This opportunity is closed for applications

The deadline was Thursday 15 April 2021
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

Barring Referral Service - Beta MVP Digital Service

9 Incomplete applications

8 SME, 1 large

6 Completed applications

2 SME, 4 large

Important dates

Published
Thursday 1 April 2021
Deadline for asking questions
Thursday 8 April 2021 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Thursday 15 April 2021 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Summary of the work
Provide skilled resources forming an agile digital team to design and build an MVP digital service in BETA for organisations to make online Barring referrals to the Disclosure and Barring Service.
The service will re-use elements of existing DBS Digital code base and AWS infrastructure for the Barring Referral Service.
Latest start date
Thursday 1 July 2021
Expected contract length
Max 2-years, with break-clause (further assessment & approval), plus optional max 6-month extension.
Location
North West England
Organisation the work is for
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
Budget range
The total full-term contract budget is up to £3.271m, Excluding VAT, and is subject to, amongst other elements, a break-clause, estimated at 9-months from commencement, to account for the dependency on the subsequent requirement for a Private Beta Assessment and the associated further Government Spend Control Approval for progression to the Public Beta phase, and will include all development activity including user research, design and development.

About the work

Why the work is being done
The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 legislation places obligations on certain organisations to refer individuals who may have harmed, or may have caused harm to, a child or adult to Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) for consideration by DBS of barring that individual from working in the future with children and/or adults.

Our goal is to:
- Provide an online service to organisations so they can make barring referrals to DBS so they can easily comply with safeguarding legislation and improve the quality of referrals.
- Provide a trusted service that provides organisations with an open, easily accessible online method for online barring referrals hosted on Gov.uk.
- Increase the number of barring referrals made by organisations.
- Increase the quality of barring referrals.

MVP will need to be in Private Beta by no later than the end of March 2022 but ideally before the end of December 2021.
Problem to be solved
To provide skilled resources to form an agile digital team to design and build an MVP digital service in BETA for organisations to make online Barring referrals to the Disclosure and Barring Service.
The service will re-use elements of the existing DBS Digital code base and AWS infrastructure for the Barring Referral Service.
The skilled resources should include:
Product Owner
Delivery / Scrum Manger
DevOps Engineer
Developer (Front End)
Developer (Integration/Middle Layer)
Tester
Content Designer
Business Analyst
User Researcher
Performance Analyst
Technical Author
Lead Architect
System Integration Architect
Service Designer
Security Architect
Data Engineer
Robotics Developer
Who the users are and what they need to do
As an organisation I want to know who I can refer to DBS for barring so that I can meet my obligations under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006.
As an organisation I want to be able to make a barring referral online so that it’s more secure and reliable than the postal service.
As an organisation I want to be able to be notified electronically that my barring referral has been received by DBS so that I don’t have to spend time contacting DBS.
As DBS I want to be able to receive online barring referrals so that we can improve the quality and number of referrals.
Early market engagement
None.
Any work that’s already been done
The Discovery stage has been completed and the Alpha Stage was completed March 2021.
Both Alpha Stage assessments, and Beta Stage spend controls, up to and including Private Beta, were approved March 2021 also.
The outputs of these stages will be made available to the successful supplier.
Existing team
The existing team includes a Service Owner, User Researcher and Business Analyst.
The successful supplier will be working alongside DBS Digital staff in order to successfully develop this service into Public Beta via Private Beta, following subsequent assessments and the necessary additional approvals to progress to Public Beta, and on the existing architecture.
Current phase
Beta

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
Liverpool and Darlington.
10 Shannon Court, Liverpool, L3 1QY;
Stephenson House, Alderman Best Way, Darlington, DL1 9FA.
While most of the work shall be carried out at the Liverpool office, there may be limited occasions when the buyer requires the supplier’s staff to work from the Darlington office or another location.
Working arrangements
DBS Digital are currently working from home due to coronavirus COVID-19.
If normal working practice resumes, we expect a minimum of 3 days of the working week shall be on site 09:00-17:00 Monday - Friday (excluding Travel and Lunch).
The team must use agile Scrum methodologies, with regular stand ups and show and tells.
Security clearance
The Supplier’s personnel will be required to have or obtain SC security clearance.
The expectation is that all such personnel and/or skilled resource will have the requisite security clearance needed before commencement of any work.

Additional information

Additional terms and conditions
Contract break-clause for Private-Beta Assessment and Public-Beta Spend Approval.
Supplier provides range of skilled resources forming a digital team as required by DBS throughout contract.
Resources must fall within IR35 rules.
Development must meet Government Digital Service Standards and supplier must participate in Public and Private-Beta assessments.
Service must meet WCAG 2.1 level-AA minimum, work with most common assistive technologies, be built upon DBS Digital Cloud bases AWS infrastructure, use current DBS Digital code bases currently where possible.
Team must work with relevant DBS professional communities using their ways of working and sharing knowledge as set out by each community.

