastructure. These are capabilities that will enable the broader delivery of the Information Vision & Strategy during RIS2.
5. Is there an incumbent supplier for the services being requested under this opportunity? No
6. Is Highways England looking for an independent implementation partner that will be able to assist Highways England achieve the Information Vision? Furthermore, would this engagement cover a review of requirements, product recommendation and selection, procurement, deployment and implementation of a number of data management products? Yes. However we expect the funded work to March 2020 to emphasize the development of data architecture artefacts, and ingestion/conformance cloud infrastructure.
For more information on the Information Vision & Strategy please refer to https://highways.ecosystem.guide/info_vision
(password 'datadriven')
7. How mature is the Architectural Design that underpins this requirement and to what extent will the successful supplier be expected to validate the data strategy (including triaging data sources) or support the customer’s procurement activity (including selection of tooling), as pre-requisites to starting the development and implementation activity scoped in this engagement. Alternately – based on previous answers – is the supplier expected to procure, hold & provide the required software licensing to the customer/on their behalf? There is no existing Architectural Design.
We do not believe that our data strategy requires validation.
We will seek to use existing suppliers to procure Azure products, but if additional software is required (e.g. non-Microsoft software such as Neo4j, SharpCloud, Protege, or similar) then we will require the supplier to license this software on our behalf until we can add the software to Highways England's supported software catalogue.
In order to enable access to the Highways England cloud environment we will also require the supplier to help prepare some design documentation around user roles, resource group requirements, security arrangements etc.
8. Given the drawbacks associated with using Agile in Architectural Design (as opposed to Delivery or Software Design) & any delays anticipated based on the answer to #1; what Minimum Viable Product is expected to be delivered in the initial 5-6 months contract period (until March 2020) versus the 2 year extension? MVP for March 2020 would be:
1. A conceptual data model representing the organisation's data landscape to facilitate conversations with Directorates. Capturing 80%+ of top-level conceptual entities, relationships, and key attributes, understanding how these entities are currently stored/mastered within HE systems and how the data flows across the organisation.
2. Deployment of cloud infrastructure (e.g. ingestion and conformance layers) allowing us to mirror data sets in the cloud, and then transform those data sets to align with the conceptual data model.
The more value we demonstrate, the more likely we will be able to continue after March 2020.
9. Do you have any commercial pre-requisites for organisations making an application? E.g. required numbers of staff, turnover, examples of implementation of similar scale? You will note the burn rate of committed expenditure between now and March, so we will require an organisation that is able to mobilise expenditure at that level without undue reliance on contractor (e.g. not directly employer) resources.
The evaluation criteria explicitly asks for experience implementing projects of this nature. The emphasis on the word 'enterprise' is intended to distinguish between small scale pilot/trial projects and projects that implement business-as-usual architecture for enterprises (or large teams within enterprises).
10. Could you confirm that this phase of bidding is only a PQQ, and that the evaluation criteria (proposal and cultural criteria) do not apply for this phase of competition? Correct. Phase one uses the skills and experience criteria to arrive at a shortlist of between 3 and 5 suppliers to take to formal proposal stage.
11. How will you be evaluating these PQQ-type skills questions? Will SME's be penalized versus large organisations on certain categories (that perhaps large organisations may naturally score better on – business change for instance)? We have been lucky enough to work with many SME organisations that are great at Business Change and would challenge the premise of this question.
We have no intention of penalising SMEs.
12. What is your proposal criteria for future bidding stages i.e the main proposal and case study? Should you be shortlisted we will be asking for two written responses describing your overall approach to delivering the services (technical), working collaboratively with HE and our suppliers (cultural), and three case studies (up to 500 words) describing your relevant experience (technical).
13. On the Q&A call on 18 Sep. you mentioned you will go to market with 3 or more tenders to provide the enabling capabilities into the business to deliver on your information vision & strategy. Can you elaborate on what the other 2+ tenders will comprise? These tenders are presently being finalised. Broadly they will cover technical services to further our data governance and data science objectives.
14. On the Q&A call on 18 Sep. it became clear there is at present no existing place where data can be extracted from legacy systems or on-premise systems and put into a system agnostic data lake for manipulation and data management. You mentioned it would be nice to see the beginnings of this as part of this contract. Can you elaborate on the total number of legacy and / or on-premise systems that need data extracted and how many of these do you see in scope as part of the ‘beginnings’? We currently lack a complete inventory of data or systems. We would like to create cloud infrastructure that is able to scale to accommodate the eventual migration of a wide range of HE systems and data.
