Maritime and Coastguard Agency, Southampton HQ

CRS EXTRANET REPLACEMENT BETA PHASE

39 Incomplete applications

35 SME, 4 large

10 Completed applications

9 SME, 1 large

Important dates

Published
Tuesday 23 February 2021
Deadline for asking questions
Tuesday 2 March 2021 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Tuesday 9 March 2021 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Summary of the work
Improve the current Coastguard Rescue Service Extranet by replacing and modernising the website (CLoud or SaaS) to meet needs of our Coastguard Officers, their managers and content owners. Future service must have appropriate security and authorisation, system maintenance, and management information capabilities in place and output adheres to GDS Standard.
Latest start date
Monday 12 April 2021
Expected contract length
9 Months
Location
No specific location, for example they can work remotely
Organisation the work is for
Maritime and Coastguard Agency, Southampton HQ
Budget range
£150K inclusive of VAT

About the work

Why the work is being done
The CRS extranet enables and informs the Coastguard Rescue Teams & Coastguard Rescue Officers (CRO), and helps them to carry out their duties in a consistent and safe manner. This enables HMCG to fulfil its responsibilities towards the CROs who will use the new provision.
Problem to be solved
"The Coastguard Rescue Service (CRS) website is a central repository of guidance to support the effective operation of the Coastguard Rescue Service.  The system contains operational procedures, guidance and documentation for all aspects of the CRS activities.
The site is on a Live-Link platform; however, the supplier has withdrawn support for this service and the newest version of software has not been procured.  The platform is not protected by any level of support contract and is maintained by I&T under a “best endeavours” approach"
Who the users are and what they need to do
As a Coastguard Officer I need to be able to access information quickly and easily on a variety of devices so that important guidance is readily available and can be acknowlegded so that I can complete my volunteer activity efficiently and compliantly.
As a Coastguard Officer manager I need to be able to review and maintain the information held on the site so that the information is kept up to date and relevant so that the Coastguard Officers can achieve their tasks.
Early market engagement
"Discovery session was completed with our Coastguard Team, highlighting:
- lack of search functionality
- outdated and slow
- There have been issues with opening and downloading documents
- Management Information data is not collected from the the current site
Alpha phase has been completed, providing a prototype of the intentions going forward, regarding look, feel and navigational structure"
Any work that’s already been done
Discovery and Alpha. Output Documents can be shared from these phases as part of Beta activity
Existing team
Internal MCA teams from the Coastguard and IT directorates
Current phase
Beta

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
HQ (Southampton, SO15 1EG) and remote
Working arrangements
The individual should be available to work with the project team within office hours (09:00 - 17:30). The individual should be able to access the MCA Office 365 site
Security clearance
Not required

Additional information

Additional terms and conditions
Standard Contract

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
  • Have experience designing services for users who access the site using multiple devices (laptop, mobile, tablet etc.)
  • Evidence of proficiency in UX, UI and interaction design techniques
  • Evidence of proficiency in creating prototypes, to support user research, stakeholders and design team decision making
  • Demonstrable experience of responsive UI design and a good understanding of front end development techniques
  • Well rounded technical understanding to collaborate on technical specifications
  • Experience of planning, documenting and communicating the design process and concepts in a clear, concise manner
  • Experience of delivering cloud based or SaaS based website solutions
  • Experience of delivering solutions used open source based CMS
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Experience of GDS guidelines and principles
  • Experience working in Agile environment using SCRUM or other Agile frameworks
  • Previous experience working with Public Sector clients
  • Knowledge across the digital design sector applying research in new design technologies to the benefit of the team and service

How suppliers will be evaluated

All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.

