Met Office

Digital Channels partners

Incomplete applications

9
Incomplete applications
7 SME, 2 large

Completed applications

23
Completed applications
15 SME, 8 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Wednesday 5 July 2017
Deadline for asking questions Wednesday 12 July 2017 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Wednesday 19 July 2017 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work Define a new creative approach for Met Office consumer digital channels. Maintain and develop the current Met Office app. Develop a new responsive website to replace the current desktop and mobile websites. Work as a partner to provide market expertise and perform discovery for new features and lifecycle developments.
Latest start date Friday 25 August 2017
Expected contract length 2 years
Location South West England
Organisation the work is for Met Office
Budget range The agreed budget is aligned to the delivery programme across 2 years to the end of March 2019 and will encompass alpha through to delivery, with appropriate pre-agreed spend allocated on a phased basis. Overall the budget will be of the order of £2.25M to £2.75M.

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done The Met Office needs to reach and engage with all UK citizens to protect life, well-being and property from weather and severe weather. Our website and apps are key, providing localised weather in detail and on the move. To maintain and grow our position in the market, we need to ensure our forecasts and warnings are available to a wider range of devices, providing an outstanding user experience.
Our focus will be on upgrading to one responsive website, as well as continuing to evolve our weather app to better meet user needs.
Problem to be solved We are seeking a partner to provide market expertise and user research, support the ongoing development of our consumer digital portfolio, including the development of a new responsive website, and provide support and maintenance for the app.
We are looking to develop a single optimised, responsive site, which effectively and efficiently meets user needs, with a public beta released by early Dec 2017.
This work will also cover the development of a consistent, cohesive visual design to be implemented across our consumer digital portfolio, and delivering new user-led, added value features to our app, to ensure we remain competitive.
Who the users are and what they need to do Our remit is to provide weather and severe weather warning information to UK citizens at home and abroad, therefore we have a very large, general user base.

As a UK citizen I need to access Met Office weather information, no matter what device I am using So that I can plan my activities appropriately.

As a UK citizen I need to access National Severe Weather Warnings information from the Met Office, no matter what device I am using
So that I know when severe weather might affect me and can take action to ensure I stay safe and protect property.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done Currently we have a desktop website and a mobile website both in live stage. A site audit of of these is in progress. Analysis of these sites will provide a basis for discovery.
Our Met Office Weather App is also live, having been launched in May 2016. We have a backlog of ideas but need to have a period of re-focus on the user and discovery for new ideas.
We have recently developed a new customer segmentation model for the Met Office and refreshed our weather icon set and National Severe Weather Warnings service.
Existing team The Met Office has an existing web development and support team and has already on-boarded an infrastructure supplier. The new supplier will be expected to work with these resources to support and deliver new and existing functionality. Met Office Product Owners will direct the development. The supplier will be expected to provide UX and UR capability and potentially supply resource to augment the internal Met Office team where gaps are identified up-skilling if required. For the app, no internal capability exists and the supplier will be expected to support the current app and supply development and testing capability.
Current phase Live

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place For the web The work will be to deliver software to virtual environments hence can be performed from any appropriate physical location, however the liaison to agree the outcomes will mean that face to face working will be required. This will take place at either the supplier location, the Met Office, at Fitzroy Road, Exeter, Devon or at another appropriate location. A significant proportion of meetings and face to face working is expected to occur at the Met Office in Exeter.
Working arrangements The supplier is expected to work as an extension to our team. We will expect the team(s) to work face to face on a weekly basis with a significant proportion of time spent at the Met Office and potentially some time at the supplier’s site. The supplier will be expected to participate in regular agile ceremonies, such as Sprint Reviews, at the Met Office fortnightly and must have the ability to join regular and ad hoc meetings with the use of collaboration tools. Expenses will be as per the Met Office policy, which will be distributed to all shortlisted suppliers.
Security clearance The Met Office will review the accreditation documentation of prospective suppliers in accordance with their assertions on the Framework. These may include policies on security, code management, quality control and recruitment. Additionally, we may undertake individual clearance to BPSS or SC level for specific team members according to their role.

