Awarded to Engine Partners UK LLP (The Engine Group)

Start date: Wednesday 22 January 2020
Value: £138,250
Company size: large
NCS Trust

Advanced Analytics - Development and Deployment

8 Incomplete applications

7 SME, 1 large

14 Completed applications

11 SME, 3 large

Important dates

Monday 28 October 2019
Deadline for asking questions
Monday 4 November 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Monday 11 November 2019 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
Build three advanced analytics tools in collaboration with the newly established Advanced Analytics & Insights team at NCS Trust: sales drivers and forecasting; text classification; programme success drivers
Latest start date
Monday 6 January 2020
Expected contract length
12 months. Possibility to extend for a further 6 month term twice
Organisation the work is for
NCS Trust
Budget range
up to £175,000 (across FY 19/20 & FY 20/21)

About the work

Why the work is being done
NCS is delivered by a national network of hundreds of partners across the country. 80% of programmes are delivered in Summer, the remainder in Autumn. NCS has recently established its Advanced Analytics function to make best use of the performance data in the central data system. The function aims to provide decision makers across NCS Trust and the partner network with relevant and timely insight based on deep understanding of performance drivers
-Goal of this work: to develop and deploy three tools that will uncover drivers of success and predict performance and serve as testbed for NCS Advanced Analytics
Problem to be solved
Tools required:
1. Recruitment (= sales) drivers and forecast: a tool uncovering drivers of successful recruitment performance using advanced analytics techniques and writing . First version by end February 2020; Final output by end March 2020
2. Customer experience drivers: a text classification tool taking customer feedback (collected by us through sms and e-mail) and categorising it using machine learning. Outputs written to dashboard (dashboard to be built separately by winning supplier of BI outcomes procurement). By end June 2020.
3. NCS programme quality drivers: a tool uncovering drivers of successful programmes, using advanced analytics techniques. By end September 2020
Who the users are and what they need to do
"As a decision maker in the NCS network, I need to have access to analysis based on deep understanding of success factors, and to a reliable forecast of what our performance will end up being, so that I can make decision to adjust our course of action proactively"
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
-All partners in the network use a single central data system (Salesforce) managed by NCS Trust, which contains all the critical data needed for driver analysis and forecasting
-Salesforce Einstein Analytics (SFEA) platform up and running, but AI/Discovery functionality not actively used (suppliers may build use of this functionality in their proposal, although not required)
-1. Recruitment drivers and forecast: existing forecasting model, spreadsheet based; existing high-level analysis on performance drivers
-2. Customer experience drivers: text classification currently bought as 'black box' solution from external provider
-3. NCS programme quality drivers: some basic analyses (e.g. regression based)
Existing team
-Existing team is entirely in-house and consists of Director of Advanced Analytics & Insights, Central Data & Analytics Manager and 4 people reporting into this Manager (2 on Data Quality & Assurance, 1 on Data Engineering, 1 on BI Analysis)
-Key stakeholders include the data leads at each partner within the NCS network
-Some (limited) interaction with in-house Salesforce team
- Collaboration with supplier working on 'Business Intelligence Deployment' project (yet to be appointed)
Current phase
Not started

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
Working arrangements
We are seeking an arrangement where the supplier works with us full-time, 5 days per week. Minimum of 3 days per week onsite required for face-to-face team meetings; up to two days per week can be working from home (only by agreement)
Security clearance
DBS 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 leading advanced analytics projects from start to finish
  • Experience in building the client's capability in advanced analytics, empowering the client to have full ownership of the tool once built
  • Experience with developing and deploying advanced analytics tools (diagnostic, predictive) Python and R
  • Experience with connecting advanced analytics tools to Salesforce (write and read)
  • Experience with developing and embedding data ethics framework into advanced analytics tools
  • Experience with leaving behind robust documentation and user training with full transparancy on methods and algorithms used
  • Experience in building flexible tools that can adapt to changing assumptions and working models
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Experience with Salesforce Einstein Analytics
  • Experience working for organisations that act as commissioners within the public sector
  • Experience working with organisations that work with a network of partners
  • Experience working with central or local government
  • Experience working with youth programmes

How suppliers will be evaluated

All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • How the approach meets the overall goal
  • How the approach meets users' needs
  • Estimated timeframes for the work
  • Identification and mitigation of risks and dependencies
  • Proposed team structure and availability
  • Value for money
Cultural fit criteria
  • Trustworthy
  • Results-Driven
  • Inclusive
  • Bold
  • Empowering
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

1. How many people and which roles are expected to be provided by the supplier?
It is up to the supplier to propose a team setup that would deliver the required outcome. We would expect full-time engagement of at least one person doing the actual groundwork; they can be complemented with other team members as the supplier sees fit.
2. Are there any restrictions upon delivery of the toolset?
Please advise:
On premise or cloud environment?
Anonymised data?
On premise or cloud environment
NCS Trust follows a cloud-first policy and suppliers would be expected to support this.
Anonymised data?
Data can and will have to be anonymised when taken out of Salesforce.
3. Are there any restrictions upon delivery of the toolset?
Please advise:
Location of data?
Location of data?
-Existing data sources for the different projects are:
1) Recruitment (= sales) drivers and forecast: Mostly Salesforce data, some government data (schools lists), manually collated datasource (e.g. cohort sizes)
2) Customer experience drivers: NPS scores and drivers sent to us by text (responses sit in Salesforce), Salesforce data about programme, demographics, etc; existing fixed taxonomy (spreadsheets)
3) NCS programme quality drivers: Salesforce programme data, external data such as programme evaluations
-Any exported data must be hosted within the EU and preferably within the UK
4. Are there any restrictions upon delivery of the toolset?
Please advise:
Preference of cloud services if applicable – Azure/Amazon Web Services?
BI Tool – Are dashboards to solely be delivered using Salesforce Einstein or would other tools be considered?
Software licencing – Upon successful acquisition of the project will licences be paid for by NCS?
Preference of cloud services if applicable – Azure/Amazon Web Services?
No restriction, but preference for Google Cloud Platform and Heroku
BI Tool – Are dashboards to solely be delivered using Salesforce Einstein or would other tools be considered?
Solely using Salesforce Einstein#Software licencing – Upon successful acquisition of the project will licences be paid for by NCS?
We will pay for data hosting if need. We will not pay for other licences; we already have Salesforce Einstein Analytics licences and we expect to be the owner of the tools that will be developed rather than a licencee.
5. How much of the existing onsite resource will be available?
Is there any documentation you can provide to aid with our understanding and tailor our proposal?
All team members mentioned can free up 2 days per week fully dedicated to the BI and AA projects
Yes we can provide additional documentation. Please let us know by follow-up question what documentation you would be looking for