Awarded to User Central Ltd

Start date: Wednesday 31 May 2017
Value: £5,000
Company size: SME
Mid Sussex District Council

User Testing for the Redesign of a Council Website

15 Incomplete applications

15 SME, 0 large

8 Completed applications

7 SME, 1 large

Important dates

Friday 28 April 2017
Deadline for asking questions
Friday 5 May 2017 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Friday 12 May 2017 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
To undertake end to end user testing exercises in order to determine effective information architecture (navigation) for a district council website. We require the following: Card sorting, Tree testing, End product analysis, User testing
Latest start date
Saturday 20 May 2017
Expected contract length
6 Months
South East England
Organisation the work is for
Mid Sussex District Council
Budget range
£500 per day

About the work

Why the work is being done
The organisation will be updating its website in 2017 to create a more usable digital portal for residents to engage with their local services. In order to provide an effective solution, a logical structure must be determined.

The website launch has a deadline of September 2017.
Problem to be solved
Customer insight must be gained in order to understand their conceptual model of the website. Analysis of the paths that customers take in order to determine an effective structure for completing tasks and locating information. Awareness of resident opinion of where and how information and tasks should be grouped.
Who the users are and what they need to do
As a member of the public, I need to understand the logic of a website so that I can navigate to the services I need to access.

The website is primarily directed at Mid Sussex residents, but also contains information that may be relevant to anyone, for example: tourism and local attractions, parking in the area, etc. As such, the primary testing group would be: Residents of Mid Sussex (Aged between 18 – 80)
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
Existing team
The supplier will be working with the Digital Team at Mid Sussex District Council.
Current phase

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
Mid Sussex District Council, Haywards Heath
Working arrangements
Work is expected to be carried out remotely, i.e. not at Mid Sussex District Council, but must be carried out with the target demographic, which is Mid Sussex residents.

Some on-site meetings may be required, but the majority of correspondence can be carried out electronically/telephonically.
Security clearance

Additional information

Additional terms and conditions
Total expected contract length over 6 Months. We expect no more than 10 working, non-consecutive, days: Phase 1 - Card Sorting by June, Phase 2 - Tree Testing to be completed by mid-June, Phase 3 - End product analysis to be completed by mid-September.

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
  • Recruitment of participants from specific demographics
  • Payment and incentivisation of participants
  • Discovery-phase user testing, i.e. card sorting, tree-testing, questionnaires, etc.
  • Analysis of results of user testing
Nice-to-have skills and experience
Suggestions of approaches to take for information architecture based on completed analysis

How suppliers will be evaluated

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • Participant recruitment approach
  • Timeline of work
  • Breakdown of costs
  • Evidence of value for money
  • Previous experience in similar cases
Cultural fit criteria
  • Demonstrate successful collaborative working with a public body
  • Be transparent and collaborative when making decisions
Payment approach
Fixed price
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Work history
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. Could you confirm if this role falls inside or outside IR35 please?
This requirement is for the completion of a project so IR35 does not apply.
2. Is further research being undertaken? Is the client open to suggestion for further research and design activities?
Yes, further research is being undertaken. If opportunities for further research or design activities are encountered then we will happily listen to suggestions.
3. Hello, a couple of questions, please:
1. Under summary of work, "End product analysis and User testing" are stated. To clarify: do you require one-on-one usability testing, an expert review or both? And if usability testing, will this be based on: Wireframes/Prototype? The finished version of the website? Or something else?
2. Budget: The indicated range is 10 days at £500 per day. Please confirm if this excludes participant recruitment fees and incentives. For the requested exercises, a decent number of participants would need to be recruited. Thank you in advance for your time.
1) We do not require an expert evaluation. We are looking for usability testing with the target audience. The usability testing will be carried out on a prototype.
2) No, participant incentives are not included in the budget. However, we expect these costs to be low as we have successfully obtained adequate participants in previous user testing by offering a “chance to win” rather than a flat fee.
4. Contract you mentioned fixed price but above on contract price you mentioned £ 500 per day - clarify correct pricing please
We have a fixed price of £500 per day for ten days work. We do not expect the work to take any more than ten days so we do not expect to pay any more than a total of £5000. However, if there are extraordinary circumstances then we will reconsider additional pricing.
5. Can I use Haywards Heath local council residents age group (18 - 75-80) range person to do usability tests
We are looking for participants from within all of Mid Sussex; this includes Haywards Heath, but is not limited to it. We would expect participants from more than just Haywards Heath as the audience for the website spans all of Mid Sussex. The age range is soft as there is no upper limit – but users are unlikely to be under 18.
6. Can I do offsite testing for this requirement?
Yes, offsite testing is the preferred method as we have very limited facilities for testing
7. Contract length can be shorten to 4 months.
The length of the entire piece of work is from May – September. We only expect ten, non-consecutive, days of work to be carried out in this time to specific deadlines
8. You've mentioned Mid Sussex residents as a primary user group, do you have any more detailed personas or research results that you're able to share at this stage?
We are not working using personas at this time, preferring the jobs-to-be-done framework. However, we do have some user profiles, analytics and further data about our audience.
9. Your stated budget range is £500 and you mention that you envisage no more than 10 non-consecutive working days to deliver all three phases of this work. Does this mean the budget for this work is effectively £5,000? Does this include the cost of procuring and incentives paid to participants, if so how many do you expect the supplier to engage with in this research?
Yes, we have a maximum budget of £5000 for this. Additional reasonable funds can be provided for incentives, but our previous experience with user testing has shown us that we can get a good response by offering a chance to win something rather than simply paying a flat fee to all participants.
For the card sorting and tree testing requirements, we prefer quantitative data and require at least 15 users. For the final usability testing we prefer qualitative data so require at least ten users for testing.
10. Will travelling expenses be paid to the supplier for site visits?
All reasonable expenses will be paid.
11. Can you please confirm your total budget for this is £5k? Also, is the council undertaking any design work on the website and will the research feed into this?
Our total budget will be £5000. If any extraordinary circumstances occur, then this could be increased.
The council is undertaking a full redesign of the website, of which this user testing will be a key component. As stated, the quantitative data will inform the information architecture, which the rest of the design will be built upon. The usability testing will take place towards the end of the project and will feed directly into the final design.
12. Quantitative research will inform the IA, but usability testing will expose usability issues. Is the client open to suggestion in terms of research activities? And has the team done any prior analysis on analytics and other data (e.g. contact centre) to identify top tasks/painpoints, and will this data be provided to the supplier? In terms of recruitment, will you be able to provide resources for people to help out with this?
The council is open to suggestions.
The team has examined all relevant analytics data to determine some of the top tasks, and developed some user profiles and associated data. This data can be provided to the supplier.
We are able to provide reasonable additional resources to help with recruitment.
13. Would it be correct to infer that the project available or this project is c.£5,000 (i.e. 10 days x £500/day)?
Yes, the maximum budget we have resources for is £5000. We will reconsider this under extraordinary circumstances.
14. Your per diem budget is below market rate for this kind of work and the level of expertise that you require. Will you consider applications at a higher rate?
£5000 is our maximum budget unless there are extraordinary circumstances.
15. Can we propose resource based T & M model to execute this work?
If we were to adopt this model, the maximum budget we would be able to allocate would still be £5000.