Wednesday 25 November 2020
Deadline for asking questions
Wednesday 2 December 2020 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Wednesday 9 December 2020 at 11:59pm GMT
Summary of the work
DfE require a supplier who can provide Software Development capabilities to deliver the digital outcomes required in the continued transition of a more delivery focused and user-centred department. Delivering the design and build of digital services that make a genuine difference to people’s lives as part of DfE’s digital transformation.
Latest start date
Monday 1 February 2021
Expected contract length
North West England
Organisation the work is for
Department for Education
A pipeline of activity is foreseen over the next 24 months, with an indicative budget against the requirements for this capability being £2.5m, but that scope could expand or contract.
Budget approval is subject to Cabinet Office spending controls, service assessments and DfE governance.
Each SOW will outline the work required, associated budget and payment approach, CTAM, CTM etc. Suppliers will need to provide clear costs to enable tracking.
DfE does not commit to any minimum or maximum spend at this point.
About the work
Why the work is being done
DfE Digital are looking for a supplier who can provide Software Development capabilities. Working with us to deliver digital outcomes, which are part of building and delivering user centred services in line with the government service standard, which make a genuine difference to people’s lives as part of the department's digital transformation.
Suppliers will need to be capable of ensuring a project’s overall technical design meets user needs, standards and acceptance criteria, whilst conforming to time and budget constraints. Using agile methods and working collaboratively with multidisciplinary teams to improve DFE digital services.
Problem to be solved
DfE are looking for a supplier who will provide capabilities to deliver outcomes including:
Challenging entrenched practices and influencing decision makers
Identifying opportunities for digital transformation
Using suitable languages and appropriate platforms meeting user needs
Looking for opportunities to collaborate and reuse components
Transforming DfE into a user centred agile organisation by embedding modern practices, design and develop services of various sizes, how they interact with their surroundings and how they evolve over time, working with multiple service teams on problems which require broader development for delivery in an agile environment.
Who the users are and what they need to do
Users include but are not limited to:
People that deliver children’s services
As a parent, I need to understand how to apply for financial support for my child
As a student, I need to know how to apply for financial support for myself
As a Social Worker, I want to spend more time directly supporting children and families so that I can offer an improved service
As a Service Owner, I need my service to be monitored and available with incidents resolved quickly and sustainably
Early market engagement
Internal DfE staff are from a range of disciplines, developers and non-developers including security, policy, user research, service design, finance and commercial. Multidisciplinary skills may also be provided through compliant commercial routes.
The successful supplier will be expected to collaborate with other suppliers in delivering outcomes.
MadeTech are the current incumbent for this Software Development Capability.
Address where the work will take place
For the duration of restrictions on movement due to COVID-19, there is an expectation of remote working, including any required collaboration.
The primary base will be detailed in each Statement of Work (SoW) and expenses will not form part of the cost unless the supplier is asked to work from a secondary location instead.
e.g. If SoW primary base is Manchester then expenses wont be paid for Manchester.
This contract is to cover the North, primary bases for this capability is likely to be Manchester, Sheffield & Darlington.
Travel may be required to other DfE offices nationwide.
DfE require Software Development capabilities to deliver outcomes for our agile development and continuous delivery.
A Statement of Work will outline the base location, working arrangements and outcomes and deliverables for each service and delivery phase.
To improve DfE internal capability, knowledge transfer will be a requirement for each SoW.
Existing DfE digital teams comprise of lead roles in Delivery Managment, Product and User Research, Service Designers.
Contract and Vendor Management form a key part of governance and suppliers must co-operate in fostering healthy working relationships and quality delivery.
We anticipate up to 5-8 concurrent engagements at any time.
DfE requires all supplier staff to have baseline personnel security standard clearance (BPSS).
There may be a requirement for some of the work to gain higher security clearance checks and / or enhanced DBS checks. Where this is needed it will be detailed in the Statement of Work.
Additional terms and conditions
Expenses must be pre-agreed and comply with DFE Travel and Subsistence Policy.
Primary work location stated in SoW won’t attract expenses.
For each SoW issued under this contract, the supplier is obligated to undertake the relevant security and criminal checks as determined by DfE, with the Buyer having sole discretion over the acceptance of Supplier Staff who will be performing the activities in the SoW.
Suppliers must comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) May 2018; the Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018, the Law Enforcement Directive and any subsequent amendments/changes to date.
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
- Demonstrable ability to develop software in Ruby using recent language and framework features, i.e. Ruby on Rails
- Demonstrable ability to develop software in C# using recent language and framework features and .NET packages
- Experience of working in agile teams, working to Test Driven Development, CI/CD and DevOps practices
- Experience of Cloud first approach using infrastructure-as-code, automation and PaaS
- Evidence of performative relational database design
- Ability to write maintainable, shareable code RESTful API design
Nice-to-have skills and experience
- Proven service development experience of accessibility, iterative delivery, “working in the open” aka. Open-source
- Experience of delivering software utilising the features of the Azure platform and GOV.UK PaaS
- Experienced in developing distributed applications and an understanding of the associated technologies
How suppliers will be evaluated
All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.
How many suppliers to evaluate
- Software Development experience in using libraries and frameworks to avoid duplication of work
- Prior experience of deploying to and operating provision, production and pre-production environments
- Evidence of implementing a sustainable and transferable operational model covering monitoring, alerting, high availability, disaster recovery and other appropriate measures
- Demonstrate understanding and ability to deliver digital products and services to government Digital Service standards
- Evidence the scalability, flexibility, deployment, skills and strengths of Software Development capabilities
- Evidence of contributing to a department's software development community, guidance and best practice
Cultural fit criteria
- Share knowledge of tools and techniques with the wider team, community, both developers and non-developers
- Encourage communication across multiple development teams to identify strategic requirements and dependencies
- Experience of working with multi-vendor teams across multiple projects
- Experience of collaboration with multiple organisational stakeholders with the aim to achieve a single objective
- Experience of transferring knowledge to permanent staff within a client organisation
- Evidence of working with multidisciplinary, agile service teams
- Able to explain technical things to non-technical people, and non-technical things to technical people
- Evidence of your ability and approach to deploy multiple resources at customer locations, specifically in the North West
Capped time and materials
Additional assessment methods
- Case study
- Work history