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions Standard terms used

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
  • A proven track record in delivering a broad digital strategy for enterprise partners - 15 points
  • User research skills and resources with the ability to translate findings into deliverable outcomes for web and app - 15 points
  • User experience leadership skills that will turn user insights into a deliverable strategy - 20 points
  • User experience design skills to work alongside internal Met Office teams to deliver those outcomes - 20 points
  • Front end development skills to mentor, train, support and if required, deliver those outcomes across web and app - 5 points
  • App development skills in iOS and Android with a wide portfolio of apps - 20 points
  • Experience in agile development and resources to support agile development (scrum master etc) – 5 points
Nice-to-have skills and experience

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 5
Proposal criteria
  • Approach and methodology
  • How the approach for both app and web will meet user needs by describing the proposed discovery strategy
  • How the approach or solution would meet our goals of reaching more users, whilst growing loyalty with our existing userbase
  • Key risks and dependencies of your proposed strategy and mitigations you would put in place to manage them
  • Proposed Team structure and capabilities on a phase by phase basis for the web strategy
  • Proposed team structure and capabilities for the support and delivery of the app strategy
  • Organisational capacity to provide additional or flexible capability aligned to the scheduled deliverable
  • Value for money
Cultural fit criteria
  • Alignment to the GDS digital principles with a ‘user first’ focus Embedded agile alignment
  • A culture of openness and collaboration A willingness and understanding of the principles involved in being a ‘strategic partner’ rather than a supplier
  • A flexible approach to communication, especially in the promotion of agile principles
  • A willingness to support co-location and face to face working where beneficial
  • A cohesive approach to working with internal capabilities
  • Evidence of thought leadership in the creative and strategic space
Payment approach Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

