Awarded to Amey Consulting

Start date: Monday 16 December 2019
Value: £1,927,000
Company size: large
Highways England Company Limited

ITPD0337 Data Science Expenditure

27 Incomplete applications

19 SME, 8 large

45 Completed applications

25 SME, 20 large

Important dates

Monday 14 October 2019
Deadline for asking questions
Monday 21 October 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Monday 28 October 2019 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
The supplier will work with us to

1. develop an operating model for data science across HE;
2. establish a common analytics platform;
3. define a prioritised pipeline of data science projects; and
4. deliver 3 high profile projects that show the power of data exploitation.

by 31 March 2020
Latest start date
Thursday 14 November 2019
Expected contract length
Delivery of funded works by end of March 2020, with opportunity for further work subject to funding
South East England
Organisation the work is for
Highways England Company Limited
Budget range
£1.5 million to £1.927 million

About the work

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 fulfil 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
Highways England has a corporate level risk that states 'There is a risk that we don't fully exploit data and information leading to reduced ability to identify or capitalise on opportunities and reduced organisational ability to deliver efficiency through new ways of working'. This piece of work will mitigate this risk by:

1. developing an operating model for data science across Highways England;
2. establishing a common analytics platform to allow the relevant members of the organisation to deliver high quality data analysis;
3. working with stakeholders across the organisation to define a prioritised pipeline of data science projects; and
4. working with stakeholders from across the organisation to deliver 3 high profile projects that show HE the power of greater data exploitation.
Who the users are and what they need to do
As a Head of Data Science I need to have confidence that the information exploitation risk mentioned above is being mitigated throughout the whole organisation. I need to put in place a model that gets the most out of our data science and analytical capabilities
As a Data Scientist or Analyst I need to have the tools, capabilities and processes available to me to deliver high quality analysis into the organisation.
As a Business Leader I need the ability to make data driven and evidence led decisions that I can have confidence in.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
The Highways England CDO team have prepared an Information Vision and Strategy document that will inform the execution of this contract.
Existing team
The work will be led by the Head of Data Science and Performance, who works within the Chief Data Officer's team.

Close working relationships will be expected within the wider CDO - particularly with the Head of Data Architecture, who is leading a piece of work on developing data architecture models and deploying cloud based infrastructure
Current phase
Not applicable

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
The expectation is that the supplier will work from a mix of their own office location and Highways England's Bedford office.

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 Science & Performance.
There will be a significant amount of engagement required with various teams across the organisation. We will use the collaborative tools available within Highways England to best make use of time and will travel to meet key stakeholders and business teams. However, face-to-face team meetings will be required.

We are going through the process of introducing a small number of Data Scientist posts into the CDO organisation. However, these may not yet be available to work with at the start of the project due to potential recruitment lag.
Security clearance
Government Baseline Personnel Security Standard clearance.

Additional information

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.

Essential skills and experience
  • Experience of delivering data science/analytics operating model across multi-directorate organisations
  • Expertise in use of data science tools and techniques
  • Track record in delivery of complex data analysis projects, which have resulted in organisational process change
  • Strong stakeholder and change management expertise
  • Communicating data science principles to non-technical audiences.
  • Deployment and enterprise-level use of cloud-based analytics platforms
  • Demonstrable experience of applied mathematics, statistics, and scientific practices
  • Demonstrable experience of transport domain expertise
  • Demonstrable experience of developing services and value propositions
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Highways Domain expertise (not exclusively Highways England).
  • Demonstrable experience in ability to mobilise at speed