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
  • Evidence successful delivery of a high-profile, public facing safeguarding digital service within Government in a highly regulated environment.
  • Evidence successful use of developing digital services to the GDS Design Principles.
  • Evidence successful development of digital services that meet the GDS Digital Service Standard.
  • Evidence successful planning and delivering user-centred digital services to Government.
  • Evidence experience of the GDS service assessment process.
  • Evidence of successful implementation of digital technology that delivers against the GDS Technology Code of Practice.
  • Evidence the successful building of digital services that meet GDS open source standards.
  • Evidence experience of keeping up to date with Gov APIs, services, libraries and toolkits.
  • Evidence of successful integration experience with GDS services such as Pay and Notify.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including using relevant case studies, experience of building digital services within AWS cloud.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including using relevant case studies, experience of building services that comply with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0/1 AA standard.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including using relevant case studies, experience in using Agile/Scrum methodology to iteratively architect/develop high quality government digital services.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including using relevant case studies, experience of providing skilled digital resources to form a client-side digital team.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Successfully demonstrate the necessary skills and experience of providing on the job coaching and mentoring on agile delivery and specialist digital skills to the client’s ‘in house team’.
  • Successfully demonstrate the necessary skills and experience of working with a policy area within a central government department to deliver digital transformation to meet a policy objective.
  • Successfully demonstrate the necessary skills and experience of working with a wide range of user groups including business stakeholders, civil society organisations, Government and the general public.

How suppliers will be evaluated

All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.

How many suppliers to evaluate
3
Proposal criteria
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, the successful resilience of the proposed resource pool.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, the successful ability to consistently fulfil the technical resource.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, the successful approach and methodology to resourcing to ensure that services offered are within IR35.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, the approach to co-working with DBS in an agile environment.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, how best practice in Agile Governance has been used to deliver successful digital services.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, examples of your Delivery Metrics on digital services.
  • Fully evidence comprehensive and detailed capped time/materials pricing and methodology for all resource/roles rates, materials and expenses, both off and on-rate card, and how it all provides value for money.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence approach to co-working remotely with DBS.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence approach to managing the account.
Cultural fit criteria
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, evidence of strong Economic, Environmental and Social Values.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, demonstrable evidence of maintaining a no-blame culture.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, approach to how to encourage people to experiment, iterate and learn from their mistakes.
  • Effectively demonstrate and evidence, including with the use of relevant case studies as appropriate, your approach to how knowledge and experience sharing will be maintained with other team members.
Payment approach
Capped time and materials
Additional assessment methods
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