How many suppliers to evaluate
3
Proposal criteria
  • Technical Solution
  • Approach and Methodology
  • How the approach or solution meets user needs
  • How the approach or solution meets your organisation's policy or goal
  • Estimated timeframes for the work
  • How they've identified risks and dependencies and offered approaches to manage them
  • Team Structure
  • Value for Money
Cultural fit criteria
  • Work transparently and collaboratively in a no-blame culture, encouraging all to fail fast and learn from mistakes
  • Demonstrate experience of supporting and coaching other team members Strong team working experience with the ability to think and problem solve independently
  • Engaging with team to create an environment for knowledge sharing
  • Evidence their confidence to challenge the status quo
  • Evidence of taking responsibility for their Work
Payment approach
Fixed price
Additional assessment methods
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

60%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

20%

Questions asked by suppliers

1. Would you consider WordPress?
Yes - wordpress would be acceptable
2. "There’s mention of both an alpha and experience with open-source CMS. Could you please extrapolate on what has been done and the technical preference or ideas so far held?
Does that experience requirement suggest that there’s no place for any proprietary or non OSI Open Source software in the solution? Would “source available” style solutions be entertained?"
"Alpha - Defined navigational paths, look and feel, content groups, user requirements. No re-usable code has been written
Open source CMS is a requirement to satisfy GDS guidelines"
3. Can you share the output documents from Discovery and Alpha, to help us understand more of the scope and intent for Beta?
This output can be shared with the shortlisted organisations
4. Can developers work completely remote?
Fully remote is possible, with details of the intended communications plan. Site visits may still be requested if allowed, and can be discussed on a case by case basis
5. Is migration of content from Live Wire expected to be included in the scope, or will the buyer be handling population of content into the CMS?
We will not be migrating from the livelink content, however the scope is expecting to deliver the site with the new pages populated with the conent proivided
6. Do you have a preferred technology / CMS to use for this project?
"We have defined requirements for the CMS, but have not selected one at this time.
The platform will be open source and it will be flexible and easy to use, and can be implemented in an Azure or AWS environment with a strong preference to use serverless technologies or SaaS services. With content only being accessed via log-in
Regular security updates as required to be managed as part of the support contract.
MCA/HMCG communications team will be responsible for updating website content after launch and will require training on the CMS
It must adhere to:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/technology-code-of-practice/technology-code-of-practice
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/accessibility-requirements-for-public-sector-websites-and-apps#procuring-an-accessible-website-or-app "
7. Please can you clarify the MCA’s position regarding a CMS for the re-built extranet? Does the Agency have a preferred CMS? Has the Alpha product used a particular CMS? And is there a preference for a Linux-based solution, e.g. Joomla or a Windows-based solution, e.g. Umbraco?
"We have defined requirements for the CMS, but have not selected one at this time.
The platform will be open source and it will be flexible and easy to use, and can be implemented in an Azure or AWS environment with a strong preference to use serverless technologies or SaaS services. With content only being accessed via log-in
Regular security updates as required to be managed as part of the support contract.
MCA/HMCG communications team will be responsible for updating website content after launch and will require training on the CMS
It must adhere to:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/technology-code-of-practice/technology-code-of-practice
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/accessibility-requirements-for-public-sector-websites-and-apps#procuring-an-accessible-website-or-app "
8. We note that the MCA has an Office 365 site. So long as it met all necessary criteria, would the Agency consider an Office 365-based extranet?
"We have defined requirements for the CMS, but have not selected one at this time.
The platform will be open source and it will be flexible and easy to use, and can be implemented in an Azure or AWS environment with a strong preference to use serverless technologies or SaaS services. With content only being accessed via log-in
Regular security updates as required to be managed as part of the support contract.
MCA/HMCG communications team will be responsible for updating website content after launch and will require training on the CMS
It must adhere to:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/technology-code-of-practice/technology-code-of-practice
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/accessibility-requirements-for-public-sector-websites-and-apps#procuring-an-accessible-website-or-app "
9. Please can you clarify who completed the Discovery and Alpha. Thanks
It is not policy to disclose the name of the company completing discovery/alpha, we will provide copies of the outputs to the short listed companies