Between now and March we would be keen to demonstrate the value of the architecture and infrastructure by, for example, mirroring (rather than migrating) ~1-5 high-priority datasets in the cloud to permit discovery and conformance.
15. From a Data Management perspective, you mentioned Highways England having various use cases justifying either having document storage, graph database and/or relational database. Can you elaborate on each of these with some examples. Can you give an estimate about how many data entities we are talking about? Golden records, etc.? All is negotiable based on the winning supplier's expertise. That said, in our notional architecture we would strongly consider using a graph database (such as Neo4j or Protégé) in order to create our conceptual data models.
Without any data architecture at present is is extremely difficult to quantify the number of records or entities. Again, in case it is not yet clear, we are genuinely starting from a blank slate.
16. You mentioned using preferably open source software in the cloud. How ‘important’ is this for Highways England and how does this weigh against using closed source software? Maybe a more precise way of phrasing this would be that we prefer to use open source software where it can perform the same function as proprietary software.
Where proprietary software meets a specific need that is not easily met using open source tools then we are happy to consider cost-effective solutions in this space.
17. R.E. Q6 about Cyber Essentials. Does Highways require a customer example of Cyber Essentials compliance or will a compliance statement suffice? For either how would we be able to Exceed your requirements here? A compliance statement is fine.
We're potentially talking about mirroring, migrating, and exposing a wide range of data within the organisation. So an informative example from another project where data is managed securely on a platform with multiple different user roles and levels of privilege (without the whole thing becoming an unworkable mess) would be valuable background for us.
18. Please can you indicate the data domains for mastering and the approximate data volumes? No, sorry, as previously stated this information does not currently exist.
19. CRM and/or Microsoft Dynamics. Please can you expand what experience you are looking for in relation to this question? Two specific areas:
1. Customer and stakeholder information obviously brings increased levels of exposure in terms of information rights.
2. CRM systems in general, and MS Dynamics specifically, will have their own idiosyncratic data structures.
Insight in both of these areas would be valuable to our planned works.
20. What roles are you expecting suppliers to provide? In addition, are you expecting all roles to have the ability to be full time? We do not have notional project resource structure or list of roles, we would look to suppliers to propose this.
We are looking for a committed core team, but we acknowledge (and indeed value) the ability to bring in specialist resources as required on a part-time or as needed basis.
21. In order to compare suppliers like for like, how will price be evaluated? As this is time and materials we will evaluate price based upon your published DOS rate card, or proposed discounts to the rate card, normalised using a common weighting of grades.
22. Will your Product Owner be allocated full time to this project? The Head of Data Architecture will be your dedicated HE client and resource on this project. However, this role comes with some other obligations that will need to be balanced with this project.
23. Will the scores from the evidencing round be taken through to final evaluation? Or will they only be used for the purposes of shortlisting suppliers? The final marking weightings will be:
Technical Response = 70%, of which:
- Technical Competencies = 20% (1% per competency)
- Methodological Responses = 30%
- Case Studies = 20%
Cultural Fit = 10%
Financial Response = 20%
24. Are you able to recruit and provide access to users for the purpose of user research? Yes, though obviously not unlimited access, we will create an engagement plan as part of mobilisation.
25. Has work has been fully defined, bounded and prioritised for the first SOW? No
26. Will you be able to organise access to stakeholders throughout the project? Yes, though obviously not unlimited access, we will create an engagement plan as part of mobilisation.
27. For the first evaluation round (evidence), what would you expect to see from an answer for it to be deemed 'exceeding' and score 3 marks? Genuine insight or experience from another project from which we can take a valuable lesson to inform our work.
28. As per DOS guidelines 'You should only provide one example for each essential or nice-to-have requirement', are you only requesting one example per skills and experience question? Yes. Though obviously you are welcome to establish your capability in the abstract when providing a relevant example.
29. Do you either require or prefer that public sector examples are cited rather than private sector examples? Or, if we have a relevant private sector example, will it be given equal consideration to a public sector example? As per the previous response, relevance to the task is the primary consideration. Please be didactic.
30. We note that major Tier 1 suppliers have extensive footprints inside Highways England. How will you implement ethical walls that are sufficiently robust to level the playing field for SMEs and ensure that bids are judged impartially and objectively? For example, unbranded bids and redacted supplier names. As stated previously there is no incumbent supplier and we have sought to remove bias in the procurement criteria. We have sought to procure as openly as possible in order to try to understand the best of what the market can offer.
31. Are you interested in experience of Cloud storage solution delivered using Managed services or build with Infrastructure as a service, or either? Either, though probably more of the latter.
32. Can you share the current data and/or information architecture? No, it doesn't exist, that's why we are procuring this work.