Awarded to Hippo Digital Limited

Start date: Monday 16 October 2017
Value: £803,655
Company size: SME
NHS Digital

DDC Strategic Discovery

17 Incomplete applications

12 SME, 5 large

23 Completed applications

14 SME, 9 large

Important dates

Tuesday 25 July 2017
Deadline for asking questions
Tuesday 1 August 2017 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Tuesday 8 August 2017 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
Further information is available in the Information Document and SOW posted via NHS Digital eSourcing suite, Delta.

Delta Access Ref: 7EQV23RR97

Delta Link:
Latest start date
Monday 2 October 2017
Expected contract length
Until 30 Nov 2018 with option to extend up to a maximum of two years (Initial SOW for 6 months).
Yorkshire and the Humber
Organisation the work is for
NHS Digital
Budget range
The Call-Off contract will have a maximum value of up to £28m per annum. This cap is the cumulative total of spend approval across all NHS Digital DOS suppliers up to 30 November 2018. Therefore, this is the cumulative aggregate spend across all such suppliers and is not indicative of the spend under this proposed Call-Off Contract. Each Statement of Work shall detail the allocated spend to that particular project.

About the work

Why the work is being done
To meet business demands a procurement is required for outcome based cross-programme services. NHS Digital is looking to a Supplier to provide discovery expertise to support a number of programmes which are part of Paperless 2020. This Statement of Work (SOW) will establish a call-off contract through which this SOW will be awarded and used for future allocation of SOW's. This will allow the Supplier to deliver development services pursuant to SOWs agreed under this Call-Off Contract. Services may be delivered across any of the Buyers existing Portfolio of Programmes. SOW's will not be exclusive to any Supplier or Framework.
Problem to be solved
The Buyer requires a development partner, with specialist skills in supporting discovery phases of development, to assist the Buyer in the development of quality Digital Outcomes for a portfolio of programmes, including those that fall under Paperless 2020. Such programmes span across a number of areas of the digital health and social care landscape and by way of example could include solutions that cover work in the areas of GP Connect, Migrants & Visitors, Child Health. Summary Care Records, Summary Care Record Application, Citizen Identity Service, 111, Pharmacy supply chain and secondary users.
Who the users are and what they need to do
The users of the patients', clinicians, support staff, providers of analytic services and solutions span the health and social care network and may include many other end users in the health and social care field. We are creating robust, scalable and reliable digital solutions to meet the needs of these end users.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
The portfolio of programmes will be at various stages of the lifecycle, further information is provided in the Statement of Work. The initial statement of work is in relation to the Strategic Discovery a number of programmes which have been identified as a package of work needed to support and deliver the requirements of Paperless 2020. This is a Discovery Phase statement of work.
Existing team
The Supplier will be working with the Buyer's incumbent development team and with other third party suppliers.
Current phase

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
Primarily based out of NHS Digital's offices in Leeds, however Supplier may also be required to work in other NHS Digital offices in London and Exeter.
Working arrangements
Working with the on-site team as specified in the statement of work. This is required for collaborative working and security reasons. No expenses shall be paid for working at allocated base NHS Digital location. Expenses will be paid in line with the contract schedule 1G if required to work at a different location.
Security clearance
As per security requirements as defined in the Digital Outcomes and specialist 2 Framework Agreement Call-Off Contract together with any additional requirements as detailed in the SOW

Additional information

Additional terms and conditions
Additional terms are outlined in the draft call-off contract.

This is available to view via NHS Digital eSourcing suite, Delta.

