Awarded to North Highland

Start date: Tuesday 2 January 2018
Value: £277,860
Company size: large
Department for Transport, Traffic & Technology Division.

Local Transport Data – Discovery

9 Incomplete applications

7 SME, 2 large

18 Completed applications

12 SME, 6 large

Important dates

Friday 27 October 2017
Deadline for asking questions
Friday 3 November 2017 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Friday 10 November 2017 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
Discovery tests hypothesis that planners, operators and users would benefit from local transport data that is accessible and conforms to agreed standards and explores which data sets need prioritisation for improved sharing, proposing options for delivering improved data sharing, storage, derived value and costs savings.

Further info:
Latest start date
Monday 4 December 2017
Expected contract length
12 Weeks
Organisation the work is for
Department for Transport, Traffic & Technology Division.
Budget range
£250,000 to £350,000 inclusive of VAT and Travel & Subsistance

About the work

Why the work is being done
A round table chaired by the Department’s Secretary of State on 19 December 2016 learnt that local transport data is often siloed, of poor quality and only accessible to those who created it. The Discovery will test the hypothesis that local transport network planners, operators and users would benefit from local transport data that is more widely shared, accessible and conforms to agreed standards and the potential for regulation. It will also explore, through a maturity model, which data sets should be prioritised for improved sharing, and propose options for delivering improved data sharing, storage, derived value and costs savings.
Problem to be solved
Discovery will primarily
• Develop & test user stories about the use, availability and quality of local transport data.
• It will also investigate the benefits of:
o publishing Traffic Orders as machine-readable data;
o improving interoperability between Highways England and local authority highways data to improve performance on both network operations.
• Provide indicative cost option for service development.
• Recommend a chosen option for development during Alpha, describing technical, contractual and legal feasibility, resourcing & highlighting risks/dependencies.
This should result in a short report of findings, a catalogue of user stories to influence project & policy decisions.
Who the users are and what they need to do
Scoping exercise highlighted the following users:
• local highways authorities & Highways England;
• central &local government;
• public, including drivers, cyclists and pedestrians, residents, local businesses;
• public/private transport operators/providers, including bus companies, road freight/logistics companies; rail companies, taxi/ private hire companies;
• utility companies;
• journey planners/traffic information/satellite navigation and digital map providers;
• emergency services
The Discovery phase will re-visit this list, identify additional users, provide user stories, personas and suggested routes to improve data sharing for user testing, including the public, journey planner providers, local authority users and local transport providers during a subsequent Alpha Phase.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
Existing team
Graham Hanson, Head of Intelligent Transport Systems Policy in the Traffic and Technology Division, is the product manager for the “Discovery” phase.
James Padden, Policy Lead, Traffic and Technology Division (Discovery support)
Francesca McMahon, Policy, Traffic and Technology Division (Discovery support)
Current phase
Not started

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
While some discovery work can be undertaken remotely, most will need to be run as face-to-face sessions around the UK at local authority and transport sector supplier premises and at the Supplier’s own site. The Department does not have its own user research lab, so if this is required it will need to be sourced.
We would expect the appointed Supplier to be able to work at Department for Transport offices when required.
Address: Great Minster House, Horseferry Road, SW1P 4DR.
The team should also have the ability to travel to other locations and agencies as required to meet users.
Working arrangements
The team will need to work 5 days a week for 12 weeks. Some events or additional meetings with users may be needed around the country.

Suppliers shall provide milestone information as part of their submissions.

Also as part of the written proposal stage CVs will required for all resource assigned to the project.
Security clearance
All contractors’ personnel should be currently cleared to the Authority security clearance level of BPSS as a minimum and must be available to begin work with immediate effect following contract award. Evidence of clearance will be requested at the written proposal stage.

