Awarded to Made Tech Ltd

Start date: Monday 23 October 2017
Value: £115,920
Company size: SME
Government Digital Service

WP1455: End to end tests for GOV.UK Publishing applications

6 Incomplete applications

5 SME, 1 large

4 Completed applications

4 SME, 0 large

Important dates

Wednesday 23 August 2017
Deadline for asking questions
Wednesday 30 August 2017 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Wednesday 6 September 2017 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
Testers and developers needed to understand the behaviours of our publishing applications and write new automated functional tests for them. The team would perform some exploratory testing and automate the tests to fit in with our Rspec and Capybara-based testing framework. Appropriate training and instruction will be provided
Latest start date
Monday 23 October 2017
Expected contract length
Approximately five months. Not beyond 31/03/2018
No specific location, eg they can work remotely
Organisation the work is for
Government Digital Service
Budget range
£100,000 - £115,920

About the work

Why the work is being done
In order to support and fulfil the vision for GOV.UK, we need to iterate our publishing applications and workflow rapidly and with confidence. Having good end-to-end functional test coverage for critical paths will enable us to deploy changes with confidence that they won't negatively impact publishers and citizens
Problem to be solved
GOV.UK is a platform of microservices. These are all well tested internally, but few publishing user journeys have end to end test coverage that exercises each component in the system. This lowers our deployment confidence. We need end to end tests written for common publisher journeys across 6 publishing applications: Travel Advice, Mainstream, Manuals, Collections, Contacts and Policies. We expect the work to be completed within 9 working weeks. There will weekly meetings with the supplier to ensure that the work remains on track.
Who the users are and what they need to do
"As a developer on GOV.UK
I want to test how my changes affect the entire publishing journey
So I can have confidence in the code I am writing and move more quickly."
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
We have a Docker-powered end to end test framework that runs the applications required for testing. An Rspec and Capybara-based framework then runs tests against the Specialist Publisher application and exercises that application, our publishing platform, routing layer and front end application.
Existing team
The existing team of GOV.UK developers will be available to review Pull Requests and answer questions on any undocumented application behaviour. The work will be coordinated by a GOV.UK Delivery Manager and overseen by a GOV.UK Senior Technologist. There will be a session with our in-house trainer on our publishing tools in order to understand the user journeys.
Current phase

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
GDS, The White Chapel Building, 10 Whitechapel High Street, London, E1 8QS
Working arrangements
The team should work in the GDS office for an initial period to gain context, but are encouraged to remotely afterwards. Fortnightly check in meetings on progress are required.
Security clearance

Additional information

Additional terms and conditions
Cabinet Office (CO) Travel and Subsistence policy will apply. All expenses must be pre-agreed with between the parties and must comply with the CO T&S policy.

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
  • 3+ years experience testing Rails applications
  • 2+ years experience working with Rspec and Capybara
  • 2+ years experience with Continuous Integration
  • Experience working with Git
  • Must be able to work independently of developers
  • Must be able to consult documentation and read code to understand application behaviour
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Evidence of working with Docker
  • Evidence of experience testing a system composed of microservices
  • Evidence of exploratory testing capability
  • Evidence of knowledge of PostgreSQL and Mongo databases
  • Evidence of testing Rails applications that use APIs instead of a database

How suppliers will be evaluated

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • Technical solution
  • Approach and methodology
  • How the approach or solution improves the stability of GOV.UK applications
  • Estimated timeframes for the work
  • How they’ve identified risks and dependencies and offered approaches to manage them
  • Team structure
  • Value for money
  • How the approach works to minimise the need for similar work in the future
  • Plan for understanding application behaviour
  • Strategy for determining what requires testing
Cultural fit criteria
  • Evidence of experience working in an Agile environment with Kanban
  • Evidence of experience reporting progress to Senior Management on a regular basis
  • Experience communicating with other developers via Slack or similar tools
  • Demonstrated understanding of the need to ask well defined questions of other developers
  • Examples of sharing learnings with other developers
  • Experience of pair or mob programming and understanding of the benefits
Payment approach
Time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Work history
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

No questions have been answered yet