Delta Access Ref: 7EQV23RR97

Delta Link:

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
  • The Supplier is expected to be able to demonstrate how they have delivered solutions in complex environments.
  • The Supplier is expected to be able to demonstrate experience and familiarity with user interface frameworks and standards.
  • The Supplier is expected to be able to demonstrate experience and familiarity with GDS principles, service design standard, assets and accessibility.
  • The Supplier is expected to be able to demonstrate experience and familiarity with user research techniques and approaches.
  • User research - support user research activities and usability labs to test key user journey alternatives
  • Service design - high-level service designs detailing public facing elements, internal support elements and operating procedures to support public-facing services.
  • UX Prototypes - clickable demo of key Identity user journeys to support user testing and user research.
  • Product ownership - product vision, backlog with user stories - prioritised backlog of requirements identifying MVP arranged as themes, Epics and user stories
  • Summary of findings - concise but detailed presentation of findings, with recommended solutions and roadmap for alpha and beyond
  • LEAN UX principles including defining problem statements
  • LEAN UX principles including driving out assumptions
  • LEAN UX principles including creation of proto personas
  • LEAN UX principles including creation and testing of hypotheses
  • LEAN UX principles including defining MVPs and KPIs
  • Provide evidence of your ability to deliver Outcomes with blended Buyer and other Supplier teams.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • JIRA (for work management & time tracking)
  • Confluence

How suppliers will be evaluated

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
See instruction document published on NHS Digital eSourcing suite, Delta Access Ref: 7EQV23RR97. Delta Link:
Cultural fit criteria
See instruction document published on NHS Digital eSourcing suite, Delta Access Ref: 7EQV23RR97. Delta Link:
Payment approach
Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. The documents referred to do not seem to be uploaded to this response opportunity.

Please could you clarify how suppliers are able to access these?
Apologies for the delay in uploading the additional information documents.

They are now available to view on Delta:

Access code: 7EQV23RR97
2. The closing date in Delta says 28/08/2017 but in the DOS framework the closing date is 08/08/2017 which is correct?
The closing date in delta relates to Stage 2 following the shortlisting process.

Suppliers must respond to this opportunity via the DOS2 portal by 23:59 on the 8th August. This is Stage 1 and then we will shortlist based on the responses we receive.
3. Is further guidance documentation available detailing word count for answers to questions, etc.?
At this stage suppliers have to respond to the opportunity via the DOS2 portal and we would expect there to be word count information detailed on the system.

Should you be shortlisted to Stage 2 the response document we issue at that stage via Delta will give further details.
4. At stage 2 the questions are not listed, just question 1.1 asking for an answer document upload with no detail about what the question actually is. Are we to assume the questions are as detailed in the essential and nice to have criteria outlined in the DOS framework submission? Will each question appear in turn as we answer a question?
The response document for shortlisted suppliers, Stage 2, will be issued via Delta.

At this time suppliers must respond to the Essential and Nice-to-have skills/experience via the DOS2 portal by 23:59 on the 8th August 2017.
5. Could you tell us whether the commodity platforms referred to in the Nice-to-Haves are commodity trading platforms, or commodity technology platforms?
Technology Platforms
6. There appears to be an additional Instruction Document available on Delta. Can you confirm if any instructions have changed please.
Yes, version 3 of the instruction shows changes to the final evaluation methodology worked example that will be used in stage 2, i.e. for shortlisted suppliers. To help identify the changes we've highlighted the text in yellow.
7. Stating that the Call-Off contract will have a maximum value of up to £28m per annum would appear to preclude SMEs.
That isn't our intention.

We believe that this initial SOW, and subsequent SOWs under the resulting call-off contract, would be suitable for the SME market. We are focusing our requirements on Discovery skills and experience, typically engaging in phases of six (6) to eight (8) weeks duration and are not looking for 'vendors of scale' in order to satisfy our needs.
8. Does the question regarding complex environments refer to technical (code) environments, or cultural environments e.g. stakeholder expectations, reporting lines?
Mainly focused on the cultural/working environment, but there are also many technical solutions that run on different technologies stacks.

The UX teams work with many internal/external teams who have different levels of understanding and interpretations of user centred design and the different roles that are required to build successful digital product. The UX capability is relatively new and still evolving, many UX assets, tools, approaches that you would expect to find might be missing or work in progress.

