Department for Work & Pensions

DWP Mobile Application Development- Discovery Phase

Incomplete applications

Incomplete applications
4 SME, 3 large

Completed applications

Completed applications
11 SME, 7 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Friday 2 February 2018
Deadline for asking questions Friday 9 February 2018 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Friday 16 February 2018 at 11:59pm GMT


Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work Mobile Application Discovery Stage. The DWP would like a supplier to provide some market research on the type of IPhone Applications that DWP employees would want. Once the research is completed, the supplier will propose a technical solution in order to create the applications proposed.
Latest start date Monday 5 March 2018
Expected contract length 3 months
Location North West England
Organisation the work is for Department for Work & Pensions
Budget range £50,000-£80,000

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done We would like to further enhance the mobile applications availble via the departmental iPhones. Therefore, we would like a supplier to carry out a discovery phase, to discover the type of applications our end-users may want. Once the supplier has completed the research, they will be expected to create a technical proposal on how the application will be developed. Therefore, the overall outcome is to provide a model/ framework that would allow us to build an application.
Problem to be solved We would like our end user to have access to more mobile applications, in order to increase productivity. We would like the supplier to carry out a discovery phase, in order to understand the type of applications our users need. ○ gather existing materials detailing tools, workflows and ‘days-in-the-life’ of employees.
○ Identify opportunity areas for applications - who, where, and how mobile can help employees better achieve outcomes required
○ Understand constraints and challenges of the potential applications
○ Creation of technical proposal for applications.
○ Technical refinement in light of further testing and constraints
Who the users are and what they need to do DWP Mobile Users. There are 12,000 DWP mobile users. They would like more mobile applications, that would help them carry out their job.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done Internal pre-discovery phase has identified an opportunity that DWP would like to explore
Existing team The proposed team will be working with the inhouse DWP MDM Team who are based in Central Manchester
Current phase Not started

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place The suppliers can be based anywhere, however, they must be able to travel to our office in Central Manchester when necessary, as well as other DWP offices.
Working arrangements The supplier is able to work remotely when carrying out their work. However, they would have to organise and attend workshops at DWP sites across the UK.
Security clearance The team should have BPSS clearance

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions Standard Contract. Additional clause to be added for Data Protection and Security

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
  • Do you have experience of successfully carrying out a discovery phase for Mobile Application Development, using Agile delivery principles and methods? 3%
  • Have you experience of delivering mobile application workshops across a large geographic area at multiple locations? 3%
  • Do you have previous experience of creating mobile applications that use modern auth workflows utilising Certificate authentication, SAML auth and 0Auth2.0? 2%
  • Do you have experience in developing iOS Applications? 2%
  • Have previously provided this service using Agile delivery principles and methods? 2%
  • Do you have previous experience of successful Discovery work for Mobile Applications involving integration with Microsoft Active Directory, Exchange & Oracle LDAP backend services? 3%
  • Would you still consider undertaking this opportunity if it was deem IR35 applicable? Information Only
Nice-to-have skills and experience