How suppliers will be evaluated

All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • Ability to oversee the delivery of a user centric service based on user needs (20%)
  • All proposed team members must provide evidence that demonstrates they meet all the cultural fit criteria (20%)
  • Experience delivering at pace with high quality (15%)
  • Value for money of the proposed solution (15%)
  • Demonstrates the consideration and application of data ethics in data design (15%)
Cultural fit criteria
  • Demonstrates strong health, welfare and well-being ethos within the way team members work (20%)
  • Demonstrates ability to work in a collaborative and co-creative environment (20%)
  • Demonstrates the ability to take responsibility for doing things and making them happen (20%)
  • Demonstrate passion in what you do. (20%)
  • Demonstrate how you only give commitments you intend to keep, and don’t say one thing and do another (20%)
Payment approach
Capped time and materials
Additional assessment methods
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. Is there a current incumbent or preferred supplier?
2. Would you consider a start-up consultancy that, as a business, has no history but that the team (our people) have relevant experience and success across all key areas?
all responses will be considered and evaluated against the published criteria.
3. Are you able to please confirm whether you intend to award this to a single supplier, or whether you intend to appoint multiple, separate, suppliers?
We will award this contract to one supplier.
4. can you confirm whether this requirement is purely for professional services or a mix of product & services.
The requirement is for technical/professional to support the delivery of the outcomes defined in the tender document.
5. Can you please advise if the budget mentioned is to be spent between 14/11/2019 till 31/03/2020?
Yes - budget to be spent in this current financial year
6. How do HE plan on evaluating price? Will it just be rate-card for a set of roles that they specify, or does HE expect suppliers to provide the summary outcomes?
Price will be evaluated based on the rate card.
7. Are suppliers able to see the Information Vision and Strategy document mentioned in the advert?
The Information Vision and Strategy will be shared with short listed suppliers
8. What roles are you expecting suppliers to provide? In addition, are you expecting all roles to have the ability to be full time?
Suppliers are expected to define the roles and amount of resource required to meet the desired outcomes.
9. In order to compare suppliers like for like, how will price be evaluated?
In line with the Framework guidance: To score time and materials and capped time and materials quotes, you must:
calculate a total score for each supplier by multiplying the day rates for the individuals who’ll be doing the work by the number of days the supplier said each role would be needed to complete the work.
10. 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?
11. Will your Product Owner be allocated full time to this project?
Product owner will be allocated approximately 75% to the project.
12. Are you able to recruit and provide access to users for the purpose of user research?
access to the relevant end user community will be arranged for the project.
13. Has work has been fully defined, bounded and prioritised for the first SOW?
Not completed yet. This is work in progress.
14. Will you be able to organise access to stakeholders throughout the project?
15. 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?
We would expect to see genuine industry experience from other projects that can be utilised in our work
16. Are you happy for suppliers to submit responses that reference multiple examples? Questions such as “Demonstrable experience of transport domain expertise” or “Highways Domain expertise” would be best represented with multiple examples to show breadth of experience.
This is up to the supplier- bearing in mind the word limit.
17. 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?
Relevant private sector examples are welcome and will be given equal consideration
18. To what extent will the delivery of this engagement be aligned to the Service Manual and associated GDS assessments?
The GDS service manual will be referenced where appropriate
19. To what extent is this contract notice linked the other data related contract notice posted on the same day?
Linked in so much as both contracts will be meeting requirements from within the information management area of IT. The outcomes of each will be addressing elements of corporate information risk, will align to our information vision and strategy and will be subject to internal alignment across our information management function.
20. For question “Demonstrable experience of transport domain expertise”, please could you provide further information on the sort of expertise you feel would be valuable. For example, is your interest primarily in highways and automotive experience, or is wider transport (e.g. bus/rail/air) also relevant?
Experience in any transport domain is acceptable
21. Please can you share a procurement timetable outlining steps (which would typically include evidence response evaluation, shortlisting of suppliers for next stage, preparation of supplier proposals, evaluation of supplier proposals, announcement of successful supplier, contract completion, contract signatures, commence work), bearing in mind the dates published on the contract notice: evidence submission on 28th October and commencing work on 14th November?