Suppliers have to show evidence that they can work in such environments and help contribute to successful delivery.
9. To avoid confusion, please could you provide examples of the user interface frameworks to which you refer?
The purpose is for potential suppliers to share with us which UI frameworks they use. For example if I used an HTML UI framework, the element of the UI framework could include elements from the technologies that produce the user interface; these include: HTML, CSS and JavaScript. There are different UI platforms (vendors) but the logic is same.
10. Can we review the SOW for this requirement?
The draft SOW has been attached in Delta. Access code: 7EQV23RR97. Please note this is not the final copy and there may be a few changes to this document before it is published to the shortlisted suppliers.
11. Are these different New Work Requests likely to be conducted in different locations or is each one split across Leeds, London and Exeter?
Primarily based out of NHS Digital's offices in Leeds, however Supplier may also be required to work in other NHS Digital offices in London and Exeter.
12. In Section 3.1 in Schedule 3, "Maximum SOW Call-Off Contract Charge" has been left blank. Is this deliberate?
Yes. The template SOW has been included for information and will be completed prior to individual award.
13. In Section 3.2 in Schedule 3, the “Supplier Key Staff” section has been left empty. Is this deliberate?
Yes. The template SOW has been included for information and will be completed prior to individual award.
14. Please can you provide an indicative profile of numbers of people and specific skills you are likely to need – is it 2 people in October ramping to 20 in 6 months, or 20 on day 1 ramping to 50 in 6 months? Just to get a scale of the commitment of resources. Also, if it’s possible, an estimate of the numbers of resources or level of commitment respectively in Leeds, London and Exeter?
It would be for you to use your judgement based on your experience of team composition and sizes for a Discovery phase. The work will be primarily based out of NHS Digital's Leeds offices.
15. Are you looking for a single provider of both Discovery and Technical Discovery Outcomes?
16. The supporting documents discuss TUPE. Are there any TUPE implications with regards to this procurement
This specific procurement does not have any TUPE implications.
17. When you say "DOS2 portal", do you mean Digital Marketplace?
18. Are we correct in understanding you are going to choose a subset of at least six of your ongoing programmes, some of which are listed in Schedule 3 (eg GP Connect), and for each one you would like to instigate a discovery phase?
That is our current intention but will be confirmed to shortlisted suppliers.
19. Are we correct in understanding that although this work is described as discovery work, some of it will be applying to programmes which are already in development?
Yes but only for Discovery elements.
20. We have worked on engagements where authorities try to staff as many of the Discovery and Alpha roles with their own people rather than with supplier resource. To what extent are you hoping to do this - is the expectation that the supplier will be working in mixed teams with the Authority?
Yes we would expect supplier to work in blended teams.
21. We note that evidence should be limited to one example only per question - in some instances to cover the full requirement we may need to draw on multiple examples. Is this permitted provided the word count is not exceeded?
22. The procurement documents mention you've already procured some aspects of the Digital Delivery lifecycle, and that you are intending on procuring more of the Call-Off-Contracts (similar to the Discovery one within this opportunity). You also say that you will NOT award more than one Call-Off-Contract to any one supplier. Can you help us to understand what you already have in place and what you have yet to procure?
There are five opportunities in total, including this one, and shortlisted suppliers will be asked to express their preference regarding the call-off contract/SOW they would prioritise:
23. Is each core New Work Request delivered by a separate digital team or are all streams delivered by one unified large digital team?
A combination of both approaches. Ideally we would like to have separate digital teams working on distinct New Work Request. Since the team builds up their experience with the domain and builds relationships with the programme. However often we have to move team members between multiple NWRs. This depends on the NWRs size, priorities and skills needed.
24. Under "who the users are", the sentence "The users of the patients" is slightly confusing. Are we correct to assume the list of users is as follows? Patients, Clinicians, Support staff, Providers of analytic services and solutions across the health and social care network, Possibly other end users in the health and social care field.
Yes, you are correct to assume that the list of users includes those that you listed. To add to your list, occasionally it is not patient but citizen (a national NHS non-clinical web application that is public facing). Also we work for back-office staff and if we are working cross government there are other user types. It depends on the programme we are supporting. However because there are many national programmes of work, the list of potential users can be very large. However in reality but it will be typically a smaller number of users and settings.
25. Can you give a brief description of the “Integrating Pharmacy” programme?
"The Pharmacy Integration will support community pharmacy as it develops new clinical pharmacy services, working practices and digital platforms to meet the public’s expectations for a modern NHS community pharmacy service. In particular, the fund will drive the greater use of community pharmacists and pharmacy technicians in new, integrated local care models.