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 3
Proposal criteria
  • Provide a proposal on how you would deliver the required outcomes. (10%)
  • Following on from Q6 of the essential questions, please provide evidence of how you would provide this service to DWP. (10%)
  • Evidence how you would deliver this requirement as an agile project, evidence previous experience of delivering this type of engagement using these methods including any Project-Management toolsets. (10%)
  • Outline your understanding of developing applications for a "Walled-Garden” organisation with focus on strict networks, firewalls and Always-On VPNs. Please evidence how you would provide this to DWP. (5%)
  • Previous experience of utilising applications stack software such as Java,Swift,Cocoa,xCode,ITunesConnect, please detail the tools do you use for the workflow process in building prototypes & Mockups. (5%)
  • Please detail the tooling you would use for debugging, review and ongoing updates & patching.  Please evidence previous experience of providing this as part of a previous engagement. (5%)
  • Previous-experience-of-creating algorithm & APIs to embed and connect to back-end services on-premise and cloud. Please-detail-your process for creating and updating this, and whether the software used will be open-source-or-proprietary. (5%)
  • Please demonstrate the capability to undertake robust security design delivering the DWP Security Principles whilst not degrading the user experience. (5%)
Cultural fit criteria
  • There will be a need for constant communication and updates throughout the engagement process. How would you ensure this occurs?
  • Please indicate how you propose to engage with different DWP teams from around the country.
Payment approach Fixed price
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Please clarify the backend changes are applicable to mobile development or supplier need to create the same as well? After the discovery, app development will need integration with a predominantly Microsoft & oracle backend services. A supplier that has carried this type of work , will understand the need and complexities to deliver in line with this requirement. Backend integration will include granting access, port & firewall requirement, encryption and ensuring that app is in line with DWP Security compliance and the design workflow, data points are approved by DWP Design Authority.
2. Please clarify the what the complexity of changes under the preview of this requirement. We as a department have an existing change management process which will need to be followed during this engagement and the successful candidate will work with a team who can facilitate how we engage with the Change management team.
3. Your summary states “Once the research is completed, the supplier will propose a technical solution in order to create the applications proposed”. I was wondering if the department will only consider custom build or would Configurable Off The Shelf (COTS) enterprise product solutions also be considered? We are open to options and solution that will fit for purpose whether custom build or COTS.
4. Would a supplier conducting this work be precluded from proposing the use of its own technology in the creation of future mobile applications? We are open to technologies that will adequately cater for our needs, requirements now and in the future.
5. Could you please clarify if as part of the package, the selected supplier will be expected to deliver the specified discovery phase and also the first application? To clarify, the initial stage is discovery; after the discovery, we will come back out to the tender for the application and it will be 3-5 applications from the discovery.
6. Are you expecting the supplier to build also the API integration? If required by the said application - we may NEED to build the API but there are loads of API out there that we might be able to consume, provide the pass our security standards.
7. - Do you have existing documented API or webservices that the apps can connect to? No at the moment, we do not and this will be part of the discovery phase where we need to identify the apis and webservices we will need or consume if we want to do or perform x, y, actions.
8. Could you please clarify if you prefer multiple example references for the questions raised or 1 example articulated in depth? Multiple examples will show a great depth of what can be achieved but if there is 1x example that cover all - that will be great too.
9. How many locations do you believe the discovery phase would need to cover? The plan is to start with a site and invite key stakeholders to 1x site rather than going all over the sites.
10. 1) The overview states that pre-Discovery has identified a potential opportunity that DWP would like to explore. Does this refer to a specific solution opportunity or something else? Oppourtunity here is the Department want to carry out a discovery exercise with a supplier to help with identifying what we can achieve with our back end services & what our customer would like to have in terms of mobile applications
11. If shortlisted, will suppliers have access to the Pre-Discovery findings and artefacts to help formulate an approach to Discovery? Yes, what we have is very light and this engagement is supposed to help through this as well. Think of this engagement as a greenfield.
12. 3) Has an official project plan (with or without indicative timescales) been produced yet? No. The current plan is at a very high level.
13. Are there any specific user segments identified within the 12k DWP mobile users that should be focused on, or will this Discovery phase cover all possible segment personas? This is part of the discovery exercise
14. Would the post-Discovery implementing team be building new apps from scratch or extending existing apps or both? Most likely building new application from scratch.
15. What is an appropriate schedule for workshop frequency, i.e. how often can DWP provide the supplier with DWP mobile users or focus groups? This is part of the discovery process and availability of the DWP team; at this stage it is too early to say but we will have good engagement from our users – whether face to face or virtually.
16. 7) Given the focus during Discovery on user research and identifying opportunities, can you clarify how much detail you would in expect in the technical proposal? Would you expect a detailed technical proposal to be an output of the assessment of technical risks during Alpha? As much technical detail as possible to allow us make a valid decision.
17. Will the selected supplier have access to users or focus groups for the purpose of testing ideas? Yes
18. What sort of existing apps are already in use by DWP employees? A mixture of public apps and mobile version of software application that we use on desktop.
19. What is the success criteria from the Discovery phase? Eg documentation / presentation / prototype / etc.? All of the above + experience & know how, samples and feature rich ideas.
20. 11) You state the overall outcome is ‘to provide a model/ framework that would allow us to build an application’. Do you envisage the post-Discovery implementing team to build the technical solution for model/ framework AND build applications OR would the application build work be carried out by the DWP itself after education and training by the implementing team? At the present stage, the application development will be carried out by the chosen supplier; in the future we may decide to use the framework to build applications for ourselves; but that is a long way off.
21. What device and iOS versions need to be supported? Is there a potential desire for a future Android implementation? At the present stage – only iOS (iPhoneSE & iPhone6S) as that is what our estate comprises off.
22. Two typical outputs of Discovery are a plan to meet government accessibility requirements, and an outline of the assisted digital requirements. Are these expectations for this project? Plus validating that we have the right infrastructure and back end services that are compatible for application development & if we need to consume data set from cloud services; that there is a secure way to do this. And as a governmental organisation; we have policy that we need to adhere to.
23. Is there a preference for a single solution, or would it be possible to test multiple solutions, potentially for multiple segments of the user base? At this stage, we are open to a process that creates an App Factory for us and anything that gets us apps fast.