Buckinghamshire County Council

Design and build a family information service

Incomplete applications

Incomplete applications
28 SME, 2 large

Completed applications

Completed applications
22 SME, 0 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Thursday 17 October 2019
Deadline for asking questions Thursday 24 October 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Thursday 31 October 2019 at 11:59pm GMT


Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work To re-design, build and test a system to manage the digital front door for the Family Support Service, including the underpinning data management system to meet multiple statutory requirements. The contract includes hosting and support for the duration of the contract.
Latest start date Monday 2 December 2019
Expected contract length 2 years
Location South East England
Organisation the work is for Buckinghamshire County Council
Budget range Up to £125,000 including hosting and support for the duration of the contract.

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done The new Family Support Service provides a range of support for children, young people and families to help them overcome problems before they need statutory intervention. We want to refresh our public-facing website (https://www.bucksfamilyinfo.org) so that it is accessible, clear, simple for people to use and works well on any device. The digital service will offer early help information, advice and guidance to families with children aged 0-19 (and up to 25 years for people with a special education need or disability). It will signpost people to childcare providers, services and support across the county to meet their needs. The digital service needs to be easy for the team to manage and needs to support the local authority in meeting its statutory reporting requirements.
Problem to be solved We want to deliver an improved information, advice and guidance offer to help families find the local services and support they need. Clear information, advice and guidance will assist people with every-day life, help overcome problems and challenges, build their self-resilience, increase independence and reduce reliance on service support.

The contract with our current suppliers comes to an end in March 2020 and we want to redesign the service to improve the user experience. We want a responsive system that will allow us to have greater control over changes and improvements and to help us manage the information and content.

The services are currently delivered through a single platform, but we are open to the possibility of having separate systems to meet the data management and reporting requirements, as well as the user facing website.
Who the users are and what they need to do As a parent, I need to find Ofsted registered childcare settings, so that I can trust how they will care for my child

As a parent, I need clear information about services for my family, so that I know what to do next

As a young person, I need clear information, so that I can understand my situation

As a professional, I need clear information, so that I can help children and families

As a parent, I want to find something to do [today, tomorrow, next week], that meets our needs

As a system admin, I need a flexible database, so that I can manage the service

As a system admin, I need service providers to be able to update their own information, so that our data and information is accurate

As a service user, I need to be able to asset my rights under GDPR, so that I have control of my personal data

As a service manager, I need to report on any/all information in the system, so that I can meet my statutory reporting requirements

As a service manager, I need to hold a register of disabled children, so that we meet our statutory duties
Early market engagement We approached several suppliers as part of some informal market engagement. The suppliers were Big Blue Door, Oxford Computer Consultants and Servelec. They visited the council and gave product demo's. Separately the team attended an IT Suppliers Event put on by the National Association of Family Information Services. The team spoke with Servelec, FocusGov, Capita, Idox and Liquid Logic.
Any work that’s already been done The Family Support Service launched in September 2019 and a lot of work went into understanding the needs of the families, children and young people in the local area.

Work is being undertaken to review, update and rationalise the content on the existing system.

The Local Offer information has been co-produced with parents, carers, young people and professionals who will need to input to the new design.

Work has been undertaken to review the Adults’ information advice and guidance website and there is learning from that project that can be reused.
Existing team Head of Digital
Family Support Service Team
Existing Supplier - Open Objects
Current phase Not started

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire
Working arrangements We would expect the supplier to be onsite for approximately 2 days per week, so that they can work collaboratively with the team.
Security 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
  • Provide a multi-disciplinary design and development team
  • Adopt user-centred and agile approaches consistent with the Government Digital Service Standards
  • Understand how to meet the needs of a range of users, including those lacking digital skills
  • Understanding of legal and data protection issues in using personal data
  • Evidence of building accessible websites to WCAG 2.1 AA standard
  • Evidence of sharing work freely and openly with the wider government digital community
  • Evidence of working with Family Information Services, Children’s Services (including an understanding of the Ofsted feed requirements) and the Local Offer for special educational needs and disabilities
Nice-to-have skills and experience

