West Berkshire Council

Review and Renew Content Design and User Testing Capability

5 Incomplete applications

4 SME, 1 large

0 Completed applications

Important dates

Friday 19 November 2021
Deadline for asking questions
Friday 26 November 2021 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Friday 3 December 2021 at 11:59pm GMT


Off-payroll (IR35) determination
Contracted out service: the off-payroll rules do not apply
Summary of the work
We require a partner to provide additional content design capability alongside the in-house team to review and re-write our website content and its structure, then user test key sections.
Latest start date
Thursday 20 January 2022
Expected contract length
Up to five months
No specific location, for example they can work remotely
Organisation the work is for
West Berkshire Council
Budget range
Up to £15,000

About the work

Why the work is being done
To improve customer satisfaction through offering a better standard of content to the council’s service users by:

• Reviewing our website page content to ensure it is up to date and accurately reflects information about services and initiatives delivered by the council.

• Reviewing the structure of our updated content to ensure there is an optimal customer journey through the site, and it can be found easily using external and our own search engines.

• User testing updated content and site structures, and proposing any appropriate changes.

• Proposing changes to our content design model to ensure it follows best practice, by taking a more proactive role to content design.
Problem to be solved
With over eight million page views in 2020, serving an average of over twenty thousand people a week, our online services and information are now the main and only channel some customers choose to interact with the council.

The last major review of our website content and structure happened in 2015, and to ensure our online content meets the needs of our customers we are currently undertaking a full review.

We are now looking for an external partner to work alongside the existing team in order to complete this work and to carry out user testing of key areas of the site.
Who the users are and what they need to do
The information contained on our website covers 100s of services so the needs of users are wide and varied. A broad user story would be:

As a resident or business
I need to understand more about a council function or service
So that I have a better understanding of if and how to use it
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
The in-house team have already started reviewing and re-writing our content, and one section is now complete: https://www.westberks.gov.uk/rubbishandrecycling
Existing team
The existing team working on this project consists of a content designer and a digital designer, alongside subject matter experts from across the organisation.
Current phase
Not applicable

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
Remotely, although on a small number of occasions there many be a requirement to work from our Market Street offices in Newbury, Berkshire.
Working arrangements
The majority of this work can be completed remotely although on a small number of occasions there many be a requirement to work from our Market Street offices in Newbury, Berkshire.

Any provision for expenses should be included in the overall fixed price for the work.
Security clearance

Additional information

Additional terms and conditions

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 of user-centred content design and the ability to articulate complex policies and concepts in a clear and succinct way
  • Experience of working with in-house content designers and wider digital teams
  • Experience of working with a wide range of stakeholders and service delivery teams across a diverse organisation
  • Experience of working efficiently and effectively remotely
  • Experience of designing content to meet the public sector accessibility regulations the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018
  • Experience of user testing content and suggesting improvements based on the outcomes
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Has worked with local government organisations
  • Can pass skills and experience on to the in-house team
  • Can use Google Analytics and interpret relevant data

How suppliers will be evaluated

All suppliers will be asked to provide a written proposal.

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • Describe the size and shape of the proposed team - roles and experience of the people delivering the work
  • Demonstrate how you will work remotely with a large and diverse range of subject experts and stakeholders
  • Describe how you will work with the in-house content and digital design resource
  • Describe how you will provide value for money
  • Demonstrate your approach to user testing and incorporating its findings into the work
Cultural fit criteria
  • Can design content which takes account of different needs including disadvantaged groups
  • Is a local micro, small or medium enterprise
Payment approach
Fixed price
Additional assessment methods
  • Work history
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. Are you expecting, within the stated budget of £15k, for the supplier to recruit participants as well as conduct (include moderating) the user test sessions, or just to plan the session and help interpret the results?
The council will be able to recruit participants. We would look to the supplier to conduct (include moderating) the user test sessions, to plan the session, and help interpret the results.

Suppliers may wish to offer an option of recruiting a wider range of participants at an additional cost.
2. Is there capacity for the council to recruit participants for any user testing?
The council will be able to recruit participants.

Suppliers may wish to offer an option of recruiting a wider range of participants at an additional cost.
3. What project management methodology is the existing team using internally?
The project management methodology used by the existing team is based on PRINCE2.
4. Is this contract for the supplier to be offering support on an adhoc basis or is there a backlog of user stories to be resolved in contract period?
There is a backlog of user stories to be resolved in the contract period.
5. What CMS or website framework is the West Berkshire Council site built on, and are there any limiting design parameters expected?
Our website is built on Goss Interactive's digital platform and uses the Cruise theme. You can see an overview of the standard components at https://frameworks.gossinteractive.com/cruise.
6. Assuming content redesign and proof of concept through testing are the main deliverables, would there be a need for design to developer engagement and briefing for content design that requires developer input?
Content should use the templates available as part of the theme we are using for the website. You can see the standard components available as part of the theme here: https://frameworks.gossinteractive.com/cruise

The deadline for asking questions about this opportunity was Friday 26 November 2021.