* estimated timetable
*29th October - evaluate criteria
* 4th November - consensus meeting.
* 4th - 11th November - shortlisted suppliers put together responses
* 13th November - second consensus meeting
* 13th November - award
22. Has any other supplier been involved with this work thus far?
23. Please can you comment on the expected interaction with the parallel Data Architecture programme? In terms of any "enterprise-level cloud-based analytics platform” please can you comment on requirements for coordination between the Data Architecture and Data Science programmes – e.g. to ensure compatibility of cloud infrastructure?
We expect the successful company to work quite closely with the Data Architecture programme. The purpose of the data architecture work is to ingest, conform, and expose data to downstream uses. In practice this will be up-to and including ingestion into a data warehouse. It is our strong preference that any analytics is conducted using conformed data from our data warehouse. Indeed, we would actively encourage the analytics partner to contribute towards the development of the data lake, data warehouse, and associated orchestration and pipeline.
24. Do you expect the three high profile project to be part of the cost estimate? If yes, there are no details share to estimate the size and resource requirements for the project.
Yes. These three projects should be part of cost estimate.
25. Please advise if the published budget relates to the initial 3½ month period of work
26. Please advise on the expected team size Highways England expect to be mobilised during this initial period
It is expected that suppliers will scope size of team based on the defined outputs.
27. How much thought, if any, has gone into a Data Science strategy?
Significant thought has gone in to developing the organisation's information vision and strategy. Use of data science makes up part of this. The data science strategy will be further developed in line with the project.
28. Do you have an existing approach or methodology to data science, if so what approach does the organisation use? If not what approach does the IT department currently use for development? (e.g. Agile, Waterfall, CRISP-DM)
No existing corporate approach or methodology for data science. The project will define what this is. The IT's preferred methodology for development is agile.
29. How do data teams (data analysts and data scientists) and business teams request, access, control, monitor and manage data?
This will be done through our data governance framework - which is yet to be implemented. The successful bidder will have to work with our data architecture team to make data available.
30. How are data science and other tech assets managed?
Introduction of new technology assets are managed via an established process called the 'IT customer journey' where development of these assets gets approval.
31. Is the quoted budget range of £1.5 to £1.927 million the budget for "funded works" referred to in the contract length, or is the "further work subject to funding" also included in this budget range?
quoted budget refers to current funded works. Further work subject to funding is not included in the quote.
32. Has the organisation invested in on demand access to elastic compute resources in the cloud?
We have access to and make use of resources in both Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services. Projects request, design and then implement what they need.
33. Is there a policy on what tools are used within the enterprise? Is it possible to take advantage of open source tools?
The project will work to define what tools are to be deployed. Some open source tools are currently used across the organisation on an ad hoc basis.
34. Is there an existing pipeline for data science solutions to be developed and moved to production to meet business objectives?
No. The project will define this pipeline process.
35. When referencing ‘experience in use of data science tools and techniques’ – are there any that you are specifically referring to?
We would expect some experience around the azure stack. Common tools such as python and R would be expected. However - we expect the supplier to bring industry expertise - so would expect them to define the right tools for the outcomes we would like to achieve.
36. "Regarding the requirement ""establishing a common analytics platform.."
Does this mean the supplier will establish the requirements for such a platform, or that they will implement the platform? If the latter, does the budget include the cost of any software and hardware required for the platform?
It is expected that the supplier will implement the platform. This will be on top of a data warehouse that is being implemented by a separate project.
37. Does Highways England currently use a particular data science tool set, or have any preferences towards a tool set based on its own experience?
There is no corporate data science toolset. There are some localised solutions - such as R and Python. PowerBI is widely used.
38. How do you ensure that you are completing a genuine value for money comparison rather than just a rate card comparison when evaluating price?