40%

Cultural fit

5%

Price

55%

Questions asked by suppliers

1. Will an extension of 2 additional days be added to cover the application period lost to Good Friday and Easter Monday?
Sorry but unfortunately no. The mandatory 2-week period and associated deadline timings is set by the Digital Marketplace platform and is system generated and controlled. Having also further consulted with CCS I can confirm that an opportunity's closing date can no longer be extended on the Digital Marketplace once it is published. For Digital outcomes opportunities, the 2-week period set by the Digital Marketplace for applications is dependent on the date of publication and doesn't take into account any public holidays or weekends. All other questions will be answered en masse and in due course too.
2. Can you expand a little more on what you mean by a “public facing safeguarding digital service” in Q1. Do you mean that we have to have worked at DBS or Disclosure Scotland to be able to get a 2 on this question?
No, you don't have to have worked at DBS or Disclosure Scotland. You need to demonstrate that you have successfully delivered a high-profile public facing digital service within a highly regulated, Government based (which includes the wider Public Sector, such as Police, NHS, Councils, etc.) safeguarding environment.
3. Who delivered the Discovery and Alpha?
The Discovery and the Alpha phase were both delivered by a joint venture between DBS and a third party, CGI.
4. Can we have access to the end of Alpha report?
The end of Alpha report will be made available to the successful applicant.
5. In terms of Cloud strategy, does DBS also use Azure or GCP cloud and would it need a multi-cloud skills ?
No, it's AWS only and you wouldn't require multi-cloud skills.
6. Is there an incumbent supplier?
DBS does not currently work with an incumbent supplier for the new Barring Referral Service. The Discovery and the Alpha phase were delivered by a joint venture between DBS and an incumbent third-party supplier, CGI.
7. With reference to proposal criteria 3, are you looking for the supplier to demonstrate and evidence that they have processes in place to manage IR35 appropriately, or is this indicating this contract will fall inside of IR35.
The contract resources must fall within IR35 rules and the supplier must also demonstrate how they are going to ensure that this is achieved, and process managed for commencement and throughout the life of the contract.
8. Is there an incumbent supplier?
DBS does not currently work with an incumbent supplier for the new Barring Referral Service. The Discovery and the Alpha phase were delivered by a joint venture between DBS and an incumbent third-party supplier, CGI.
9. Who delivered the discovery and alpha phases for this work, Please?
The Discovery and the Alpha phase were both delivered by a joint venture between DBS and a third party, CGI.
10. If Service/Run is required as part of this contract, should this be accounted for within the highlighted £3.271m budget/2 year contract length?
This contract and the Contract Budget Value of up to £3.271m, covers both Private Beta and Public Beta. Progression to Public Beta and the remaining element of the up to £3.271m, is subject to further assessments and spend approvals.
11. Can we clarify whether all suppliers at the initial stage will be required to provide a proposal or will this only be required from those three suppliers who will progress to the assessment stage/presentation?
Proposals are only required from those suppliers who are successfully shortlisted to go through to the subsequent proposal and evaluation stage. However, DBS are expecting all suppliers to successfully demonstrate and provide evidence of how they meet the essential and nice-to-have skills and experience.
12. Is there an opportunity to ask further questions after the selection stage and in advance of the assessment stage?
Yes, for those suppliers shortlisted to go through to the proposal and evaluation stage.
13. The Additional terms and conditions section states that ‘Resources must fall within IR35 rules.’ For clarity, are DBS seeking to engage individual contract staff for work determined as within the ‘off payroll working rules’ (as defined by HMRC) which specifies its application to individual contract staff who would have been an employee if they were providing their services directly to the end client? With this arrangement the direct day to day management resides with the client rather than an outputs / deliverables based approach and measured contract.
DBS are not seeking to engage individual contract resources but engage with a supplier who can provide all of the necessary resources under this contract. The contract resources must fall within IR35 rules and the supplier must also demonstrate how they are going to ensure that this is achieved, and process managed for commencement and throughout the life of the contract.
14. Within the Work Setup DBS have expressed an expectation of a minimum of 3 days a week on site. As a proficient agile and scrum specialist our teams work at increased productivity within our northwest based office while supporting full collaborative working with our customers. Our facilities can be accredited to SC and we operate List X facilities. Are DBS flexible on the work structure to allow the chosen supplier to work from their own location on a predominant or more regular basis?
Notwithstanding current DBS home-working arrangements due to the ongoing coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, DBS' current expectation is that the supplier resource will predominantly work with DBS Digital resource out of the Liverpool office. We currently expect this to be a minimum of 3 days of the working week. There may be limited occasions when DBS requires the supplier’s resource to work from the Darlington office or another location.
15. What RPA (Robotics Process Automation) requirements do you envisage as part of the solution?
Working with DBS Digital resource, we expect the successful supplier's resource to determine what if any Robotics Process Automation (RPA) is required in the solution.
16. What data engineering requirements do you envisage as part of the solution?
Working with DBS Digital resource, we expect the successful supplier's resource to determine what if any data engineering is required in the solution.
17. Can you confirm whether ‘capped time and materials’ referred to in payment approach relates to a Fixed price/Capped price being expected? If so how will changes to scope be managed?
Yes, capped time and materials refers to the supplier's total proposed resource and solution cost, resulting in a limit on how much DBS would have to pay for the work. Additionally, each individual daily resource charge would be fixed for the contract duration and presented as a daily rate card including expenses and an equivalent daily rate card excluding separately listed expenses.
If a DBS agreed scope change falls within the Contract Budget Value, then there isn't an issue. However, if a DBS agreed scope change results in potentially exceeding the Contract Budget Value then further approvals would be required.
18. Can DBS confirm what the total full-term contract budget of up to £3.271m refers to please. The assumption is this does not include budget consumed by Discovery and Alpha phases but covers work from July 1st up to and including private BETA?
Yes, we can confirm that this does not include budget consumed by Discovery and Alpha phases. This contract and the Contract Budget Value of up to £3.271m, covers both Private Beta and Public Beta. Progression to Public Beta and the remaining element of the Contract Budget Value up to £3.271m, is subject to further assessments and spend approvals.
19. DBS Digital are currently working from home due to coronavirus COVID-19. If normal working practice resumes, we expect a minimum of 3 days of the working week shall be on site – are all the roles expected to be on site 3 days per week and is the expectation that ‘normal working practices will resume from 12 June onwards?
Notwithstanding current DBS home-working arrangements due to the ongoing coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, DBS' current expectation is that the supplier resource will predominantly work with DBS Digital resource out of the Liverpool office. We currently expect this to be a minimum of 3 days of the working week. There may be limited occasions when the buyer requires the supplier’s staff to work from the Darlington office or another location. DBS has not yet agreed a date for when 'normal working practices' will resume.
20. DBS Digital are currently working from home due to coronavirus COVID-19. If normal working practice resumes, we expect a minimum of 3 days of the working week shall be on site – are all the roles expected to be on site 3 days per week and is the expectation that ‘normal working practices will resume from 12 June onwards?
Notwithstanding current DBS home-working arrangements due to the ongoing coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, DBS' current expectation is that the supplier resource will predominantly work with DBS Digital resource out of the Liverpool office. We currently expect this to be a minimum of 3 days of the working week. There may be limited occasions when the buyer requires the supplier’s staff to work from the Darlington office or another location. DBS has not yet agreed a date for when 'normal working practices' will resume.