This opportunity is closed for applications

The deadline was Tuesday 25 February 2020
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (The Conflict, Stability and Security Fund)

CSSF Management Information System

9 Incomplete applications

7 SME, 2 large

22 Completed applications

18 SME, 4 large

Important dates

Tuesday 11 February 2020
Deadline for asking questions
Tuesday 18 February 2020 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Tuesday 25 February 2020 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
• Scope, build and supply an improved MI System, including training, support and possible development
• Improved user experience, including simplified and more intuitive interface for data input and retrieval
• Improved MI and data analysis tools (i.e. sophisticated reports)
• Provide system code for ongoing update purposes
• O365-based
Latest start date
Monday 6 April 2020
Expected contract length
'Month 0-3:Discovery, Alpha, Beta & Training'; 'Month 4:Iterative Development'; 'Month 3-15:Support'
Organisation the work is for
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (The Conflict, Stability and Security Fund)
Budget range

About the work

Why the work is being done
The Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) within the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) currently use a spreadsheet for management information (MI), which is becoming cumbersome and difficult to analyse. This requirement involves all Discovery, Alpha, Beta, and Live (including Training, Ad-hoc Support and possible Iterative Development) Phases.
Problem to be solved
The CSSF currently uses an Excel spreadsheet to track programme and project progresses. Updates are manually input into this spreadsheet at various frequencies (circa every quarter) by each regional team. This process is cumbersome for end users and providing analysis is difficult. In addition, Excel’s visualisation capabilities are limited and the production of quality management information (MI) is currently very labour-intensive. CSSF require a fully functioning, updated (Office 365 based) MI system that is capable of handling and analysing its current collection of data, incorporating transparency and commercial data and any future data requirements. User guides and documentation also need improvement.
Who the users are and what they need to do
CSSF staff (based internationally) need to be able to have better access to and management of current and future CSSF programme and project progress data, so that they can handle and analyse it appropriately.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
Existing team
One to three FCO staff within CSSF. The supplier will need to work within the FCO UK site (King Charles Street, London) because they will needs to work on FCO systems - this can not be done remotely or in a cloned system environment.
Current phase
Not started

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office,
King Charles St,
Working arrangements
The supplier is responsible for how they allocate resource for this requirement, but must be onsite for at least three days a week.

The FCO will not be liable for any travel and subsistence expenses within M25/Greater London. Any travel and subsistence expense reimbursements outside M25/Greater London will be in accordance with FCO’s Travel & Expenses Policy.

The supplier must follow the FCO's IT and security procedures and policies in relation to access, data and equipment use.
Security clearance
Suppliers must have minimum SC vetting for all staff involved with this requirement at any time during this contract.

The FCO will be a sponsor for any suppliers attaining security clearance.

FCO has no involvement with the clearance process and cannot guarantee when, or if, any clearances will be attained.

Additional information

Additional terms and conditions
The Discovery Phase will be Firm Price costed from the outset.

Both the Alpha and Beta Phases will be subject to the outcome of their previous Phase, and thus commencement of work will be subject to FCO receiving and approving a costed SOW from the supplier.

The Training will be Firm Price.

The amount of Live Support and Live Iterative Development is unknown at this stage, therefore both will be on a 'Time & Material' price basis against a provided rate card. This is included in the overall budget and is subject to FCO approval.

Further information provided after down-selection.

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 in undertaking user led research to understand core user needs and complex business requirements [Weighting of 4]
  • Experience in conducting rapid user led discovery projects within a global organisation [Weighting of 5]
  • Comprehensive approach to delivering Minimum Viable Product solutions within compressed timelines [Weighting of 5]
  • Experience of designing and delivering end-to-end data integration solutions.[Weighting of 5]
  • Experience of designing, implementing and embedding technology solutions within Office 365 [Weighting of 4]
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Experience of supporting organisational change (including culture and skills) within large organisations to support board-level decisions [Weighting of 2]
  • Experience of engaging users to support the rollout of new technology within a global organisation [Weighting of 2]
  • Experience of working effectively with users and stakeholders with limited technical expertise [Weighting of 2]