The tenders will be marked in line with framework guidelines. We will calculate a total score for each supplier by multiplying the day rates for the individuals who’ll be doing the work by the number of days the supplier said each role would be needed to complete the work
39. Please confirm if you have a preferred Cloud platform provider.
Current preference is azure. If an alternative analytics platform is appropriate this can be considered.
40. Please clarify is a suppliers' briefing will take place prior to the proposal submission deadline.
41. You mention 3 projects to be delivered by end March 2020. Have these projects been specified and the scope and deliverables agreed?
42. You mention that there may be a recruitment lag in the Data Science team. Please could you provide an overview of the current and projected headcount and roles of the Data team and an overview of the broader IT team? This will inform the level of resource we will need to provide to deliver the projects.
Centrally we currently have a Head of Data Scientist, and are going through the process of recruiting a Lead Data Scientist. Further roles will be added depending on the operating model defined by the project. For the tender you should assume no more than these roles.
43. Do you operate a business partnering model between the Data/IT team and the broader Agency? If not, how much contact will be available from operational managers and teams?
There is no formal partnering approach between the data team and the business. The IT team has Business Relationship Managers. We will make sure there are contacts in the operational teams available.
44. Data Awareness – to what extent do existing data assets contain metatags and textual descriptions?
Some, but not all, data assets contain metatags and textual descriptions.
45. How do data teams and wider Agency teams request, access, control, monitor and manage data?
Currently these processes are dependant on the specific data stream. There is no one approach.
46. 1. Is the existing data maintained in centralised repository(Data lake)?
2. Is the proposed analytics platform to be hosted on the cloud or on-premises infrastructure? If cloud, is there a preferred service provider?
3. What would be the current data volume from the source?
4. What would be the data refresh rate expected by down-stream application?
5. What would be the expected data volume incrementally on daily basis?
There is no data lake in place yet. This is part of the data architecture work being completed in parallel. The proposed analytics platform should be on the cloud. The preference is azure. We do not want to define a preferred technology for analytical modelling. This should be defined by the successful bidder in the project.
47. 6. Does the system need to maintain the historical details of entities?
7. What types of unstructured data is to be utilized?
8. Is there a preferred technology for analytics modelling? Is there any tool/technology already being utilized(R,Python,Knime,IBMAnalytics stack name a few)
There is no data lake in place yet. This is part of the data architecture work being completed in parallel. The proposed analytics platform should be on the cloud. The preference is azure. We do not want to define a preferred technology for analytical modelling. This should be defined by the successful bidder in the project.
48. Are there any constraints on the use of non-UK resources, either on-site or remotely?
We are open to different delivery models. However, given the business engagement required we expect a sting UK based team to lead the work. Bidders should also be aware of the limitations of off shore work. For example - data protection legislation prohibits the transfer of personal data to countries outside the European Economic Area (EEA) unless the country in question has been deemed by the European Commission to provide an adequate level of protection for personal data or one of the mechanisms set out in the legislation has been put in place applies.
49. Do you already have a backlog of expected data science projects, or is that business engagement part of the work?
Business engagement will be part of the work.
50. Are you able to share the Information Vision and Strategy, even if at ITT stage?
The Information Vision and Strategy will be shared with short listed suppliers
51. Does the budget include (cloud) infrastructure and service provision, or is that part of the Data Architecture work?
Yes - this is also part of the data science work.
52. “Define a prioritised pipeline of data science projects” – Is the supplier focus on building the data science framework and methodologies to be used in each project? Or is the supplier also responsible for delivering trained models?
The supplier will be responsible for delivering the three projects as defined in the tender document.
53. The opportunity description mentions 3 high profile projects to be delivered as part of the engagement. Are you expecting these projects from the pipeline of prioritised projects?
Yes. Whilst we currently have some ideas on what the projects might be we would expect them to come from the pipeline of prioritised projects.
54. 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.
Our assessment process is transparent and objective and our playing field is absolutely level. We will not be undertaking any redaction but will be seeking to award based on the ability of the supplier to deliver the outcomes required, in a way that aligns to our corporate values and behaviours.