Department for Education

Department for Education - Content design support for GOV.UK

Incomplete applications

10
Incomplete applications
7 SME, 3 large

Completed applications

30
Completed applications
25 SME, 5 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Tuesday 21 April 2020
Deadline for asking questions Tuesday 28 April 2020 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Tuesday 5 May 2020 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work DFE require expert content design provision, creating content for the department to be published on the GOV.UK platform. The work will involve working with colleagues across the department to publish content on to GOV.UK in a timely and accurate manner, meeting the needs of the department and our users.
Latest start date Monday 1 June 2020
Expected contract length 18 months with option to extend for a further 6 months
Location London
Organisation the work is for Department for Education
Budget range Not to exceed £2.5m across the lifetime of the contract

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done DFE require an expert digital copywriting service, working on digital copywriting and content design for the department in line with the digital communications strategy. Projects involve working with colleagues across the department, publishing content on GOV.UK in a timely and accurate manner, meeting the needs of the department and our users. Provision should cover 4-10 content designers in total to manage this work.
Problem to be solved Provision of digital content design and editorial service, working with material produced by the department to create accessible, user-focussed content for GOV.UK, including collaborative content production and use of HTML, PDF/A, and other formats as required. The successful supplier will demonstrate experienced provision of copywriting with exceptional attention to detail, using Google Analytics, other data sources and user research to create clear, concise and engaging content. Creating content which is focussed on the needs of users requires specialist skills and experience, and must be carried out alongside colleagues within the department who may have no prior understanding of such needs.
Who the users are and what they need to do The supplier will work with customers embedded in teams across the department who have a need to publish content to GOV.UK, working with them to develop accessible and engaging content in a way which communicates the department’s objectives, meets the GDS design principles, and puts a focus on users.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
Existing team A supplier will be joining an existing civil service team of mixed disciplines, including 7 content designers, working on strategic improvements and developing content with colleagues across the department.
Current phase Not applicable

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place London (Sanctuary Building 20 Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3BT)
or
Sheffield (2 St Pauls Place, 125 Norfolk Street, S1 2JF)
or working remote due to current climate.
Working arrangements Onsite work required, most senior team member to report in to the Team Leader, Digital Communications Team. Occasional travel to other DFE offices may be required, subject to DFE travel and subsistence policy. There may be scope for some home working. Occasional work outside of standard business hours may be required.
Security clearance Successful suppliers must be able to demonstrate that all proposed team members have passed standard DFE security criteria. They must have BPSS (Baseline Personnel Security Standard)

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions Standard DOS framework and call-off terms and conditions. Day rates should be inclusive of all costs. Travelling to and working from the primary location for each Statement of Work, will not attract any expenses. Travelling to other locations while performing DFE work must adhere to the DFE travel and subsistence policy and will need to be invoiced by the suppliers with supporting receipts.

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
  • Extensive copywriting experience, paired/collaborative writing experience
  • Extensive experience of creating user-focussed content design based on user needs, journeys and behaviour, and experience in applying this expertise within a large government department
  • Extensive experience of creating user-focussed content design based on user needs, journeys and behaviour, and experience in applying this expertise within a large government department
  • xperience of analytics and evaluation, including the use of Google Analytics and interpreting relevant data
  • Knowledge of accessibility requirements in relation to digital publishing, able to create accessible documents using a range of software e.g. Microsoft Office and Adobe
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Experience of wider communications issues and the digital environment, especially in relation to fast-moving and high-profile political settings
  • Project management skills and experience
  • Experience of paired/collaborative writing
  • Experience of related disciplines to content design including user research principles and service design

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
  • Extensive experience in producing high quality, accurate, time-bound copywriting to tight deadlines
  • Extensive experience of working with the GOV.UK website and Whitehall publishing platform, including a comprehensive understanding of content types, formats and GDS style guide and design principles
  • Experience and understanding of working within a government setting, specifically working within a large department
  • Strong understanding of the wider technical competencies involved in working with GOV.UK including but not exclusive to the production of HTML content types, creating manuals, converting documents to accessible formats
  • Experience of handling data and analytics, making use of evidence to create compelling and persuasive arguments
  • Ability to work in a fast paced and agile environment, including ability to remain calm under pressure and meet tight deadlines
Cultural fit criteria
  • Commitmented to excellence, improvement, seeking actionable feedback, setting targets
  • Collaborative approach, for example seeking understanding, working cooperatively, seeking mutual solutions to conflicts
  • Diplomatic approach to problem solving, using data, evidence, sound judgement to reach desired outcomes, show resilience and pragmatism
  • Work as part of a large team alongside civil servants, delegating work where appropriate, seeking to balance and prioritise large workloads across a wider team to meet deadlines
Payment approach Time and materials
Additional assessment methods
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

