NHS Digital

prj_3649 - NHS Digital’s Data Processing Service - Datasets

Incomplete applications

Incomplete applications
8 SME, 4 large

Completed applications

Completed applications
6 SME, 2 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Wednesday 30 October 2019
Deadline for asking questions Wednesday 6 November 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Wednesday 13 November 2019 at 11:59pm GMT


Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work To support the Buyer to onboard 2 datasets onto its Data Processing Service
Latest start date Monday 6 January 2020
Expected contract length
Location Yorkshire and the Humber
Organisation the work is for NHS Digital
Budget range £130k (Not including VAT)

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done To onboard 2 new datasets into the Buyers strategic data collection, management and analytical solution – Data Processing Service (DPS)
Problem to be solved To maximise the availability, value and security of patient data held by NHSD, whilst minimising the cost of doing so .
Who the users are and what they need to do NHS Digital, NHS organisations and other in academic and research organisations, who based on the Buyers approval process will access the data held within the DPS.
Early market engagement No.
Any work that’s already been done
Existing team The Buyer has a number of data management teams who are responsible for the ingestion of dataset onto the Buyers DPS solution.
Current phase Live

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place NHS Digital.
1 Trevelyan Square;
Boar Lane,
Working arrangements Embedded within the Buyers Data management team
Security clearance BPSS is the minimum standard for Supplier staff. Supplier staff will also be expected to complete Security Checks.

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions NHS Digital Supplementary Terms and conditions. These will be shared via NHS Digital's procurement portal shortly after publication of this notice.

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
  • Evidence of expertise in building the most appropriate database and process design, developing code using industry standard data management tools, in this case Databricks (on AWS).
  • Evidence of expertise in developing code using established coding languages, specifically Python and ANSI SQL.
  • Evidence of the successful use of agile delivery approach.
  • Evidence of ability to build data products that are fully automated, can be re-used, extended and deployed as “production quality” services.
  • Evidence of ability to collaborate with others building the whole data processing pipeline – from data extract through to finished data products (could include final extracts, indicators and publication content).
  • Evidence of ability working against a specification to develop automated and repeatable processes, but equally comfortable to question where specification is ambiguous.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Experience of working in health care delivery context.
  • Evidence of the ability to understand MS SQL and/or SAS DI Studio.

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
  • Delivery Approach and Capability
  • Resourcing Approach and Capability
  • Technical Approach and Capability
  • Cultural Fit
Cultural fit criteria
  • Evidence of focusing on user needs and developing solutions in close partnership with customers
  • Evidence of working in collaboration with other colleagues to deliver outcomes for which they are jointly responsible
Payment approach Capped time and materials
Additional assessment methods
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Where can I find out more information about this procurement? A copy of the draft initial SOW and the Instruction to Bidders will be published on NHS Digital's procurement portal shortly.
2. Please can I have a copy of the draft Call Off Terms? A copy of the draft Call Off Terms and NHS Digital Supplementary Terms will be made available as soon as possible.
3. What's the duration of the contract? Our expectation and aspiration is to secure a supplier who can meet the requirements set out within the statement of work (SOW) by 31 March 2020. The expected duration of the Call Off Contract is 6 months.

However, all Suppliers who are interested in bidding for this SOW should be aware that there is no guarantee of further work beyond 31 March 2020. Further work is subject to NHSD requirement and budget.

A copy of the draft Call Off Terms and NHS Digital Supplementary Terms will be shared shortly.
4. When will the Draft SOW be made available? The Draft Initial SOW and Instructions to bidders documents can be downloaded from: https://nhsdigital.bravosolution.co.uk

The reference is: pre_190 - prj_ 3649 – NHS Digital’s Data Processing Service - Datasets
5. Please could you expand on the buyer’s expectations regarding working arrangement? Does the buyer expect that the supplier’s team is co-located with the internal team’s full time (at 1 Trevelyan Square) or would other methods including part time or remote working arrangements be possible? Our expectation is that in order to most effectively support the Buyer in the delivery of the outcomes described in this Statement of Work any resources provided by the Supplier will be based at the Buyers location in TSQ. The Buyers optimal solution is that support provided by the Supplier will be on a full time basis although part time will be considered.
6. Would the authority be able to clarify what role Databricks plays in this project? Databricks is the platform that underpins our Data Processing Service - it provides cloud platform and automated cluster management for working with Spark and Python-style notebooks. The Data Processing Service is hosted in AWS.
7. As this opportunity requires work to be delivered onsite, could the authority kindly confirm their position with regards to travel expenses? Expenses will be charged in line with NHS Digital's Expenses Policy which forms part of the Call Off Contract. The Call Off Contract is currently being updated to reflect recent DOS 4 changes, and so the Expenses Policy is not ready to share at present. However, in principle, the Supplier shall not be entitled to recover expenses working at the Buyer's premises in Leeds. As part of the Commercial Evaluation at Stage 2, Suppliers will be asked to submit a cost model detailing any underlying costs for delivery of the SOW.
8. Could you please confirm if the final submission has to be done on bravo portal only or we have to submit here on DigitalMarket place portal as well. Please refer to the Instruction Document.

Stage1: The shortlisting requirements are posted on Digital Marketplace. Bidder submissions at Stage1 should be made via Digital Marketplace only. Submissions via any other means will not be accepted. Submissions will be evaluated to create a shortlist of bidders.

Stage2: SHORTLISTED BIDDERS – Shortlisted bidders will be invited to submit a detailed qualitative and financial response via the Authority’s Bravo e-Tendering portal only. Responses to the detailed qualitative and financial questions will only be accepted from shortlisted Bidders and will not be accepted via any other means other than the Bravo e-Tendering portal.
9. As per our understanding initial submission has to be done via digital markeplace portal and then if we are successful we would be invited to participate in next stagee via bravo but looking at the portal at the moment it looks like we have to submit a response here as well on bravo before 13th Nov. Could you please confirm. To confirm - all submissions for Stage 1 MUST be submitted via Digital Marketplace.

You are not required to submit anything via the Bravo Portal at this point. The deadline in Bravo relates to expressions of interest only and submissions in Bravo do not count towards the procurement.

The Stage 2 Evaluation will be conducted via Bravo only, and shortlisted suppliers will be provided with more information about this at the time.
10. One of the essential criteria of this opportunity refers to ‘Evidence of expertise in building the most appropriate database and process design, developing code using industry standard data management tools, in this case Databricks (on AWS).’ Would suitable alternative data migration and management tools be acceptable for this opportunity? It is essential that Suppliers demonstrate development experience with Databricks and AWS and expertise with Python and ANSI SQL. Question 6 provides information about the role of Databricks (and AWS) in this project.

A key part of this assignment is to work with NHS Digital's existing data management service who have expertise using MS SQL and SAS and to support channel shift to the new technology stack.