How suppliers will be evaluated

All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • Approach and methodology [Weighting of 8]
  • Estimated timeframes for the work [Weighting of 8]
  • How the approach or solution meets our goals [Weighting of 8]
  • Team structure [Weighting of 6]
  • Approach to issue management, problem resolution and improving ways of working, including a risk register [Weighting of 6]
  • Value for money [Weighting of 6]
Cultural fit criteria
  • Work as a team with our organisation and other suppliers [Weighting of 3]
  • Be transparent and collaborative when responding to demand [Weighting of 3]
  • Share and embed knowledge with the client team [Weighting of 3]
Payment approach
Fixed price
Additional assessment methods
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. Is this task outside IR35 ?
This procurement is for a service-delivery (i.e. an outcome) as opposed to for specified resource (i.e. individuals), therefore this opportunity is outside of IR35.
2. Written Proposal:
The listing states ""All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal"". Is this proposal required as part of the submission on 25th February, or will requests for proposal follow?
There does not seem to be any means of attaching a proposal to the response.
The Written Proposal is not required as part of the submission on 25th February. Only the down-selected suppliers will be asked to submit a Written Proposal, to which further information on this will be provided then.
3. A nice-to-have skill is 'Experience of supporting organisational change (including culture and skills) within large organisations to support board-level decisions'. Are you looking for experience of supporting organisational change on the back of board-level decisions, or change that informs board-level decisions?
Experience of supporting organisational change on the back of board-level decisions.
4. Could you expand on what you expect from the 'support' element of the contract, and proposed costs for this?
Whilst there is a requirement to supply full technical specifications for the system created, there is a possibility that future developments may cause unforeseen technical issues with the MI system that internal technical officers can not easily/quickly fix - the requirement is for a T&M based support contract to cover the period of 12 months from delivery of the system - suggestions are for a budget of no more than £25,000 per year.
5. Will this MI system be required to integrate with any other technologies used within the organisation?
The MI System will need to be built within the Foreign Office's version of Office 365. There is no requirement to integrate with non O365 technologies.
6. Should answers be name blind for this opportunity?
Whilst not mandatory because submissions will be anonymised before forwarding to the technical evaluators anyway, it would be appreciated if suppliers could name-blind their applications.
7. The ITT says “The amount of Live Support and Live Iterative Development is unknown at this stage, therefore both will be on a 'Time & Material' price basis against a provided rate card. This is included in the overall budget and is subject to FCO approval.” Please can you confirm that the budget of £200,000 covers all elements of this procurement including support for 15 months?
The £200,000 budget covers all elements including the provision of support covering a period of 12 months after delivery of the MI system.
8. Can the solution run in the cloud? If yes, is there a preferred supplier?
The solution will need to run on the FCO's O365 platform.
9. Does FCO have standards and landscape patterns already defined for this type of requirement (e.g. minimum hardware stacks, pre-mandated software (outside of Office 365) e.g. Power BI?
Please clarify and be more specific with your question and resubmit.
10. How many locations are involved?
The CSSF operates in over 70 countries.
11. How many users will input into the system and do they need to be individually identified (audit of change etc.)?
Number of users who will input data into the system will vary geographically, but is estimated to be up to 100 at any one time (note that staff churn is constant) - audit of change capability is desirable but not a requirement.
12. Will historical data need to be imported into the solution?
The existing MIS is an excel spreadsheet encompassing the period 2015 – 2019, there is no requirement to import this data. There is a need for the new system to incorporate data from the 19-20 financial year - a process will need to be developed to do this (there is currently no pre-existing data set).
13. The listing states “office 365 based” solution. Does this mean that the solution must only use Office 365 products or can we propose O365 compatible products such as PowerBI and Flow? Can related products be considered in the solution, such as SQL Server?
O365 compatible and related products can be considered in the solution.