50%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

30%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Can you explain in more detail and with examples what you mean by "paired/collaborative writing" please? Paired writing is when the content designer drafts content alongside the subject matter expert (usually the policy lead in a DfE context), there is a GDS blog post which sets this out: https://gds.blog.gov.uk/2016/09/21/it-takes-2-how-we-use-pair-writing/
(copy link into browser).
Thank you.
2. What will the IR35 status for these roles? and is the price quoted inclusive or exclusive of VAT? Roles currently outside of IR35.
If ‘price’ means the maximum value of the contract that includes VAT at 20%.
Thank you
3. Hi there,
One of the questions appears to be repeated:
"Extensive experience of creating user-focussed content design based on user needs, journeys and behaviour, and experience in applying this expertise within a large government department"
Is there another question missing or should we just repeat our answer for both?
Thanks a lot
Hi, Thank you,
To confirm there is not a additional question missing. This one was just added in twice in error, please answer once, stating 'as above' in the second box or copying the same answer, this question will only be scored once. Thank you.
4. Is there an existing supplier? Yes
5. You state in the opportunity that: A supplier will be joining an existing civil service team of mixed disciplines, including 7 content designers, working on strategic improvements and developing content with colleagues across the department.” Are you looking for the successful supplier to provide a whole team to deliver against specific outcomes, or for individuals from the supplier to fill specific roles within this team? A supplier to provide digital content design and editorial service delivering against specific outcomes with the size of that team to flex as requirements determine.
6. Criteria 3 in the ‘Essential skills and experience’ is a duplicate – is this a mistake/is there supposed to be another criteria point instead? Hi, thank you, yes as per previous clarification this is a mistake, there is not replacement question. Please answer once, stating 'as above' in the second box or copying the same answer.
7. How important is it that we have experience applying the essential expertise described within a large government department? For instance, if we have experience in applying the required expertise in very large and highly regulated non-government organisation, public service organisation and non-departmental public bodies would that be acceptable? Could you tell us the weighting/score you will apply to the “applied within a large government department” aspect of the brief? The supplier will need a thorough understanding of the complexities and challenges of working in a large government department, although that may be supplemented by experience gained in other organisations. This question carries an overall (stage1) weighting of 16%.
8. How important is it that we have experience publishing content on the gov.uk domain specifically? For instance, would experience publishing on other large, public-facing web domains suffice? The supplier will need to provide content design and editorial service for DfE to meet specific outcomes which must be delivered using the Whitehall CMS, it is essential to demonstrate ability to deliver outcomes from commencement of the contract.
9. Is your requirement for a number of ‘individual content designers’ or for the provision of ‘content design and content production services’ that might be delivered by a multi-disciplinary team comprising content designers and other specialists? The requirement is for a supplier to provide digital content design and editorial service delivering against specific outcomes with the size of that team to flex as requirements determine.
10. Are you able to be more specific about the media formats you are likely to require (e.g. copy, graphics, video, tables, forms, etc) and the level of expertise required in specific Adobe software packages? There is a need to create accessible html content including tables, convert documents to accessible pdfs using Adobe Acrobat and run accessibility checks and fix minor issues on Microsoft Word and Excel files using the inbuilt checkers. We don’t require graphic or video production skills.
11. We will be working alongside multi-disciplinary team. What roles will that team be made up of? And what will their availability for our project? The supplier will work alongside an existing civil service team which includes several content designers, digital communication managers and a consultation coordinator. Resourcing is determined on a project basis, however there is an expectation of collaborative working with other teams members.
12. If additional, non-content, resources are required (e.g. user research) will we be expected to supply that from within our budget? There isn’t a requirement to provide non-content resource such as user research. Thank you.
13. Can you declare who is the current incumbent/supplier? Yes this is in the public domain, incumbent supplier is Scroll. Thank you.