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
  • • Demonstrable experience of Discovery research sessions involving multiple stakeholders both in terms of handling large groups at once and large numbers of one-to-one interviews.
  • • Knowledge of relevant data platforms and technical architecture.
  • • Demonstrable understanding of Agile project delivery including evidence of undertaking similar Discovery phase that has passed GDS assessment as described in the Service Manual:
  • • Demonstrable experience of successful delivery of projects following the GDS Service Manual:
  • • Proven experience of leading Discovery projects within the public sector.
  • • Demonstrable experience of using innovative techniques to speed up identification of user persons and user needs
  • • Credibility with similar stakeholder organisations
  • • Experience of working on similar discovery projects that have successfully delivered outcomes articulated
  • • Experience of drawing up recommendations and options for alpha/beta on behaviour change and data projects.
  • • Experience of writing user stories and user profiles that have been used to influence development and deliver successful outcomes
  • • Evidence of supplier ability to meet 10 to 12 week discovery timetable
  • • An understanding of the policy and approach the government and the data community are taking with data and open data and of the benefits this provides.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • • Experience of working with users, the wider public and stakeholders at all levels in large and complex organisations.
  • • Experience of open data and data sharing projects.
  • • Knowledge of GDS strategic direction

How suppliers will be evaluated

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • • Identify the approach and methodology to the Discovery project planning and delivery, identifying the main stages and activities proposed at each stage. (10%).
  • • Detailed resource plan – demonstrating how in-house, supplier and external resource will be used and at what stage (5%).
  • • How the approach is designed to ascertain to user needs (5%).
  • • How risks and dependencies are identified and approaches are offered to manage them (5%).
  • • Confidence in the estimated timeframes for the work (5%).
  • • Demonstrate value for money (5%).
  • • Demonstrate how the requirements of other areas, such as Central Government, including Local Authorities and utility companies and contractors will be integrated into the project (10%)
  • • Demonstrable experience designing and developing end-to-end behavioural change / training and technical solutions (including front and back end) through range of previous work for customers on similar scale (5%).
Cultural fit criteria
  • • Experience of working as a team with our organisation and other suppliers (2.5%).
  • • Experience of transparent and collaborative decision making (2.5%).
  • • Experience of taking responsibility for their work and resolving problems effectively (2.5%).
  • • Evidence where status quo has been challenged resulting in an improved final outcome (2.5%).
  • • Demonstrable evidence of working with clients with low technical expertise (2.5%).
  • • Experience of working with public sector organisations including Central Government departments and local authorities (2.5%).
  • • Evidence demonstrating an ability to transfer knowledge and skills to Civil Servant team members (2.5%).
  • • Evidence of strategic thinking striving to deliver best possible solution/concept possible (2.5%).
Payment approach
Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. In order to provide greater context, please provide a link to documentation of the round table chaired by the Department's Secretary of State on 19 Dec 2016 (referred to in the 'Why the work is being done' section of the opportunity -
The reference to the roundtable meeting with the Secretary of State was purely contextual. The specification sets out the key tasks and principles.
2. When you say 12-weeks do you mean elapsed time hence end date of 23.02 or is this effort i.e. 12-weeks of activity and hence a likely pause over Christmas?
Yes – an extra week was allowed to cover for the Christmas period.
3. Can we ask how price will be evaluated? For example, will suppliers be judged on the whole budget proposed for Discovery?
The evaluation section sets the weighting for the Discovery project as a whole - technical competence (50%); cultural fit (20%); and cost (30%). It is not clear what further information is requested?
4. Does the DfT have any specific milestones in mind that should be accommodated in planning the Discovery?
The specification set out the requirements and timescale for the discovery. There are no specific milestones but the responses should demonstrate how the proposals meet the specification.
5. Will the scores from the skills and experience stage be carried through to final evaluation?
Essential Skills and Nice-to have Skills are evaluated at stage one evaluation

Stage two evaluation will be based on Proposal , Cultural Fit and Price Criteria
6. We note that suppliers are expected to start work immediately after contract award. Can we assume that the project would only be expected to start after contract signature?
Once the preferred bidder has been identified we would expect some initial discussions to agree the statement of work this information will then be included within the call-off agreement and then signed by both parties the contract will be expected to start on the agreed date with the contract owner.
7. Would DfT accept proposals that had an alternative duration?
No.  The timescale is required to be met by all suppliers.
8. Could you please provide the anticipated timescale for release of the tender document and submission of the proposal?
It is anticipated that requests for evidence in the form of the assessment methods noted in the advert would be sought the week ending 24 November 2017
9. Other than the named existing team, does the DfT intend to provide any other resources into the Discovery team?
The Product Manager is the main contact for the Discovery. Other resource may be available to support this role, subject to the needs of the contract.
10. FAO Suppliers

Please see update for information
The anticipated contract start date has been revised to 2 January 2018