Cabinet Office

Managing research reports effectively (Discovery)

Incomplete applications

4
Incomplete applications
3 SME, 1 large

Completed applications

18
Completed applications
14 SME, 4 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Monday 4 December 2017
Deadline for asking questions Monday 11 December 2017 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Monday 18 December 2017 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work Discovery task to establish feasibility of a service to manage research report collections coherently across government departments, other agencies and public bodies.
Latest start date Monday 22 January 2018
Expected contract length 8 weeks
Location No specific location, eg they can work remotely
Organisation the work is for Cabinet Office
Budget range The budget range is £80,000 - £99,000 excluding VAT.
Travel, subsistence and all other expenses must be included in the overall cost.

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done This work is being done as part of an early phase of the Better Information for Better Government programme. This is a cross-government initiative to improve how government manages its digital information and facilitates collaboration online. The Cabinet Office is leading work to adapt core processes and attitudes to information in departments to fit with new digital ways of working in the 21st century civil service. This discovery phase activity must complete by 31 March 2018.
Problem to be solved Many government departments, other agencies and public bodies are responsible for large collections of research reports, many of which are not suitable for publication. Approaches to managing these collections vary in quality, resulting in sub-optimal exploitation of research across government.
Who the users are and what they need to do As a public servant I need to easily and quickly identify, and then seek access to, relevant research held within government that may assist me in my work, so that it is informed by available relevant research.

As an information management professional I need to understand how best to manage a research corpus in a way which is coherent across government to facilitate search, discovery and access decisions so that the value of government research is maximised.

As an information management professional I need to understand how such an approach may be extensible to other information collections.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done A limited number of government departments, other agencies and public bodies have undertaken activities to work towards solutions to this problem. The discovery and synthesis of this work will be an important component of this opportunity.

The programme team has an untested conceptual framework based on GaaP principles.

The programme team has created a list of planned outputs and desired outcomes from the discovery phase.
Existing team The supplier will be working with a small team of Civil Servants in the Cabinet Office / The National Archives and possibly with other suppliers undertaking related concurrent discovery activity.
Current phase Discovery

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place Interactions with the programme team will be in London and it is anticipated that a significant proportion of research activities will be London based.
Working arrangements We will want the team to work from their own premises, or remotely, meeting with the programme team weekly - at least half of these meeting to be onsite in Whitehall. The programme team will provide a point of contact for initial user research and other meeting requirements.
Security clearance

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
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.

Skills and experience
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Essential skills and experience
  • Have experience of working with multiple government departments / agencies on a single project (5 points)
  • Have experience in successfully providing knowledge transfer to client teams (5 points)
  • Have experience of conducting user research across a mix of general and specialist (e.g. KIM profession) staff (4 points)
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Have experience in working with small client teams in 'start up' mode (3 points)
  • Have experience of projects involving large collections of information assets with associated specialist meta-data (3 points)

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 3
Proposal criteria
  • Approach and methodology (7 points)
  • How the approach meets user needs (5 points)
  • How the approach meets your organisation’s policy or goal (5 points)
  • How the supplier intends to ensure effective knowledge transfer (8 points)
  • How they’ve identified risks and dependencies and offered approaches to manage them (5 points)
  • Team structure (3 points)
  • Estimated timeframes for the work (2 points)
  • Value for money (5 points)
Cultural fit criteria
  • Work as a team with our organisation and other suppliers, in a self-starting fashion: not over-reliant on the small client team (6 points)
  • Be transparent and collaborative both in decision making and, more generally, to facilitate knowledge transfer (8 points)
  • Be comfortable working at the boundary between modern digital ways of working and formal procedures and policies (6 points)
Payment approach Fixed price
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

60%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

20%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. What is the security clearance scope for this discovery? For the avoidance of doubt, is the scope of "research reports" Official/Official-Sensitive only, or is there a requirement for Secret or Top Secret research reports handling? A future developed service is likely to be replicated at multiple security levels, subject to cost/benefit analysis. The scope is not limited to Official/Official-Sensitive research reports at this stage, but it is not guaranteed to include higher classifications.

The focus of the discovery is on the user needs and the information architecture and service design options which are likely to be similar at all classifications.

The buyer's assessment is that this discovery could be undertaken by staff without security clearance.
2. Which directorate(s) within Cabinet Office is the procuring body for this service? The procuring body is the Better Information for Better Government programme team which is part of the Civil Service Group.
3. The phrase "unsuitable for publication" was used in the Problem to be Solved section of this brief. In the judgement of the buyer, what are the reasons these reports are deemed to be "unsuitable for publication"? The phrase "not suitable for publication" (sic) was used in the problem section of the brief to cover a number of circumstances. These include:

- Reports classified above Official;
- Reports held in paper form (but with electronically held meta-data);
- Reports containing commercially sensitive or other privileged information.
4. The opportunity document states that 'the programme team has created a list of planned outputs and desired outcomes'. Are you able to share this list, or a summary of these outputs and outcomes?
[Answer will be in two parts, outputs and outcomes, for the two lists]
In developing the opportunity the team had the following planned outputs in mind, but these are not intended to constrain responses.
Report and research artifacts covering:
+ User research on needs for research report management
+ Hypothesis testing of GaaP approach (common components
for: ingress, store, search, release, disseminate)
+ Synthesis of major departmental activities (MOD Athena, DfID Finder etc.)
+ Recommendations for technology development in alpha
+ Recommendations for information architecture (especially meta-data and rules base structure) development in alpha
+ Stretch - limited scope alpha prototype (possibly using extant corpus to illustrate user experience potential)
5. The opportunity document states that 'the programme team has created a list if planned outputs and desired outcomes'. Are you able to share this list, or a summary of these outputs and outcomes?
[Answer will be in two parts, outputs and outcomes, for the two lists]
In developing the opportunity the team had the following desired outcomes in mind, but these are not intended to constrain responses.
+ Departments / Agencies are enabled to adopt good practice approaches
+ Increased Departmental buy-in to programme
+ Increased potential for funding from multiple departments and/or other coordinators
+ Programme Team able to facilitate development of cross-govt designs patterns
+ Programme Team is well-placed to provide direction for next stage in Phase 3 and exploit discovery outputs
+ Programme Team enabled to consider options for extending capability to other collections
6. The opportunity document states that 'the programme team has an untested conceptual framework based on GaaP principles'. Can you provide further details about this conceptual framework, including any preferred software, tools, standards, and design principles that it might include? The conceptual framework only addresses outline design principles. It is based on Government as a Platform concept, with the idea of providing a 'report management platform' that multiple departments and agencies could use.

It envisages common components for:
+ ingress of a report including meta-data extraction and allocation to storage (which may be distributed and include physical archives)
+ search (possibly including search trimming)
+ release (if access allowed)
+ disseminate service
+ Meta-data store
+ Access rules engine

Like the planned outputs and desired outcomes shared above, this conceptual framework is not intended to constrain responses.