How suppliers will be evaluated

All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 3
Proposal criteria
  • Approach, methodology and estimated timeframe
  • Technical solution
  • How the approach will meet user needs, including accessibility
  • Identification of risks and dependencies and proposed approaches to manage them
  • Team structure - with roles, responsibilities and previous experience
Cultural fit criteria
  • Work as a team with our organisation and other suppliers
  • Be transparent and collaborative when making decisions
  • Engage with a broad range of internal stakeholders
Payment approach Capped time and materials
Additional assessment methods Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Can you confirm the if budget of £125,000 is for 1 year or for the duration of the contract which is 2 years? £125,000 is the total budget for 2 years
2. Is £125,000 the maximum budget? Yes
3. Are you expecting the supplier to provide the hosting of the website? Yes
4. Evidence of working with Family Information Services... etc", this extremely specific experience required will drastically limit suppliers who have otherwise have perfectly suited advise and information solutions.

Would this tender be open to suppliers who haven't worked with you previously in Family Information Services, but have fantastic experience in the Education sector?
If you have relevant experience in similar statutory services, please describe this in your 100 word answer to this criteria.
5. What's the reason to set 2 year duration for the development of this service? So that the contract also covers hosting and support for the 2 year period.
6. On average, how many man hours from design and development team are expected per week/month/year? We are procuring a 'digital outcome' so cannot specify the number of people / days. Shortlisted suppliers will put forward their proposed approach.
7. How many individuals do you expect to have on the team? That is for suppliers to decide.
8. I have a team of 3, 1 Analyst/Architect/Designer on-site, and 2 developer off-shore.

Would this setup work for you, with designer being on-site only for customer engagement, and development team working remotely 100%?
We are open to some of the team working remotely.
9. What is the technical platform/language/cloud platform you expect the supplier to work with? We are not specifying the technology suppliers need to work with.
10. What does the existing team ( if any) use at present? A SaaS product from iDOX / Open Objects
11. Where is the website currently hosted, what technologies are currently in use and are you expecting a full rewrite of the site, or an enhancement to the existing one to meet your new requirements? We use a SaaS product today, so cannot enhance it as the technology is not ours. We would expect the development of a new product.
12. Is the stated budget exclusive of VAT? Yes
13. Has any discovery been done to date? If not, is this expected as part of the design phase of the project? A formal discovery has not been completed, but you will be working directly with the early help team who understand the statutory basis for the service and have carried out research with their users.
14. Do you have a preferred technology stack that a supplier needs to consider when delivering the solution? No
15. Are you looking to procure an "off-the-shelf" product? Are you open to building a bespoke service based on user need that is GDS compliant? We are open to bespoke development and off-the-shelf technology.
16. I note that the contract with your current suppliers comes to an end in March 2020. In which case, are you looking for the new service to be "live" on 1st April 2020 with a testing phase prior to that? Yes
17. Evidence of sharing work freely and openly with the wider government digital community" Would this include sharing on online depositories such as Github, Gitlab, Bitbucket etc.? This could include open and collaborative ways or working, publishing new code as open source, contributing to the development of open standards, sharing research etc..
18. Does the site need to be multi-lingual? No
19. How much content needs to be automatically migrated from the old platform to the new? We do not have to 'lift and shift' all of the old content. This project is an opportunity to redesign the information we publish.
20. Are there API's on the current platform that we can use to pull that content? Some of the services data can be extracted as structured CSV. There isnt a content API.
21. How many 'content editors' approximately will the Family Information Service team have? Today we have 18 staff with varying levels of access plus 35 users with read only access to the services directory
22. Will there be non-official contributors, e.g. members of the public whose copy may need to be moderated/checked or edited before going live? Yes.
23. There’s mention of “the data management and reporting requirements” – do we know currently what these requirements are? We may need to report on any / all data in the system. Examples of reporting we do today are: monitor and manage the childcare market (vacancies, location, type), broker childcare places, meet the Statutory Childcare Sufficiency Assessment return, review user access logs, report on usage / analytics, report on data in the Disabled Children Register, provide insight on the needs of local families.
24. How many page views do you currently have? 1 to 29 October 2019 - 108,820
25. How many visits have you had? Page visits / sessions:
1 to 29 October 2019 – 39,919
26. How many concurrent users do you expect by 2022? I don't know.