This should improve access for patients, relieve the pressure on GPs and accident and emergency departments, ensure best use of medicines, drive better value and improve patient outcomes.
26. In Schedule 3, you detail four milestones. You also mention six discovery NWRs. The milestones are headed “Discovery 1 & 2” and “Discovery 3 & 4”. We have two questions: a) Do discoveries 1 & 2, 3 & 4 refer to the six NWRs? b) Milestone 3 is headed “Discovery 3 & 4”. Is this supposed to read “Discovery 5 & 6”?
"a) Yes
b) Correct. As you stated Milestone 3 should read Discovery 5 and 6.
27. Under “technical discovery outcomes”, you reference “identity standards”, “identity assets” and “identity services”. Are you using the word “identity” here in the same context as “Citizen Identity Service”?
In identity there are two streams of work: professional identity and citizen identity. Traditionally NHS Digital work has been focused on Professional identity. Citizen identity is relatively new. It is expected that there will be substantial overlap between the two areas. However there may be identity assets, standards or services that are unique to Citizen Identity Service or unique to professional identity and have no overlap.
28. It appears we need to create a Buyer account in order to view the SoW in Delta, is that correct? . If an account is not required, can you indicate which area of the site we need to visit to enter the delta access ref?
Yes, you will need to register on Delta. A draft of the SOW has been added to Delta to view. Please note this is not the final version.
29. Your requirements put a heavy emphasis on UX, but you do also mention service design, and also the delivery of solutions in complex environments. Are you looking for a partner purely to help with discovery, or are you also envisaging the partner will help to deliver solutions once services have been defined?
There is more discovery work (user research including usability testing, site visits, interviews, co-discovery workshops etc. ), then UI design work then service design work. Realistically we have a limited opportunity to do pure service design because often we having to work with partner organisations that have already invested in a particular system which we cannot influence. Currently the number of service design projects are small and the number of research projects are high but that can change. Yes, We are looking for a partner with the capability to help deliver solutions once services have been defined, if needed.
30. Is there a relative sense of scale and priority that can be indicated at this stage for each of the New Work Requests (NFRs). For example, GP Connect vs. Migrants and Visitors
NWRs are generally shorter pieces of work. The process for new work determines the NWR’s priority based on the criteria, UX resources and timescale.

The scale of the work depends on it’s boundary and requirement e.g. Citizen facing products require more resources and steps (GDS compliant) than professional products (A GDS like process with health elements focussed on certain user groups) In the example given, GP Connect work would initially be focussed and smaller than Migrant’s and visitors (which has a professional tool and a possible citizen facing application).
31. Our understanding from reading the specification is that this UX Discovery piece of work is for working across all programmes as required. Is this correct. If so what would be the level of scale required to support this work as anticipating that NHS Digital will have a very clear programme of work in place.
Yes. Programmes have defined boundaries and (usually tight) timescales. Typically work is time bounded and restricted meaning the research is doable with a small number of researchers. E.g. the largest might be 2 user researchers visiting 10 organisations, interviewing 60 people in roughly 3 months.(with corresponding reports and time spend setting up site visits and interviews). On the other end of the scale it might be one researcher doing a small number of contextual interviews on 6-8 people with write up in a week The DDC often performs remedial work on behalf of the programmes requiring small pieces of UX.