55%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

25%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Has the work that has already been done on this programme been undertaken by Met Office staff, contractors or is there an incumbent third party provider of such services? If there is an incumbent could you confirm why you have come to market for a replacement or additional supplier? An external third party supplier has done the work on the app. We are required by government procurement rules to re-tender every 2 years for external suppliers. The web work has traditionally been designed and developed internally; but we have gaps in our internal skillsets, which require augmentation from external expertise.
2. We would be able to deliver all of your website requirements to a very a high level of capability. In house we have the ability to work with web apps, however we cannot do native apps. Would you consider a supplier who can deliver on the website side of your requirements only? The Met Office wishes to secure a multi-channel approach with this opportunity and contract rather than a selection of contracts for individual suppliers. We would highlight that DOS2 encourages suppliers to collaborate where necessary to meet the requirements of the opportunity.
3. Could you clarify if you are looking for "partners" (plural) or "a partner" (single)? The Met Office wishes to secure a multi-channel approach with this opportunity and contract rather than a selection of contracts for individual suppliers. We would highlight that DOS2 encourages suppliers to collaborate where necessary to meet the requirements of the opportunity.
4. Are you looking for a single supplier or are you open to specialist suppliers for the various elements e.g. user research and insight The Met Office wishes to secure a multi-channel approach with this opportunity and contract rather than a selection of contracts for individual suppliers. We would highlight that DOS2 encourages suppliers to collaborate where necessary to meet the requirements of the opportunity.
5. Could you outline any specific technical infrastructure and languages that are in place that suppliers would need to work with, for both web and apps? The Met office favours open source technologies where possible and employs them where apprpriate The website sits on a CMS provided by Hippo/Bloomreach with use of freemarker template and the data will be surfaced and transformed via an AWS cloud infrastructure. The apps are native, Java and Swift
6. You say “For the app, no internal capability exists and the supplier will be expected to support the current app and supply development and testing capability.” We assume that the previous supplier will be involved in some form of knowledge transfer or exit to the new supplier? Does documentation exist? A short handover will take place with our existing supplier. Extensive documentation exists around the apps and the code is well commented. We will have received the code and documentation from our existing supplier under the transition provisions in the DOS Contract, which will be finalised by both parties with any transition to a supplier from this contract in mind.
7. What is the size of the current supplier app team to support it in production and make changes? The current team size has been flexible according to the development needs at the time, the smallest team has been two developers and one tester during times of reduced delivery.
8. Can you please clarify the following: “The supplier will be expected to provide UX and UR capability and potentially supply resource to augment the internal Met Office team where gaps are identified up-skilling if required.” Do you have any views on where gaps may be, how many, and what skills/technologies? We are seeking a supplier who could augment our web development team as and when gaps occur. The supplier will be expected to use their extensive UR and UX leadership skills to define the most appropriate strategy and advise how the team should be augmented, or upskilled, taking into account the current capability and the proposed outcomes. Other than app development capability, of which we have none, we expect the skills gaps to be in front end development, using open source technologies.
9. You say “The website sits on a CMS provided by Hippo/Bloomreach”. As part of the discovery and review for the site would you be open to considering other CMS’s and if so we presume they should be open source? The current choice of CMS was made after considerable analysis of our current and future technical and content needs. At this time, unless a future supplier could present a compelling business case, then no migration is planned.
10. Would near or off shore delivery be acceptable as part of “any physical location” as long as your other expectations regarding face to face are met? Excellent communications are essential to the partners being able to work together efficiently and effectively. We believe that this requires regular face-to-face meetings with minimal travel and expenses being incurred by the Met Office, as well as using other remote communications media.
11. You say both “For the web The work will be to deliver software to virtual environments hence can be performed from any appropriate physical location” and also “The supplier is expected to work as an extension to our team. We will expect the team(s) to work face to face on a weekly basis with a significant proportion of time spent at the Met Office and potentially some time at the supplier’s site.” These statements could be contradictory. We assume that you mean that elements of the team are expected to be on site but others may deliver from our offices? This assumption is accurate. The Met Office strongly feels that face-to-face collaboration is important to ensure technical and strategic alignment, however many routine technical activities can take place from any location. Hence we will work with the supplier to agree the best collaborative working approach and determine who needs to be on site, when and how long for.
12. You are looking for ‘A proven track record in delivering a broad digital strategy for enterprise partners’. Could you clarify whether you have already agreed a digital strategy for the Met Office or if you need support in defining this? A strategy for consumer digital has been agreed at board level. Evidence of the successful implementation of such strategies is what is being requested.
13. We understand every UK citizen is part of the user base but are there identified primary personas? We have recently developed a new segmentation model. Personas will need to be developed, in line with our new segmentation for the mobile responsive website, as part of the discovery phase. We would welcome a review of our personas on the app.
14. Does the creation of a new visual design include branding or does it include the creation of a design system to be used across channels? It does not include a brand redesign - It does include helping define (alongside internal creative and brand expertise) a digital design language across multiple channels.
15. You mention in the brief a new segmentation model. Can we have access to this? We are not able to share this at this stage. It may be shared as part of the next stage once a shortlist has been determined.
16. Is there a test hardness currently for both the website and mobile applications? If there is a test hardness what automatic testing do you use? Is it unit testing or UI testing? Any particular technologies? Partially automated UI and API regression testing exists for the current Met Office web/mobile web offering using Cucumber and Selenium WebDriver.
There is currently no CI pipeline for web/mobile web delivery although this pipeline is under consideration.
Manual testing remains (and is likely to remain) a key activity.
The mobile app has UI regression testing (currently Cucumber & Calabash) but not of all features ~80% coverage
17. You ask for "A proven track record in delivering a broad digital strategy for enterprise partners". We assume you are looking for evidence of how we have delivered the recommendations and outcomes from an agreed digital strategy, as opposed to working with the client to determine their strategy, please confirm. A strategy for consumer digital has been agreed at board level. Evidence of the successful implementation of such strategies is what is being requested.
18. Is the User Research needed to a) inform an existing strategy or b) develop a new strategy, c) or as part of delivery (e.g. in discovery, alpha, beta)? User Research is an integral part of delivering our consumer digital services. Therefore this will be required at both a strategic level and throughout delivery.
19. What roles & experience levels will the Met Office team commit to work alongside the supplier to deliver the next stage of your digital channels (e.g. scrum masters, architects, BAs, developers) We currently have a well established team of web developers including technical leadership, some test resource and some design resource. We also have dedicated Product Owners and a Senior Product Owner. We have no app development skills in-house. The team may flex from time to time and we are looking for a supplier who can augment gaps as they occur.