10. Can you clarify what you expect to see in reply to the question asking for Experience of GDS guidelines and principles?
Please define experience of working with the standard in the previous projects
11. Evidence of Previous experience working with Public Sector clients.
Are you expecting evidence in relation to a similar scoped project or experience in general working with the public sector
Please define what experience you have of working within the public sector, working on IT projects would be beneficial
12. "SOW states “appropriate security and authorisation, system maintenance, and management information “
1. Are the security and authorisation requirements defined in a policy (or will NCSC guidance suffice?)
2. Length of time system maintenance be required?
3. What analytical information is needed for MI?"
1. Security and authorisation as per NCSC will suffice. Authorisation will need to interface with internal system(s)
2. System maintenance - early life support of the system would be expected to be provided, the length of the support can be confirmed on tender, but a minimum of 1 month post go-live is expected, and ongoing cost of the cloud based system must include support.
3. Site, page and user usage metrics
13. Can the website be hosted anywhere in “Western Europe” or does it have to be hosted in the UK?
As both AWS and Azure have a UK presence we would expect the site to be UK hosted
14. Is the authority expecting the agency to mentor in the running of Agile frameworks, or would like the agency to integrate with the existing inhouse team and partners?
What other delivery partners (other external agencies) can the successful agency expect to collaborate with in the delivery of this project? This is in reference to their fields of expertise?
There is no need to mentor the internal teams on Agile. A delivery manager will be assigned from the IT delivery team. There will be a close working relationship with internal teams within the agency.
There are no other delivery partners planned to be working on this project
15. In reference to question 8, we have experience of delivering solutions used open source based CMS. However, we would like to clarify on this project if we can expect development as part of the scope, or is the authority is looking for agency partners who have experience in designing and developing on open source based CMS?
Although not specified, is running user research studies (including compliant recruiting and incentivising participants) expected from the successful agency team as part of the project delivery?
The requirement is expected be using your experience of designing and developing on a nopend source CMS. User research will be used, however we will be using an internal team to lead that aspect of the project.
16. Under “Working arrangements” you’ve mentioned “The individual”, do you foresee the resources you require at present from an agency will be 1 person or a team of people?
The size of the team should be made clear in your application. We are not setting any expectation with the phraseology of working arrangements, please take it as individual(s)
17. Can you indicate the number of users of the extranet?
There are approximately 3500 users
18. Does the service need to use the gov.uk styles, components and patterns as published in https://design-system.service.gov.uk/?
We are bound by the need to follow the GDS standard, however we do not necessarily need to use the gov.uk styles
19. When awarding at the end of phase 2, do you include the phase 1 scores?
Stage 1 scores are used purely to shortlist tenders, and the second stage is assessed on the submission at that stage of the tender process. However it should be noted that the initial application maybe referenced to when evaluating our final responses
20. Regarding question 5, what technical specifications are you likely to want to collaborate on?
Technical understanding is required to input into discussions with our architecture team regaring best practice set up of the solution, and to also input into the technical solution for authorisation routes required to verify the users onto the site
21. In relation to this question – ‘Well rounded technical understanding to collaborate on technical specifications’.
Do you mean, the individuals who will be collaborating on this technical specification, will have varying levels of technical expertise and will require different levels of support.
Technical understanding is required to input into discussions with our architecture team regarding best practice set up of the solution, and to also input into the technical solution for authorisation routes required to verify the users onto the site
22. Could you please provide your understanding/thinking behind the question below?
‘Well rounded technical understanding to collaborate on technical specifications’
Technical understanding is required to input into discussions with our architecture team regarding best practice set up of the solution, and to also input into the technical solution for authorisation routes required to verify the users onto the site
23. During implementation, will the supplier be required to factor in the cost for the infrastructure within the set budget or is the budget for infrastructure in addition to the mentioned budget and SaaS env. will be procured directly by the MCA?
The budget includes the total cost including any hosting or infrastructure costs.

The deadline for asking questions about this opportunity was Tuesday 2 March 2021.